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Nevada man gets 6 months in ancient rock art theft

Pahrump, Nevada (AP) April 2011

A Nevada man has been sentenced to six months in federal prison for moving a 300-pound ancient rock art petroglyph from the Spring Mountains National Recreation Area to his Pahrump front yard.

Court records show that 58-year-old Michael Cook is due to surrender June 6 following sentencing March 30 on his guilty plea to felony violation of the Archaeological Resources Protection Act.

The Las Vegas Sun reports that Senior U.S. District Judge Edward C. Reed Jr. also sentenced Cook to one year of supervised release.

Prosecutors say Cook volunteered with his wife monitoring archaeological sites on U.S. Forest Service land, and knew he didn’t have permission to remove the boulder petroglyph depicting seven sheep.

Southern Paiute tribe members testified at sentencing that the removal desecrated a worship site.




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