TUCSON, AZ (KOLD News 13) - Four volunteers with the humanitarian group No More Deaths were in court Friday, March 1 to be sentenced on misdemeanor charges.
Natalie Hoffman, Oona Holcomb, Madeline Huse and Zaachila Orozco-McCormick were convicted Jan. 18 on charges of trespassing and abandoning property on public land. Hoffman was also convicted of operating a vehicle in a wilderness area.
All four received $250 fines and were placed on probation for 15 months.
“I commend the excellent work by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service officers and their commitment to preserving the lands Congress has designated as national wildlife refuges," First Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth A. Strange said in a news release. "Our office will continue to review potential violations on federal lands on a case-by-case basis and bring charges, as appropriate.”
They were in a group of nine volunteers that left food and water for border crossers in the Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge in August 2017. They have said it was their religious belief to help those in need.
Criminal charges were dropped against four other volunteers Feb. 21. Caitlin Deighan, Zoe Anderson, Logan Hollarsmith and Rebecca Grossman-Richeimer were fined $250.
Scott Warren, the ninth defendant, is still awaiting trial. According to Cronkite News, Warren is facing more serious charges, including harboring undocumented immigrants.
No More Deaths organized a march Friday afternoon. The peaceful demonstration was held outside the DeConcini Federal Courthouse on Congress Street in downtown Tucson.
The group said its mission is “to end death and suffering in the Mexico–US borderlands through civil initiative: people of conscience working openly and in community to uphold fundamental human rights.”