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#21 El Dorado

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Posted 04 April 2007 - 06:05 PM

OK a bit of research and I will admit I was wrong about the legal definition of Prospecting, here it is:

34-32-117 (2).
(12) "Prospecting" means the act of searching for or investigating a mineral deposit.
"Prospecting" includes, but is not limited to, sinking shafts, tunneling, drilling core and bore
holes and digging pits or cuts and other works for the purpose of extracting samples prior
to commencement of development or extraction operations, and the building of roads, access
ways, and other facilities related to such work. The term does not include those activities
which cause no or very little surface disturbance, such as airborne surveys and photographs,
use of instruments or devices which are hand carried or otherwise transported over the
surface to make magnetic, radioactive, or other tests and measurements, boundary or claim
surveying, location work, or other work which causes no greater land disturbance than is
caused by ordinary lawful use of the land by persons not prospecting. The term also does
not include any single activity which results in the disturbance of a single block of land
totaling one thousand six hundred square feet or less of the land's surface, not to exceed two
such disturbances per acre; except that the cumulative total of such disturbances will not
exceed five acres statewide in any prospecting operation extending over twenty-four
consecutive months.
El Dorado

#22 Dakota Slim

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Posted 04 April 2007 - 06:28 PM

Steve, the term "statewide" leads me to believe that definition came from a California statute. Is that correct?
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#23 Bill Southern

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Posted 04 April 2007 - 06:31 PM

Hi Chris, Earl, Steve and All,

Yes Chris and that happened in The Prescott national Forest at or I should say neat Lynx Creek. I talked to the head honcho and everything was cool after that, but it did sure screw up a weekend for me when the deputy ranger dude ran me off.

Steve, looks to me like Earl is simply researching and making a point and not saying it is ok to metal detect on NF lands private or claimed. Pears to me he is simply willing to do a bit of research and point out the obsurdity of it all...How the hell can we interpert a law they are even confused about?

I have been following a case closely as of late and it all ends up being a purly civil matter in the end if there is no actual evidence of theft of minerals. I think civil is the one where only the lawyers win tisc-tisc.gif

Good hunting, Bill

Don't think too much, you'll create a problem that wasn't even there in the first place.

 

Be Sure To See Nugget Shooter For all your MINELAB, COILTEK and other Metal detecting needs!

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#24 lotsa luck

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Posted 04 April 2007 - 08:34 PM

Earl... If this "Doug" person is the Doug Vandergon of the PNF you can toss everything he says right out the window. The guy simply loves to interpret regulation how he and his kind wants. You were given some bad information. remember, their job includes keeping you and I out of their forest. Mr Vandergon is also a card carrying member of the Sierra Club and Greenpeece.

BTW the local SO as well as BLM will be happy to prosecute mineral trespass and guys like me are only to happy to help them out in doing so.

#25 Denny

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Posted 04 April 2007 - 09:06 PM

Wow this took off right from the bat.
Earl That is good to know .Yet what i have found and this has been discussed before is that the law is explained by each officer differently.I have seen this in the field.Yet in the Randsburg area a call to the sheriff Is all that needs to be done,Sounds like this FS guy is trying to lesson his work load,If you have your paper work showing all info.That right there will start the process of Law.It is not as open or as difficult as your FS said.There are laws stated to deal with this.However if you do not understand the law and can not explain this to the officer you may find yourself in a bit of a pickel.The lesson learned from this is to know the law and your rights.Do not intrude on others rights or use excessive force.Hell if you do not understand the law how in the hell can you defend yourself.Unless you have Rabinowitz and Rabinowitz on retainer.Be smart and be calm.To many have used force as an excuse.

Dig it all Leave no stone unturned,

Dennis Miller
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#26 sawmill

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Posted 04 April 2007 - 10:35 PM

First someone needs to explain the difference between claim jumping
and hi grading to Andy.
There is two levels of law enforcement officers in the Forest Service.
Andy doesnt have the power to judge and fine legal claim owners for
anything except littering and has to catch them in the act. The district
cop has less power than a city cop. He needs to read the manual before
he gets someone in big trouble.
Any enforcement against a claim owner comes from the regional office,
and they will send a special agent,not a district cop.
This will only happen if someone with the authority files a complaint with
the investigators office .
Mineral theft and trespass is against the law. If the claimant has a good
mining lawyer ,you may wish that the claim owner had of shot you.

#27 visitorGotGold_*

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Posted 05 April 2007 - 01:47 AM

Over the past several months there have been some very informative discusion(s) on the various forms I visit regarding this issue, in some cases the 'kitchen sink' was thrown back and forth. However, many gained a wealth of information from the same regardless!

I think we can all agree that this issue is driven by the cost of precisous metals rising over the past few years. You know to a greater extent I'm glad this is happening today, because it brought out how our land useage and mining claims rights are erodeing due to the incompetence/mis-information on the part of the managing agencies involved as well as the uneducated owner of a mining 'claim'. (I don't have all the answers but, I'm looking).

I sometimes think we sould change the title of "claim jumping" to YOGI BEAR MEETS THE FOREST SERVICE! (old fart).....nothing implied here but Yogi....well, nuf said!

What I'm finding via these 'threads/posts' is a lack of "Real Clarity" on How to Lawfully Approach and Handle this Problem in a manner where.... (1) The rights of the public are not abridged.... (2) The rights of the claim owner are properly addressed and again not abridged.... (3) There is factual information distributed to the general public, AND NOT THE LACK OF, by the FS and BLM respectivly, be it by 'district or central/regional office' which is CLEAR AND TO THE POINT.

Maybe I'm asking for to much, especially from agencies that have been doing their best to infringe upon our abilities to have proper lawful access to our lands......and really don't now crap from shine-ola!

Anyone wishing to send me CURRENT information regarding new regulations/restrictions, please send a PM through the forum, I'm well aware that the "dog and pony show" FS/BLM public meetings mean nothing more than I described....It's already been 'set in stone' and nothing more than the LAST FORMALITY (public meeting) to overcome before a regulation is instituted, and then has to be fought in a lawsuit.

Better yet contact me via this email address, gary@hystware.com

BTW, ....please understand one thing folks, I more than likely will not be able to respond to your PM's on the fly, other than to say thanks for your input! I know this can sagway well with what others are doing today to preserve or rights!

Gary

#28 Micro Nugget

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Posted 05 April 2007 - 02:07 AM

When the 13 colonies revolted and became states they gave certain powers to the newly formed federal government, but retained every power not expressly so vested. Among these are the state's police powers and the right, accordingly, to enact substantive laws. Thus, crimes such as the various forms of trespass are the product of state law (sometimes delegated by the states to their counties and cities). They are enforced by state, county or municipal law enforcement officials in state courts.

Federal laws deal with federal crimes. There has to be some federal nexus. Examples include military law, the IRS laws, espionage, things that happen on federal properties and the types of substantive laws that involve crossing state lines.

States also have civil laws. The tort of trespass is one of these.

For a crime of trespass to be criminally prosecuted successfully each and every element of the crime must be proved beyond a reasonable doubt. Typically trespass is a misdemeanor and must occur in the presence of a law enforcement officer in order for the preliminary elements of reasonable cause and lawful arrest to be established. If a citizen makes the arrest, all of the remaining elements must be proved in order to get a conviction.

Forest Service and BLM officials are empowered only to enforce federal laws. Thus, the laws and procedures that pertain to access, claiming and the laws that protect natural resources and the environment are the types of laws they are supposed to know and enforce. Some are knowledgeable, some are not and a few are down right ignorant. Many these days are zealous to a fault and abuse their authority.

State law enforcement officials have no jurisdiction in federal enclaves such as military forts or national parks. Most FS and BLM land is not considered an enclave. Thus, local law enforcement would have jurisdiction over most claim trespass situations and would be the ones to call.

In some specialized situations the crime of attempted trespass may be actionable, at least in theory. Perhaps that is what the FS person was adverting to. These types of cases are very rare.

Crimes require a certain element of intent. Thus, if a claim is not marked, it may prove difficult to convince a jury beyond reasonable doubt that the defendant knowingly trespassed. Such factors must be weighed by the district attorney's office before expending limited taxpayer resources on a weak case. Civil torts do not require the same level of proof (compare the OJ criminal acquittal and contrast with the civil verdict obtained against OJ for the same incident).

Monetary damages in a civil case must be proved. Typically these are small or speculative. However, the claim owner does have equitable relief available in addition to monetary damages, such that in a proper case a court can issue an injunction. Violation of the injunction by the trespasser is considered an affront to the court. The judge issues a bench warrant and can punish the trespasser by criminal contempt (which can mean going directly to jail).
Martin WSPA#5

Prospecting success, be it for HEARTS, TRUTH or GOLD, takes COURAGE and HONESTY to penetrate through the appearance of things, plus PATIENCE and FORTITUDE to work through the many layers of things of which both nature and human nature are composed.

#29 visitorGotGold_*

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Posted 05 April 2007 - 03:23 AM

Thanks, Micro Nugget......GREAT INPUT!!! whoopie.gif

This is what I call learning.... smrt1.gif


EARL...Thank you for taking the time to ask the questions as you did to those "In Charge"! I'm pushing 60 and still in school... eee.gif

#30 El Dorado

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Posted 05 April 2007 - 07:28 AM

A bit of research on Arizona law revealed the following: (taken from) www.azleg.state.az.us

13-1504 Criminal Trespass In The First Degree

A. A person commits criminal trespass in the first degree by knowingly:

1. Entering or remaining unlawfully in or on a residential structure or in a fenced residential yard; or

2. Entering any residential yard and, without lawful authority, looking into the residential structure thereon in reckless disregard of infringing on the inhabitant's right of privacy.

3. Entering unlawfully on real property subject to a valid mineral claim or lease with the intent to hold, work, take or explore for minerals on such claim or lease.

4. Entering or remaining unlawfully on the property of another and burning, defacing, mutilating or otherwise desecrating a religious symbol or other religious property of another without the express permission of the owner of the property.

Punishmnet for 1st degree Criminal Tresspass:

Criminal Trespass in the "First Degree" is a class six (6) felony if it involves the entering or remaining unlawfully in a residential structure; involves a "cross burning"; or involves entering or remaining unlawfully in or on a critical public service facility. For a first offense a class six (6) felony, punishment can be probation with zero (0) days in jail up to one (1) year in jail; or prison of four (4) months to two (2) years of incarceration. If the person has one (1) allegeable historical prior felony conviction, then the "prison only" range is nine (9) months to two and three quarters (2.75) years in prison. If the person has two (2) allegeable historical prior felony convictions, then the "prison only" range is two and one quarter (2.25) to five and three quarters (5.75) years of incarceration.

If the Criminal Trespass involved the entering or remaining unlawfully on a fenced residential yard; or looking into a residential structure ("peeping"); or on a piece of property without a valid mineral claim ("illegal mining"), then it can be charged as a class one (1) misdemeanor. The range of punishment for a class one (1) misdemeanor is probation with anywhere from zero (0) days in jail up to six (6) months in jail, and a fine of up to $2500.00 plus an 80% surcharge.
El Dorado

#31 visitorEARL_*

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Posted 05 April 2007 - 08:10 AM

lotsa luck

Yes, It was Doug Vandergon. I believe what you say about him. He sure wanted to make his point about relics to me.




Thanks guys for all the contributions and knowledge. I think we are all learning a great deal with this thread.

#32 lotsa luck

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Posted 05 April 2007 - 09:20 AM

QUOTE (EARL @ Apr 5 2007, 08:10 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
lotsa luck

Yes, It was Doug Vandergon. I believe what you say about him. He sure wanted to make his point about relics to me.
Thanks guys for all the contributions and knowledge. I think we are all learning a great deal with this thread.


Man, now THATS scary. Last I heard he had walked into Palace Station and nailed his pony tail to the door, then quit and left. The man is a total wack job when it comes to mining. He once made us "reclaim" about 150 LF of flood scoured bedrock or lose our bond. We did so even though that section of stream was an obvious blow out that had never been covered in overburden. 2 months of hard work getting it "just right" for the tree hugger and the very first rain cleared it all out again. He then spent our bond to do it themselves yet it never happened. To this day that bedrock remains as mother nature intended. Stay away from the guy if you can.

He also closed another claim by saying they had found some Shrew droppings in the forest litter and even though no Shrews were ever found in the resulting "study's" they did the area was quality habitat for shrews to live so we could only use the claim during the months of Dec/Jan. Of course there is only snow and ice there during those months. He is a real piece of work in how he interprets regulation.

#33 richs

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Posted 05 April 2007 - 04:42 PM

Hi All,
Great post Earl....

QUOTE
A bit of research on Arizona law revealed the following: (taken from) www.azleg.state.az.us

13-1504 Criminal Trespass In The First Degree
Thanks El Dorado this is what I was looking for.



Rich
Keeping America Lead Free one bullet at a time.
WSPA #68
Rich

#34 Regmaglitch

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Posted 05 April 2007 - 08:27 PM

Hi Guys,
Just so you know, That FS guy Doug has been trying to intimidate individuals and club members for many years. I have heard first hand reports from many people who were prospecting on Roadrunner claims. He had also tried to tell myself and two friends that we couldn't do any panning on an unclaimed section of creek because we didn't have a claim. He has some very "unique' interpretations of the 1872 mining laws. He does everything in his power to deter dredgers, panners, and detectorists. He wasn't always the mineral policy officer either. He got his position after the older "wise-use" advocates in the PNF retired and the Clinton administration came in and made some radical changes in FS policies. Back in the 1980's he was the ranger stationed in Crooks canyon at The Palace Station. Here's where things get interesting. On May 30th, 1989, four Earth First eco-terrorists attempted to topple an electrical transmission tower that supplied power from the Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station and were arrested by the FBI. All four were convicted and spent various amounts of time in jail. They were Marc Baker, David Foreman, Margaret (Peg) Millet, and Ilse Asplund. About 1985 While Doug was stationed at Crooks Canyon he got married. The woman he married was Margaret (Peg) Millet! They later divorced, probably to protect his career government job.
So, you have to wonder....is it possible that the most anti-mining, radical environmentalist, Earth First inside man, is also the Mineral Policy Officer for the PNF? Hey, they were only married...I'm sure they didn't share political or philisophical views......................naaaah, not possible.
Nuff Said, Ben

#35 lotsa luck

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Posted 05 April 2007 - 08:49 PM

QUOTE (Regmaglitch @ Apr 5 2007, 08:27 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hi Guys,
Just so you know, That FS guy Doug has been trying to intimidate individuals and club members for many years. I have heard first hand reports from many people who were prospecting on Roadrunner claims. He had also tried to tell myself and two friends that we couldn't do any panning on an unclaimed section of creek because we didn't have a claim. He has some very "unique' interpretations of the 1872 mining laws. He does everything in his power to deter dredgers, panners, and detectorists. He wasn't always the mineral policy officer either. He got his position after the older "wise-use" advocates in the PNF retired and the Clinton administration came in and made some radical changes in FS policies. Back in the 1980's he was the ranger stationed in Crooks canyon at The Palace Station. Here's where things get interesting. On May 30th, 1989, four Earth First eco-terrorists attempted to topple an electrical transmission tower that supplied power from the Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station and were arrested by the FBI. All four were convicted and spent various amounts of time in jail. They were Marc Baker, David Foreman, Margaret (Peg) Millet, and Ilse Asplund. About 1985 While Doug was stationed at Crooks Canyon he got married. The woman he married was Margaret (Peg) Millet! They later divorced, probably to protect his career government job.
So, you have to wonder....is it possible that the most anti-mining, radical environmentalist, Earth First inside man, is also the Mineral Policy Officer for the PNF? Hey, they were only married...I'm sure they didn't share political or philisophical views......................naaaah, not possible.
Nuff Said, Ben

Well, I wasn't going to bring it up but you nailed it perfectly, not to mention when the heavy equipment used in making the new bridge over Big Bug creek at Mayor was destroyed by Greenpeace good old Dougy was right in the middle of it all. Of course he defied suspicion under Clinton, but he was ankle deep in it all. I'm sure he has all of our best interests in mind. Yeah, right...

#36 visitorGotGold_*

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Posted 06 April 2007 - 01:56 AM

Folks,

The above posts say alot about what we're up against. As long as the words/information we post have the Facts to back them up we're in good company.

Not to get to political here, but I'm sure many remember when the Bill/Hil team took office, all US Federal Prosecutors'/Attorneys were "fired".

This thread is a fact finding trip of which I have not seen taking place before, KEEP IT UP!

I must ask how many others have you (forum members) encountered managing the FS and BLM today, that exibit this same over zealous charactor towards prospectors and miners today, ..... and I ask only for the True Facts.

The other thing that comes to mind is the issue of segregating or grouping us into a "herd" so to speak with regards to the type of vehicle we can or cannot use to have access to our lands....that's another highly charged arguement.....90% of which IMHO is total BS. Yes, there always will be the....BONEHEAD! .....And, lets not forget the "office" where the directive is comming from.

Those small few that abuse are rights as given, make it tough on law abiding citizens in the process of dealing with these beaucratic agencies, like many have said.....by the time it gets to the Public Comment stage, it's a done deal.

I hope I didn't pull this "off-track", keep up the good research everyone it's an important issue for all. whoopie.gif

Gary

#37 El Dorado

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Posted 06 April 2007 - 08:42 AM

Over the long years of claim ownership, I have become very anti FS for most of the reasons mentined above. However on the other hand I have become very Pro BLM. They have always lived up to their mandate of promoting mineral recovery from federal lands.

Just a note about some of the names mentioned, Probably the most dengerous is Dave Foreman, former Sierra Club President, founder of ELF, and now main the force behind the "Wildlands project". http://www.wildlands...htm/summary.htm They are out to control 50% of North America. They have political lobby and funding arm (the Sierra Club) and a militant arm (the ELF). It has taken Foreman many years to infiltrate and poison the FS and he has done a good job.

As I mentioned before, the FS beaurocrats have a hidden agenda, it is very green and dangerous for all of us. It is imperative that you know your rights under the 1872 mining laws, and your State laws. It is always a good thing to politly challange the FS and make them Show you the law, not just take their word. The Supreme Court has stood behind the 1872 Mining Laws and they give you well defined rights.
El Dorado

#38 sawmill

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Posted 07 April 2007 - 12:37 AM

GotGold
For an honest answer most FS law enforcement officers are pretty decent.
I know and deal with several. One of my best friends is a special agent.
But there is plenty of Andy's and Dougs to give them all a bad rap. They
like to make up their own rules and intimidate or bully people that don't
know or understand the laws . The Forest Service is a lot tougher to deal
with than the BLM because each district can have different rules.
Most Forest Service law officers will give a honest answer or show you
the law straight from the manual.
I bet Andy ain't half as tough as he talks when he confronts someone that
knows the rules.
As for the County sheriff getting involved in a mining claim trespass,it depends
on the county. The BLM has agreements with some counties for law enforcement,
and some they don't, same goes for the Forest Service.
A mining claim is on federal land ,subject to federal rules ,and regulations just
like a timber sale. If the State trespass laws don't work,you can still press federal
charges.
Cops are cops,there is good ones and bad ones. Once you meet a bad one it
makes you distrust all of them.




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