Siskiyou County District Attorney refuses to prosecute suction gold dredgers in light of recent Rinehart decision
October 28, 2014by Scott Harn
ICMJ's Prospecting and Mining Journal
Dave McCracken of the New 49ers reports he received written confirmation from the Siskiyou County District Attorney that suction gold dredgers will not be prosecuted for dredging without a permit in Siskiyou County in light of the recent Third Court of Appeals decision in People v. Rinehart.
If you haven't been following the Rinehart case, you can find a summary here.
The American Mining Rights Association states they will be presenting this information to other counties in the Mother Lode region of California and asking them to follow suit.
Siskiyou County is in the northernmost part of California and includes many gold-bearing rivers such as the Klamath, Salmon and Scott rivers, and numerous gold-bearing creeks. It's also the home base of the New 49ers in Happy Camp.
Siskiyou County is rural area with a rich history of gold mining. The citizens there recognize that suction gold dredging does not harm the environment and adds significantly to the local economy. In fact, the Board of Supervisors became so frustrated with interference from regulators in Sacramento they voted 4-1 in favor of secession from California in 2013.
Here is the note from Dave McCracken:
We have just come into written correspondence from the District Attorney of Siskiyou County which is rejecting to prosecute suction dredgers without a permit as a result of the recent Third Appellate published Decision. This should go a long way towards prompting California to establish a reasonable set of regulations and permitting system in time for our 2015 season. Watch for more on this in our November newsletter.
I want to thank everyone who has been responding to my requests for more participation in our ongoing fund-raiser which will end this coming Friday with 3 ounces of my gold nuggets to be given away.
The really good news is that Jeff Kuykendall, owner of Proline dredges, is so impressed with our efforts, he has offered up one of his brand new Super 4-inch suction dredges as a prize to be used in our New 49’ers Legal fund-raising efforts.
That’s a $4,800 dredge! Garret Electronics has also offered up a great prize! We are really on a roll!
So how about this for an incentive: If we receive 100 or more legal contributions between now and the close of business this coming Friday, 31 October, we will offer the 4-inch Proline dredge as our grand prize in the next legal drawing which takes place on 27 February, along with twenty 10th-ounce American Gold Eagles.
Come on, you guys; let’s celebrate our our wins by making this the most productive legal fund-raiser we have ever done!
You can find out more about the gold nuggets we are giving away this Friday, and how to contribute, by going here: http://www.goldgold.com/klamath-river-gold.html
Thanks very much for all your support, you guys!
The New 49’ers Legal Fund
27 Davis Road
Happy Camp, CA 96039
Meanwhile, the consolidated suction gold dredging settlement hearings are still underway in San Bernardino. The next settlement conference is scheduled for November 14.
Public Lands for the People (PLP) also continues to raise funds to pay the attorneys in these cases and they have donated items available for sale on their eBay page.
And Brandon Rinehart is raising funds for his criminal case and wanted to thank those who have supported him thus far. Rinehart's case was referred back to the lower court when he won his appeal in the Third Court of Appeals.
Rinehart noted he received $2,500 from PLP to retain attorney James Buchal and $2,500 from his father, Johnny Rinehart, when his case began two years ago. Follow up contributions have come from the Western Mining Alliance, Comstock Gold Propsectors, New 49ers, American Mining Rights Association and many individuals.
Contributions for Rinehart's criminal case can be sent directly to attorney James Buchal. (Please note on your check or contribution that it's for the Rinehart case.)
Buchal & Murphy, LLC
Attorney James Buchal
3425 SE Yamhill St, Ste 100
Portland, OR 97214