A New York judge today rejected Nancy Ayala's argument that she is entitled to continue taking casino revenue to support her faction's activities, and prohibited all future disbursements to Ayala unless approved by Chukchansi Chairman Reggie Lewis.
In a conference call this afternoon, the Honorable Justice Schweitzer of the New York Supreme Court clarified that Ayala is prohibited from taking money from the casino as she has done for several months without any oversight in violation of the Tribe's Indenture agreement. The clarification was necessary after Ayala unlawfully seized $1.8 million in casino revenue without approval by Chairman Lewis. The money and all other expenditures will be subject to an accounting in September when a hearing is scheduled with the judge.
"This is another major victory for us in court as the judge recognized that Nancy Ayala cannot continue to use the casino as a personal bank to write checks to her family and small group of supporters," said Chairman Lewis. "This is about protecting the best interests of the Chukchansi people and ensuring casino revenue is used appropriately to benefit all Tribal members. We will continue to press for a strict accounting of all expenditures by Ayala as she has no doubt been taking many more millions of dollars for several months. That has come to an end now thanks to the judge's statement today."
In addition to the significant victory with the judge today, attorneys for the Lewis Council also filed actions last week in the New York Supreme Court against Ayala, Tracey Brechbuehl, Karen Wynn, and Charles Sargosa for conduct in violation of the Federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act ("RICO") and the Tribe's Indenture agreement. The cross-claims allege that Ayala led a racketeering scheme that seized profits from the Chukchansi Casino and fraudulently distributed money to members of the Ramirez and Wyatt families, which she claims are the only legitimate members of the Tribe. According to the court filing, Ayala installed a security force consisting of gang members and convicted felons that intimidated and threatened anyone who questioned her actions.
The cross-claims explain how Ayala attempted to remove all members of the Tribal Council except herself using a petition signed by just 14 individuals. With a valid petition requiring signatures from 30 percent of the tribal membership, Ayala effectively attempted to disenroll hundreds of Tribal members to ensure that only her and her family members would benefit from the Tribe's revenue.
Ayala, Brechbuehl, Wynn and Sargosa are all required to appear in New York in August and September to answer questions, under the penalty of perjury, regarding the allegations.
This shit is getting old. When is the judge or BIA going to open there eyes to realize she has been hurting the Chukchansi tribe & benefitting her & her family only?
People open your EYES! Your going to be dis-enrolled as long as Ayala has control.
One corrupt group vs. another corrupt group... good one.
BIA is worthless...or less than worthless.
When are the people going to rise up against both these groups? Stand up, kick them out.
Yes the BIA is nothing more then record keepers and if they have any power or need to enforce their own rulings they don't use them. They just sit back and watch the tribes destroy themselves. Either because they got orders from above way above or they consider the tribal councils to be the tribe when it's actually the general tribe that makes up the majority and is the real tribe not a small group that has taken over and held on to power PALA,
PECHANGA, CHUKCHANSI. When the BIA was created they had a purpose to make sure tribes followed a government to government relationship and now the tribes have become so powerful they do as they please under the control of greedy,thieving, liars.
Is Ayala and Lewis REALLY the best that Chukchansi has to offer?
Why should any tribe be under the power of the BIA. I am glad the BIA has no enforcement power over tribal lands and communities. Tribal sovereignty is the ability to have self-government and to operate tribal governance with bad or good consequences.
Yes tribes should have sovereignty but the BIA is suppose to be a watch dog of sorts and step in only when tribal leaders break tribal laws or tribal constitution which happens a lot. When this happens the ones your suppose to complain to are the leaders themselves breaking these tribal laws. So in these cases we do need the BIA as an outside unbiased entity to step in. Problem is they don't and allow these law breaking leaders to run amuck unchecked.
Regardless of who is in power, the good or the bad, should not dictate the "power" of the BIA to regulate tribal internal matters. Each tribal community needs to decide for themselves what they need to do, through the election of tribal leaders and/or the establishment of tribal law, not some watered down puppet system that our ancestors fought to prevent happening. Tribal corruption needs to be handled through tribal law and tribal governance, not through bureaucracy and the US federal government. The BIA and the US government pushed their version of law and politics on our people a century ago, why should we yield to that power, when a lot of people suffered and died to prevent that from happening then, why do it now. Tough it out and decide tribal politics through tribal governance on tribal law terms, for the community and by the community.
The "Community" or General council "the tribe itself" no longer has any control over the Trible Council. The Gov't continues to listen to both Reggie and Nancy, despite both taking control by bending or completely breaking their Tribes Own Constitution. How do you take back your own tribe from once elected Council members who will hold on to their positions any way they can. They use the tribes money to further their own agendas, and to keep control. The BIA needs to reach out to the Whole Tribe, they have their names, and get some Idea what the people want. Reggie and Nancy have never done anything that didn't further their own version of what (or how small) the tribe should be. how many millions do they get to waste While keeping their books private from their Tribal Members. The per cap isn't small because theirs too many members, it's small because the elected Council waste vast amounts of money and always have. Reggie and Nancy are just greedier than most.
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