Senators call archaeological theft raid overkill

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

Layton, Utah (AP) - Utah's U.S. Senators say they want congress to investigate the actions of federal agents who arrested two dozen people for the theft of ancient artifacts stolen from public and tribal lands in the Four Corners area.

Sens. Orrin Hatch and Bob Bennett, both Republicans, say the raid was overkill.

Federal indictments accuse the people of stealing, receiving or trying to sell American Indian artifacts including bowls, stone pipes, sandals, arrowheads, jars, pendants and necklaces.

Some 300 federal agents - about half from the Bureau of Land Management - were involved in the arrests.

Bennett called the raid outrageous, saying agents shouldn't have searched one person's home for 10 hours for a single item and that it was inappropriate to put them in handcuffs.

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