April 15, 2021


Beyond law

Treasure Hunter Pleads Responsible to Digging in Yellowstone

A Utah gentleman who went digging for buried treasure inside of Yellowstone National Park has pleaded guilty to two felonies and may well now face years in jail and thousands of pounds in fines, a federal prosecutor in Wyoming declared on Tuesday.

The male, Rodrick Dow Craythorn, 52, pleaded guilty on Monday to triggering extra than $1,000 worthy of of damages to federal residence as effectively as excavating or trafficking in archaeological means when digging in Fort Yellowstone Cemetery, which is in the park, from Oct. 1, 2019, by May 24, 2020, Mark Klaassen, the U.S. lawyer in Wyoming, explained in a news release.

Mr. Craythorn had been wanting for treasure concealed by Forrest Fenn a lot more than a 10 years back, Mr. Klaassen said.

“The hunt for the Forrest Fenn treasure was often considered as a harmless diversion, but in this circumstance it led to significant destruction to vital public assets,” Mr. Klaassen said in the assertion. “The defendant permit his quest for discovery override respect for the regulation.”

The crimes to which Mr. Craythorn pleaded guilty carry mixed optimum penalties of up to 12 several years in jail and $270,000 in fines, according to prosecutors. He is scheduled to be sentenced on March 17.

Christopher Grant Humphrey, a lawyer for Mr. Craythorn, declined to comment on Tuesday.

In a 2010 reserve, Mr. Fenn, an eccentric artwork supplier, stated he experienced hidden a bronze upper body loaded with gold nuggets and jewels. He encouraged persons to obtain it, and many have tried out. Countless numbers of men and women searched for the treasure, and at the very least two folks died striving to obtain it.

Mr. Fenn died on Sept. 7 at his residence in Santa Fe, N.M., just 3 months just after he claimed an individual had finally discovered the treasure chest, which held, by his estimate, $2 million value of gold nuggets, sapphires, diamonds, pre-Columbian artifacts and other riches.

At the time, the individual who located the treasure disclosed their identity to Mr. Fenn, but remained anonymous to the public. Immediately after the discovery was announced, a attorney in Chicago filed a lawsuit towards Mr. Fenn and the nameless discoverer, and explained she experienced been painstakingly wanting for the treasure when a person hacked her cellphone and stole information that led them to the trove.

Very last thirty day period, Jack Stuef, a 32-year-outdated professional medical pupil from Michigan, publicly recognized himself as the man or woman who located the treasure.

In June, Mr. Fenn said on his web site that the treasure “was less than a cover of stars in the lush, forested vegetation of the Rocky Mountains and had not moved from the spot where by I hid it much more than 10 several years in the past.” He did not give a exact place.

Mr. Fenn had said he had buried the treasure and inspired the hunt in purchase to really encourage persons to “get off their couches.”