4 Ala. men fined for stealing cultural artifacts

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Four Alabama men have been fined in federal court after stealing cultural artifacts from Tennessee Valley Authority reservoir property.

According to a news release from the TVA, Roger Fountain, Heath Dubois and John Bates pleaded guilty to violating the Archaeological Resource Protection Act for thefts at Pickwick Reservoir, on the Tennessee-Alabama border.

A fourth man, Matthew Buttrman, pleaded guilty to theft of government property for stealing Native American relics from Alabama's Guntersville Reservoir.

The four men were sentenced in federal court in Huntsville last week to serve one year of probation, and each was ordered to pay a $500 fine.

TVA executive David Jolley said the utility has a team of investigators that works hard to protect the region's cultural history from thieves.

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