“It’s a travesty that our federal government would put Tim on trial when George W. Bush is not being prosecuted,” she said.
The bids had been made during the final drilling auction of the Bush administration.
A filmmaker from Telluride, Colo., filmed the rally for a documentary about DeChristopher.
George Gage said he and his wife spent more than two years on the film, which he hopes will be accepted by Utah’s Sundance Film Festival _ an event founded by actor and director Robert Redford, who also supports DeChristopher.
Federal prosecutors say DeChristopher is the only person ever charged with failing to make good on bids at a lease auction of public lands in Utah. His actions led to higher bids for other parcels, costing hundreds of thousands of dollars for oil men.
Not everyone attending the protest march Monday supported DeChristopher’s actions.
Highland real estate agent Robert Valentine mingled with environmentalists and talked about the need for Utah to use its natural resources to create jobs and fund the state’s schools.
“I want to protect the natural resources. My hobby is hiking,” the 69-year-old Valentine said. “But I think Utah ought to be allowed to have more control over the resources more than we do.”
Hannah said she believes DeChristopher’s actions have been justified because the federal judge turned back the leases.
“He took a moral stand against injustice. … He’s already been effective,” Hannah said. “This case has the potential to be quite historic and pivotal in terms of our rights as citizens to peacefully protest and practice civil disobedience.”
The trial was expected to last until Friday.