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Man gets 24 years in prison for fire that killed 12 condors

Justice (FILE)
Posted at 11:15 AM, May 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-19 14:15:49-04

SALINAS, Calif. (AP)  — A man who started a 2020 wildfire that killed 12 endangered California condors and seriously injured a firefighter has been sentenced to 24 years in prison.

Ivan Gomez was sentenced Wednesday in Monterey County.

He was found guilty of 16 felony counts, including arson and animal cruelty.

Prosecutors say Gomez told them he set the August 2020 Big Sur Dolan fire while illegally growing marijuana in the Los Padres National Forest.

The blaze northwest of Los Angeles injured several firefighters, one seriously, destroyed 10 homes and burned down a condor sanctuary.