The Bundy standoff trial has just started and as expected the people involved in the armed conflict with the government are going to jail. A judge in New Hampshire has sentenced Gerald ‘Jerry’ DeLemus to jail for more than seven years.
After Gerald Delemus, there are eighteen other individuals still in custody awaiting their fate.
The 2014 Bundy standoff was a serious armed confrontation between law enforcement and supporters of the cattle rancher Cliven Bundy. This 20-year legal dispute occurred when the US Bureau of Land Management obtained a court order to demand payment from Bundy for grazing his cattle on federally owned land. Bundy had allowed his cattle to graze on public land without a permit and finally it caught up with him.
Gerald Delemus played a major role in organizing an armed group of backers in Nevada to fight law enforcement. The judge called Gerald Delemus a ‘bully vigilante’ at his sentencing. Gerald Delemus now becomes the first individual to be sentenced for his participation in an armed confrontation that created a public outcry. At issue were the vast acres of federal land in the US and why the public could not use it freely.
Delemus has been incarcerated since 2015, so his sentencing means that the 62-year old former US marine will still need to spend another 72 months in federal prison. Dustin Marcello, his lawyer said he will appeal the sentence.
Delemus played a key role in the tense armed standoff at the Bundy Ranch that led to the release of the ranchers’ cattle. This was hailed as a major victory for the ranchers against the Bureau of Land Management. Delemus started to organize armed patrols and served as an intermediary between the local authorities and the self-styled armed ranchers.
Once he was arrested, he pled guilty to conspiracy to commit an offense against the US and extortion. Soon after, Delemus wanted to withdraw his guilty plea but the judge was not happy with his actions. Judge Gloria Navarro said that he had been blinded by wrong information and chose the wrong path. The judge said that instead of paying the government for the 20 years of overgrazing fees, he chose a path of violence.
Delemus argued that he carried weapons to protect his family from government snipers but the judge was not having any off it. She pointed out that he had shot at law enforcement. For Delemus, who has been a sheriff and a mayor in his hometown of Rochester, NH, the past is all forgotten. He will spend the next 6 years behind bars and will have to start all over again. Two of his sons are also due to stand trial soon.