Return of the rustlers
Cattle rustling appears to be on the rise in Wyoming and other Western states. Kelly Hamilton, a law enforcement supervisor for the Wyoming State Livestock Board, says over 50 rustling incidents have been reported in the state in 1994. The increase stems from high cattle prices, but a major problem, Hamilton says, is that pickup trucks and horse trailers make rustling a quick and easy practice. Cases vary from making off with one or two animals to a recent FBI investigation of an interstate rustling ring. Peter Marble, owner of the 71 Ranch near Deeth in northern Nevada, was out $200,000 after some 200 cattle were stolen. Luckily for Marble, the cows were found by Wyoming and Nevada brand inspectors. The culprit was Marble's former ranch foreman, who allegedly moved the cattle to his ranch near Thermopolis, Wyo. The foreman and his wife are charged with five counts of possession of stolen property in Hot Springs County, Wyo.; federal charges may follow.