Twelve people were arrested Thursday in connection with a 2014 armed protest on the Bundy Ranch in Nevada — including two more of rancher Cliven Bundy’s sons and a New Hampshire man linked to Donald Trump's campaign.
The arrests marked the first law-enforcement sweep since Bundy, two other sons and two other men were charged last month in the armed confrontation with federal agents. The five previously charged were already in custody when they were indicted.
In a dramatic showdown, federal agents who seized Bundy’s cattle over unpaid grazing fees backed off after being confronted with armed protesters and snipers on Aug. 12, 2014.
"This investigation began the day after the assault against federal law enforcement officers and continues to this day," U.S. Attorney for the District of Nevada Daniel Bogden said in a statement. "We will continue to work to identify the assaulters and their role in the assault and the aftermath, in order to ensure that justice is served."
A federal grand jury in Nevada indicted 14 people in all on charges of conspiracy to commit an offense against the United States and other counts, federal prosecutors said. Two of those indicted Thursday were already in custody in Oregon.
Bundy sons Melvin Bundy, 41, and David Bundy, 39, were arrested and charged, as was Gerald "Jerry" DeLemus of New Hampshire, who in 2015 was named in a press release as a co-chair of a "Veterans for Trump" coalition in the state.
The Union Leader newspaper in Manchester also reported that he is co-chair.
The Trump campaign did not respond to questions from NBC News Thursday evening about DeLemus' arrest, and a call to the DeLemus home was not returned.
DeLemus is charged with travelling to Nevada to answer Cliven Bundy’s "call-to-arms," but he was too late and missed the Aug. 12 confrontation, federal prosecutors said.
The indictment says DeLemus "established armed checkpoints and security patrols" to prevent the recovery of the cattle.
About two dozen supporters gave DeLemus a standing ovation as he appeared in court Thursday, The Associated Press reported. DeLemus' wife, New Hampshire State Rep. Susan DeLemus, said she was working to hire a private attorney to represent her husband.
Former GOP state chair and tea party activist Jack Kimball said outside court that "This is not my America. It's up to us to get it back." He said of DeLemus' arrest, "This is our Waterloo. Jerry is our Waterloo."
The Aug. 12 armed confrontation involved snipers allegedly taking elevated positions against federal agents, and ended with the government being forced to retreat.
Two other sons of Cliven Bundy, Ammon and Ryan, were previously indicted for their alleged roles in the confrontation on the Bundy Ranch.
They are jailed in Oregon after leading a weeks-long armed occupation of a federal wildlife refuge in that state, in protest of what they called federal overreach and federal control of public land.