January 7, 1995 in City

Conviction Of Earth First! Member Upheld

Associated Press

A federal appeals court has upheld an Earth First! activist’s conviction for lying under a U.S. Forest Service vehicle in the group’s private encampment in Idaho.

Erik Ryberg of McCall, Idaho, was convicted of interfering with Forest Service officers in the performance of their duties, and sentenced to two months in jail and a $500 fine.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Friday that the officers were engaged in their duties of forest protection.

The court said Forest Service officer David Magers was ordered by a supervisor in August 1993 to deliver a message to a resident of the Earth First! camp that a relative had died. The camp was on private property next to the Nez Perce National Forest.

Magers and a partner drove to the camp and were greeted rudely and told to leave, the court said. As they were leaving, Ryberg threw himself under their vehicle, was pulled away and returned, delaying their departure, the court said.

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