US Attorney – Two Sentenced To Prison For Transporting Stolen Native American Artifacts

DENVER – LAWFUEL – Troy A. Eid, United States Attorney for the District of Colorado, in connection with the National Park Service (NPS), announced that MAXWELL and GARY GARIHAN were sentenced on March 31, 2008, by U.S. District Court Judge Marcia S. Krieger to serve federal prison terms for the interstate transportation of stolen Native American artifacts. MAXWELL GARIHAN was sentenced to serve 70 months in federal prison. GARY GARIHAN was ordered to serve 29 months imprisonment. Both defendants were ordered to pay restitution joint and several totaling over $86,000.

According to the indictment and subsequent plea agreement, between May 6 and May 8, 2007, the defendants illegally transported Navajo Rugs from Arizona to Colorado. The indictment further stated that between July 9 and July 19, 2007, the defendants illegally transported Indian artifacts and memorabilia, including moccasins, war clubs, and a pistol, from Nebraska to Colorado.

The charges stem from robberies the two committed at the Agate Fossil Beds National Monument in Nebraska, and the Hubbell Trading Post in Arizona. All of the stolen items have been recovered undamaged.

“The stealing of these artifacts is tantamount to the theft of someone’s history and heritage,” said U.S. Attorney Troy Eid. “Thankfully the artifacts were recovered without damage.”

The case was investigated by the National Park Service, with assistance from numerous other investigative agencies, including the Nebraska State Patrol, the FBI, US Park Police, Colorado Division of Wildlife, the Logan County Colorado Sheriff’s Office, the Sioux County Nebraska Sheriff’s Office, and the Omaha Police Department. The Arizona and Nebraska US Attorneys Offices, as well as the 13th Judicial District in Colorado, provided substantial assistance and cooperation during this investigation.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant US Attorney David Conner.

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