The arson convictions of Dwight Hammond and his son Steven for torching public lands was at the center of an armed takeover in 2016 of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon, which led to a 41-day armed standoff with federal authorities. The assault was led by militant rancher brothers Ryan and Ammon Bundy.
Despite the record of violence, Trump Interior Secretary David Bernhardt granted the Hammonds a new grazing permit on Trump’s last day in office. The permit would have allowed the ranchers’ livestock to use public land for 10 years.
The Biden administration blocked the permit Friday, a day after environmental groups sued, arguing the Trump government ignored legal requirements, reported Oregon Public Radio. The Biden administration cited the same concerns in its notice rescinding the permit.