The transaction between fugitive Rebecca M. (Bree) Robbins and a Columbus couple was for more than the 35 cattle and 40 calves that were stolen from Wilbur Rakow of rural Neligh.
According to Antelope County Sheriff Bob Moore, Lawrence and Linda Klink of Columbus had agreed to purchase 80 head of cattle from Robbins.
"The Klinks told us they wanted up to 80 head, and there were still cattle in the catch pen to get on a second trip," Moore said.
Robbins, 22 of Lyons and formerly of Antelope County, and Benjamin Johnson, 27 of St. Edward, are both wanted on three felony accounts in Antelope County and one felony account in Boone County connected with the cattle theft that occurred between Feb. 24 and June 24. Additional charges may be filed, Moore said.
Moore said the Klinks were not involved and will not face charges.
"At this point in the investigation, the Antelope County and Platte County authorities have determined the Klinks were victim of a scam and not willing participants," Moore said.
He said the Klinks paid $16,000 in cash and check installments to Robbins over several weeks.
"They thought it was legitimate and were led to believe (Robbins') dad was making her get rid of the cattle and wouldn't graze them any longer. She told them she didn't want the money all in the same year for tax issues," Moore said.
He added, "This is the way most scams work and people give money to someone promising more money. It was too good to be true. Basically, they bought into a horrible scam that happened over numerous weeks."
Moore said the investigation into the whereabouts of Robbins, who has had five arrest warrants filed against her over the years, and Johnson is continuing. As of Monday morning, neither has been apprehended.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the Antelope County Sheriff's Department at 402-887-4840.
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