Jury convicts man for destroying federal land in Saguache County

GRAND JUNCTION -- A Grand Junction jury took less than an hour of deliberation to convict Robert Timothy Allen of depredation of federal property.  The guilty verdict was announced Aug. 14, in the United States District Court for the District of Colorado.

Allen was indicted in 2016 and charged for damaging federal land in Saguache County between July 24, 2013, and May 22, 2014.  After the indictment, Allen evaded arrest for nearly two years before being arrested and ultimately detained in 2018.  According to evidence presented at this week’s trial, Allen dug-up about three acres of federal land with a bulldozer.  While he claimed to be lawfully prospecting federal land, he received four official notices from the Bureau of Land Management and the Colorado Division of Reclamation, Mining, and Safety that he was violating the law and directing him to stop.  After refusing to stop violating the law, he was prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office.

“Colorado is known for its beautiful scenery, and our public lands are a treasure for all Coloradans,” said United States Attorney Jason Dunn.  “Together with our federal partners, my office will ensure that these public lands are protected so that we all may enjoy them for years to come.”

“The BLM appreciates the coordinated effort with the Department of Justice in resolving this case,” said BLM Colorado State Director Jamie Connell.  “Managing our public lands and its public resources are obligations we take seriously.”

Sentencing is currently scheduled for Nov. 4.


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