U.S. District Judge Anna J. Brown refused Wednesday to halt her order to have Ammon Bundy and four co-defendants transferred to Nevada on April 13 to face federal indictment there, leaving the matter before the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals should the higher court step in.
Brown said she believes the narrow tailoring of her order -- that Ammon Bundy, Ryan Bundy, Ryan Payne, Brian Cavalier and Blaine Cooper be taken to Nevada to make their initial court appearances in Las Vegas and then return to Oregon by April 25 -- won't cause the defendants "irreparable harm.''
Defense lawyers had urged Brown to put a hold on her order until a higher court can hear their appeal, arguing that the transfer will impair their ability to effectively represent their clients and prepare for what's now shaping up to be a September trial in Oregon.
Defense lawyer Tom Coan said it's also been difficult for him to speak with his client, Pete Santilli, who was transferred from Oregon to Nevada last Tuesday. Santilli's girlfriend, Deborah Reynolds, said in a statement read in court that Santilli gets only one to two hours out of his cell a day and that reaching his lawyer by phone has been challenging.