Wildlife refuge occupier files lawsuit challenging government's - KPTV - FOX 12

Wildlife refuge occupier files lawsuit challenging government's title to land

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Shawna Cox, jail booking photo Shawna Cox, jail booking photo

Shawna Cox, one of the defendants currently on trial for occupying the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge earlier this year, has filed a lawsuit challenging the federal government's claim to the land.

In a complaint filed in Harney County Circuit Court Sept. 26, Cox identifies herself as "an individual who took hostile adverse possession of the Malheur Wildlife Refuge in hope to show the people of Harney County how Federal Government is involved in taking their lands and opportunities from them."

Cox, along with Ammon and Ryan Bundy and others, took over control of the refuge in January in protest of what they perceived to be over-reaching by the federal government.

Seven defendants, including Cox, are currently being tried on conspiracy charges for the weeks-long occupation.

In her lawsuit, Cox says she wishes to "assist the people of Harney County to recover lands involved in the Malheur that has wrongfully been taken from them."

Cox claims in the complaint that expert witnesses have told her "the land titles to the Malheur is seriously clouded, federal government overreach is involved and oppressive government tactics is involved in covering-up and concealing the government overreach involved."

In addition to challenging the government's title to the wildlife refuge, Cox also states she challenges "the ability of the people of Harney County to be able to govern themselves."

The complaint concludes by stating Cox's intent to "restore domestic tranquility" to Harney County.

Prosecutors in the occupiers' trial planned to rest their case Tuesday afternoon, with the defense scheduled to present its case beginning on Wednesday.

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