Salazar Defends Investigation into Artifact Thefts

June 15, 2009 - 5:56 PM
Interior Secretary Ken Salazar says he stands behind the investigation that resulted in the indictments of two dozen people accused of illegally trafficking in ancient artifacts from the Four Corners region.
Park City, Utah (AP) - Interior Secretary Ken Salazar says he stands behind the investigation that resulted in the indictments of two dozen people accused of illegally trafficking in ancient artifacts from the Four Corners region.
 
Responding to a question from The Associated Press on Monday, Salazar says he has no regrets about the investigation and ensuing arrests.
 
On Saturday, Utah's two U.S. senators said they want Congress to investigate the actions of federal agents who arrested 23 of those indicted last week following a two-year undercover investigation. One of the indicted men was found dead in an apparent suicide.
 
The senators said the raid was overkill.
 
Salazar said federal agents were only following laws intended to protect American Indian artifacts from harm.