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How name game failed to pay off for former inmates

By Jay F. Marks Modified: November 30, 2007 at 5:28 am •  Published: November 30, 2007
The name game didn't pay off for three former inmates at the federal prison in El Reno.

Russell Dean Landers, 56; Barry Dean Bischof, 60; and Clayton Heath Albers, 61, were convicted Tuesday by a federal jury in Oklahoma City of conspiracy and extortion.

The jury deliberated for about 2 hours before finding the men guilty after a two-day trial.

They will be sentenced in a few months. Their latest convictions carry up to 16 years in prison.

Landers, Bischof and Albers had been accused of demanding exorbitant sums of money from officials at the El Reno prison for using their names, which they claimed had been copyrighted.

Men threaten to sue
Members of the anti-government Patriot movement advocate obtaining common-law copyrights in their names and threaten to sue if the government uses those names.

Landers was a member of the Montana Freemen during an 81-day FBI standoff in 1996 before ending up in prison.

The men billed prison officials millions of dollars for using their names without permission in late 2003 and early 2004, and then recruited someone with experience in repossessing property to help them with their scheme, according to court papers.

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