Utah environmental activist drops appeals

- SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Environmental activist Tim DeChristopher says he's giving up appeals of his two-year prison sentence for bidding on oil-and-gas parcels he couldn't pay for at a federal auction in Utah.
DeChristopher tells The Associated Press he's dropping appeals after being turned back earlier this month at the Denver-based 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals. He has served 14 months of his two-year sentence and will be released in April.
From the start, DeChristopher asserted the government auction in 2008 was illegal and that he was just trying to safeguard wild lands near Utah's national parks from drilling.
DeChristopher says his fate has been sealed by the judicial system.  He believes he's being punished for standing up to what he calls collusion between government and corporations.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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