Corey Lequieu becomes first Oregon standoff defendant sent to prison in conspiracy case
They could have piled on more charges including felon in possession of a gun but they didn't in exchange for a guilty plea.Corey Lequieu became the first defendant Tuesday to be sentenced in the federal conspiracy case stemming from the armed takeover of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in January.
U.S. District Judge Anna J. Brown sent Lequieu to prison for 2 ½ years followed by three years of supervised release. Lequieu, in custody in the Multnomah County Jail, also must pay restitution in an amount to be determined later.
In May, Lequieu, 46, became the first of 26 standoff defendants charged with conspiracy to plead guilty. He admitted to impeding federal employees through threats, intimidation or force from working at the refuge outside Burns.
The conspiracy charge carries a maximum sentence of six years in prison, but federal prosecutors recommended that Lequieu serve less time as part of a plea agreement and under sentencing guidelines. Assistant U.S. Attorney Craig Gabriel said the government considered that Lequieu was the first in the case to take responsibility when making the offer.
Brown agreed that the government's recommendation was fair.
Gabriel dismissed Lequieu's remaining count of possessing a firearm in a federal facility. The government, both in Oregon and Nevada, also agreed not to file felon in possession of a firearm charges against Lequieu, Gabriel said. Lequieu, of Fallon, Nevada, had ties to the 2014 Cliven Bundy standoff near Bunkerville.
Lequieu's defense attorney, Ramon Pagan, told the court that he and his client were grateful that they reached an agreement with the government without Lequieu agreeing to testify against other defendants in the case.