By Howard Berkes
"By using an undercover agent, they've been able to penetrate this ring of professional looters," Michel adds.
The plea agreements signed by Jeanne and Jerrica Redd, and search warrant affidavits describing the alleged digging, collecting and trafficking of others, shows that the artifacts trade in the region is not benign. Some locals have described it as a family-friendly subculture passed down from generation to generation for a century.
"This is not some sort of harmless Sunday picnic arrowhead hunting that's going on," writer David Roberts says. "It's a full scale black market business. It's really organized crime. This goes far beyond being a hobby."