Judge Ochoa has ruled in favor of the miners:
This morning, we obtained the written 22 page document on Judge Ochoa’s ruling in the PLP case in San Bernadino.
Firstly, let us all thank PLP and especially Jerry Hobbs who unfortunately could not be here to see his lifelong efforts come to fruition. Also, we need to thank Brandon Rinehart for staying in his fight as the judge quotes the Rinehart case extensively. And also thank all of those who helped fund and support the PLP case and Brandon’s case.
So what happens now? There is another settlement conference set for the 23rd with the State and the parties to see if they can come to an agreement on which regulations to apply. The 1994 regulations will be the starting point.
Does this mean we can dredge? Not exactly. But the judge does state in the documents that prosecution under the defacto ban which they called a “moratorium” is unenforceable. Because of this, we are going to move to have Jim and Ron’s case (our two guys who were cited near Fresno last year) dismissed today. We really cannot see any prosecuting attorney seeking prosecution for a citation of dredging without a permit going forward right now.
We plan to contact the local Sheriff’s we’ve been working with behind the scenes the last few months and provide them with a copy of Judge Ochoa’s ruling. We believe they will not enforce the moratorium any longer.
We know you have a million questions, but please know that what remains now is just determining the regulations, and that meeting is on the 23rd.
We all have difficult decisions to make in life and AMRA is not advocating for anyone to violate any laws, no matter how unconstitutional. But frankly and personally…………..I am going dredging. I have been denied my constitutional right governed by law to make my living mining in the most economically and environmentally sound way by those on the political left who’s agenda is not about helping the environment, but ideology.