From the August 2001 Idaho Observer:

Feds seize cattle from another Nevada rancher

LAS VEGAS -- The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) seized 36 head of Nevada rancher Jack Vogt's cattle July 28.

BLM spokeswoman Jo Simpson claims that Vogt owes the government $300,000 in back grazing fees and fines.

The seizure came two days after Ben Colvin, 63, had 62 head of his cattle seized for $70,000 in back grazing fees. “The bottom line is they stole my cattle and I'm trying to stick up for my property rights,” said Colvin whose family has been cattle ranching 150 miles northwest of Las Vegas since the 1860s.

The feds say that the ranchers have been illegally grazing on federal land and that the agency was acting within the law to enforce grazing regulations.

As of this moment, 87 percent of Nevada is federal land.

Mineral county rancher and Nevada Committee for Full Statehood member Jackie Holmgren commented that Nevada law does not provide for the seizure of cattle in this manner. “They [the feds] are saying they can just take your property and they can sell it. There's no due process. No trial by jury. They basically have taken your livelihood,” he said.

BLM insistence upon seizing cattle and attempting to sell them at public auction is fueling the growth of a statewide movement that disputes federal “ownership” of lands within the state's borders.

Protestors have been picketing the auction yard in Fallon where seized cattle are being held.

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