One person has been killed in a shootout, and the leader of an armed militia which occupied an Oregon wildlife refuge has been arrested.
Ammon Bundy and four of his militiamen were arrested during a traffic stop, according to police. One person was injured, while two other activists who were connected to the group, were also arrested in separate incidents.
The militia had occupied the refuge in support of two local ranchers. At this moment, the FBI has surrounded the members of the militia who still remain at the refuge.
Ranchers of Harney County accused the federal government of failing to respect their way of life, but residents have also disagreed with Ammon Bundy’s tactics.
According to the FBI, Mr Bundy was arrested in a traffic stop on Highway 395. His brother, Ryan Bundy; Bryan Cavalier; Shawna Cox and Ryan Walen Payne were also arrested.
The Bundy brothers are the sons of Clive Bundy- he was involved in a stand-off between armed anti-government activists and federal authorities in 2014.
The two activists, who were later arrested on separate occasions, have been identified as Joseph Donald O’Shaughnessy and Peter Santilli.
Those arrested each face a charge of conspiracy to impede officers of the United States from discharging their official duties through the use of force, intimidation or threats in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 372.
The Oregonian newspaper states that Bundy was on his way to a community meeting in John Day, Oregon, when he was stopped by the FBI. He was scheduled to be a guest speaker there.
According to local officials, about 25 miles of Highway 395 was shut after the incident.
The FBI and Oregon State Police have released a joint statement which says that the two had coordinated an “enforcement action to bring into custody a number of individuals associated with the armed occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. During that arrest, there were shots fired.”
“One individual who was a subject of a federal probable cause arrest is deceased. We will not be releasing any information about that person pending identification by the medical examiner’s office.
“One individual suffered non-life threatening injuries and was transported to a local hospital for treatment. He was arrested and is currently in custody.”
Clive Bundy said he was devastated at the arrests and death.“My sons are good people and they were there to help … It’s a rotten shame that people there are not trying to harm anybody and now they are shooting them dead. We’re not going to put up with this … This is a pretty big deal for America. This is the way they treat people who try to help? We are tired of the abuse.”
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