Tax dodgers' land for sale; may be booby-trapped

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Tax dodgers' land for sale; may be booby-trapped
FILE - In this June 18, 2007, file photo, Ed Brown, right, and his wife Elaine Brown listen to Ruby Ridge survivor Randy Weaver, center, at their home in in Plainfield, N.H. The tax-evading couple are serving lengthy sentences after being convicted of amassing an arsenal of weapons and holding law enforcement at bay for nine months in 2007. Federal officials are set to auction on Friday, Aug. 15, 2014, the Brown's former fortress-like home sitting on more than 100 acres in Plainfield. Prospective bidders have not been allowed to tour the property. The U.S. Marshals Service cited the possibility of land mines and other explosives buried on the property as a complication. (AP Photo/Jim Cole, File)
FILE - In this June 18, 2007, file photo, Ed Brown, right, and his wife Elaine Brown listen to Ruby Ridge survivor Randy Weaver, center, at their home in in Plainfield, N.H. Federal officials preparing to sell the New Hampshire compound of the tax-evading couple convicted of amassing an arsenal of weapons can't guarantee that explosives and other booby traps aren't hidden on the 103-acre spread. (AP Photo/Jim Cole, File)
FILE - In this Jan. 17, 2007 file photo, Ed Brown stands barricaded in the doorway of his home, saying he is prepared for an armed standoff as he fights tax evasion charges in Plainfield, N.H. Ed and his wife Elaine were convicted in 2009 of amassing weapons, explosives and booby traps and plotting to kill federal agents who came to arrest them. Federal officials preparing to sell the New Hampshire compound of the tax-evading couple convicted of amassing an arsenal of weapons can't guarantee that explosives and other booby traps aren't hidden on the 103-acre spread. (AP Photo/Jim Cole, File)
This June 25, 2013. photo shows the driveway at the entrance of the home of Ed and Elaine Brown in Plainfield, N.H. Federal officials preparing to sell the New Hampshire compound of the tax-evading couple convicted of amassing an arsenal of weapons can't guarantee that explosives and other booby traps aren't hidden on the 103-acre spread. (AP Photo/Jim Cole)
FILE - In This June 18, 2007, file photo, tax evaders Ed and Elaine Brown talk to reporters during a news conference in Plainfield, N.H. On Thursday July 9, 2009, the Browns were convicted on all counts of plotting to kill federal agents during a nine-month standoff at their fort-like home in rural New Hampshire. (AP Photo/Jim Cole, File)
**FILE** Ed and Elaine Brown talk to reporters during a news conference in Plainfield, N.H., in this June 18, 2007 file photo. According to the U.S. Marshall's office, the couple was arrested without incident Thursday evening Oct. 4, 2007 after refusing to turn themselves into authorities following an April sentencing for tax evasion (AP Photo/Jim Cole, FILE)
FILE - This June 18, 2007, file photo shows the home of Ed and Elaine Brown in Plainfield, N.H. The tax-evading couple are serving lengthy sentences after being convicted of amassing an arsenal of weapons and holding law enforcement at bay for nine months in 2007. Federal officials are set to auction on Friday, Aug. 15, 2014, the Brown's former fortress-like home sitting on more than 100 acres in Plainfield. Prospective bidders have not been allowed to tour the property. The U.S. Marshals Service cited the possibility of land mines and other explosives buried on the property as a complication. (AP Photo/Jim Cole, File)
New Hampshire state police check a driver on Stage Rd. in Plainfield, NH., Thursday, June 7, 2007. Federal authorities indicated Thursday they will not raid the home of two convicted tax evaders but did serve a warrant to seize property they own in a neighboring town. The warrant was served in that town and authorities had no contact with the couple at their fortified compound on a hilltop in rural Plainfield, U.S. Marshal Stephen Monier. Thursday morning, neighbors reported armed police and at least one armored vehicle near Ed and Elaine Brown's 110-acre property. (AP Photo/Cheryl Senter)
Half Hollow Dental Center in West Lebanon, N.H., owned by convicted tax evaders Ed and Elaine Brown of Plainfield, N.H., was seized by the U.S. Marshals Office seized Thursday, June 7, 2007. (AP Photo/Cheryl Senter)
Reporters get ready for a news conference with Ed and Elaine Brown in Plainfield, N.H., Monday, June 18, 2007. The Browns have been staying in their home since being convicted of tax evasion. Residents want the Browns' circus to end before their small Connecticut River town becomes the next Ruby Ridge or Waco. (AP Photo/Jim Cole)
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CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - The New Hampshire compound of a tax-evading couple convicted of amassing an arsenal of weapons and holding federal law enforcement officials at bay for months is being sold at auction - even as prospective buyers have been kept off the land because it could still be booby-trapped.

The auction of Ed and Elaine Brown's fortress-like home on 100 acres in Plainfield is scheduled for Friday afternoon at U.S. District Court in Concord. The minimum required bid is $250,000. Elaine Brown's dental office in Lebanon also is being auctioned.

Prospective bidders have not been allowed to tour the property, and last year, the U.S. Marshals Service cited the possibility of land mines and other explosives buried on the property as a complication.

The court has ruled that the Browns and any heirs have no claims to the properties or any assets from their sale. If the properties sell, the first entities to be paid would be the municipalities of Plainfield and Lebanon, which are owed back property taxes.

The Browns, who do not recognize the federal government's authority to tax its citizens, had a nine-month standoff with authorities in 2007 after they were sentenced to five years in prison for tax evasion. U.S. marshals posing as supporters finally arrested them peacefully.

While the Browns kept federal marshals at bay, they welcomed a parade of anti-tax and anti-government supporters including Randy Weaver, whose wife and son were killed along with a deputy U.S. marshal in a 1992 shootout on Weaver's property in Ruby Ridge, Idaho.

They were convicted in 2009 of amassing weapons, explosives and booby traps and plotting to kill federal agents who came to arrest them. Ed and Elaine Brown, both in their 70s, are serving 37 and 35 years in prison.

As of a year ago, numerous federal agencies with explosive detection equipment and dogs still couldn't ensure the land was free of booby traps. But the hilltop house and the grounds up to the tree line have been searched extensively and have deemed free of improvised explosive devices and other booby traps.

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