Susan has a greatly detailed story on IETAN CONSULTING, a lobbying firm run by Holly Cook Macarro, the wife of Pechanga Chairman Mark Macarro, to which that tribe pays $250,000 per year. That led to Macarro being the subject of a recall attempt.
Tribal attorney Howard Dickstein is facing accusations eerily similar to those which dogged Republican super-lobbyist Jack Abramoff.
The complaint the Rumsey Indian Rancheria filed against Dickstein in 2007 in the U.S. Superior Court in Yolo County, California can be found here:
Of particular note is that a year after the case was filed, Rumsey was picked up Ietan Consulting, whose lobbyists gaslit Abramoff and staged the Senate Indian Affairs Committee hearings where the Republican super-lobbyist was set up for criminal indictment on trumped up charges. Ietan’s lobbyists and its partners coached dissidents among Abramoff’s casino-rich clients to lodge false allegations against Abramoff in the media and before Congress.
Once Abramoff was removed from power, Ietan and its partners immediately commenced representation of his casino-rich clients and cashed in. The allegations could easily have been refuted, but the accusers were banking on the fact that paperwork would be difficult to secure, ensuring that their false narrative prevailed.
Ietan’s representation of the Rumsey in 2008 is documented here:
The complaint against Dickstein trots out the tired narrative that this tribal attorney exploited the poor hapless Indians, who are always cast as victims in Ietan’s manufactured scandals. “The lawsuit is about greed and betrayal,” the complaint alleges, taking its cue from McCain’s Final Report on Abramoff’s tribal lobbying. “The Rumsey Band of Wintun Indians…has discovered that its long-time (and now former) legal counsel and financial advisor breached their trust obligations and violated duties of the most basic and indeed, sacred, kind.”
The discoveries were made “after terminating” the attorney at which time the tribe retained Kroll & Associates to review his work. Upon further review, the complaint alleges that Dickestein “placed his own interests and the interests of others ahead of the tribe’s in order to enrich (himself) at the tribe’s expense.”
According to the complaint, Dickstein allegedly betrayed the tribe’s trust by involving the financially unsophisticated Rumsey in “complicated investments and transactions in which the business arrangements were more favorable to others than the tribe and which were allegedly fraught with self-dealing and conflicts of interests (he) failed to disclose.”
Dickstein also was alleged to have used tribal assets for personal purposes without having sought permission or informed the Tribal Council the full extent of his compensation.
In a similar vein, during the Abramoff scandal, Ietan-backed dissidents accused the lobbyist and his partner, Michael Scanlon, of having hidden their financial arrangements from tribal leaders who were fully knowledgeable and agreeable to them.
Read the full story at Susan Bradford’s site