Criminal charges have been dismissed against a Nevada rancher and his sons accused of leading an armed uprising against federal authorities.

Chief U.S. District Judge Gloria Navarro ruled Monday in Las Vegas that federal prosecutors acted with willful disregard for constitutional due process rights of 71-year-old Cliven Bundy, sons Ryan and Ammon Bundy, and Montana militia leader Ryan Payne.

After the decision was announced, Bundy walked out of the courthouse a free man.

Supporters cheered as Bundy hugged his wife. He says that he had been jailed for 700 days as a "political prisoner" for refusing to acknowledge federal authority over the land around his cattle ranch.

A judge who found what she called "flagrant misconduct" by prosecutors.

The collapse of the case is a stunning failure for the U.S. attorney's office in Nevada.

Newly appointed Interim U.S. Attorney Dayle Elieson didn't immediately respond on whether the government will take the case to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

The judge last month declared a mistrial after a month of proceedings for the same reasons. Navarro severely criticized prosecutors for failing to properly turn over evidence to their lawyers.

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