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BANISHMENT ENDS; 2 ALASKAN TEENS WILL NOW DO TIME

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A judge sentenced two Indian teenagers to prison for an attack on a pizza delivery driver, cutting short an experiment in justice in which the youths were banished to remote Alaskan islands.

Snohomish County Judge John Allendoerfer said Tuesday he was ending the yearlong judicial rehabilitation experiment because of "flaws which unfortunately threaten its credibility and integrity."The judge said he saw dramatic changes for the good in Simon Roberts and Adrian Guthrie, but there were too many problems with banishment - including reports of unauthorized travel and infighting among Alaska tribal judges.

"It is time to end this experiment while it can still be ended on a positive note," Allendoerfer said.

The experiment was to have run for another six months, but the judge had reserved the right to recall the 18-year-olds at any time.

Allendoerfer sentenced Roberts to four years and seven months in prison, and Guthrie to two years and seven months. Both were credited with about a year they spent in jail before being banished to separate islands in southeast Alaska to undergo traditional Tlingit rehabilitation.

The judge also ordered them to jointly pay about $36,000 restitution to Tim Whittlesey, the driver they robbed and severely beat in August 1993. Whittlesey has said he suffers dizziness, headaches, hearing loss and balance problems from the beating.

Roberts and Guthrie were 16 at the time of the robbery. Roberts got the longer term because he wielded the bat.

"I think the judge made a good decision," a somber Roberts said after the hearing, adding that he had always expected to serve prison time.

Guthrie declined comment.

Prior to Allendoerfer's decision, both teens said they had benefited from their banishment.

Roberts told the judge that at first he thought the banishment would be "like a camping trip." But as time went on and he learned to fend for himself in the wilderness, he said he grew up "mentally, emotionally, spiritually and physically."

Guthrie likewise thanked Allendoerfer. He said the experiment gave him a chance "to become that which I need to be - a man."