RENO, Nev. (AP) — A federal appeals court is siding with the U.S. government in a decades-old legal battle over livestock grazing rights in Nevada.

In addition to overturning an earlier ruling in favor of Nevada ranchers, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals strongly admonished a district judge in Reno for abusing his power and exhibiting personal bias against U.S. land managers.

In a pair of opinions issued Friday, the appellate court in San Francisco ruled the late Wayne Hage and his family were guilty of trespassing cattle on federal land illegally without a grazing permit and should be subject to fines. It also concluded U.S. District Judge Robert Clive Jones had no legal basis to find employees of the Bureau of Land Management and Forest Service in contempt of court for doing their jobs.

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