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Charges laid in looting of Four Corners burial sites

A ring of grave robbers have been charged with looting Native American burial sites in the Four Corners area of the US, a region that consists of southwest Colorado, northwest New Mexico, northeast Arizona and southeast Utah.

Roughly 250 artifacts estimated to be worth more than $335,000 allegedly were stolen by the ring, according to the Interior Department. The artifacts include Anasazi pottery, created by Native Americans centuries ago, as well as ceremonial masks and a buffalo headdress.

An undercover investigation into the ring’s activities has been going on for two years, and included agents from the Interior Department’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and FBI as well as U.S. marshals.

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