Eastern Band Establishes Cherokee Identity Protection Committee

Here. An excerpt:

There are three federally recognized Cherokee tribes in the United States including the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (NC), the Cherokee Nation (OK) and the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians (OK).  According to a list compiled in March by the Cherokee Nation, there are 212 fabricated groups claiming to be Cherokee tribes. “Fraud List” compiled by Cherokee Nation

Some of those groups are from areas thousands of miles from traditional Cherokee territory including the Northwest Cherokee Deer Clan in Oregon.  And, several aren’t even in the United States at all such as the Chewah Cherokee Nation in Manitoba, Canada.

The EBCI Tribal Council passed a resolution – No. 6 (2011) – during annual council on Thursday, Oct. 13 to establish the Cherokee Identity Protection Committee.

“It’s something that we’ve had an ongoing issue with and it’s something that’s important,” said Big Cove Rep. Perry Shell who submitted the resolution passed on Thursday.  “Many times people are taking our identity.” Continue reading

11th Circuit Affirmed Conviction of Fake Indians Selling Tribal Membership to Undocumented Aliens

Here are the materials in United States v. Watson:


Watson Opening Brief

US Brief in Watson

Watson Reply

Lower courts materials here.

Fake Indian Alert: Utah Supreme Court Addresses Fake Tribal Court Orders

Here is the opinion in DFI Properties v. GR 2 Enterprises (link) (DFIProp110210).

An excerpt:

On the morning of the scheduled conference, Mr. Granados, acting without counsel, filed three documents with the district court. These documents, an “Order for Hearing to Show Cause,” an “Order to Stay Proceedings,” and a “Petition for Hearing to Show Cause, Stay of Proceedings, and for Declaratory Relief,” were signed by Judge Clayton of the “First Federal District Court, Western Region.” This court is neither a state court nor a federal court. Rather, it is a tribal court of the NATO Indian Nation. The documents asserted that Mr. Granados was a member of the tribe and that, pursuant to certain aspects of federal law, tribal courts have exclusive jurisdiction over matters involving tribe members. Based on this purported exclusive jurisdiction, the documents ordered the district court to stay the proceedings pending resolution of the matter in tribal court.

Mr. Granados received Rule 11 sanctions.

Vampyre Nation Gets Indian History and Law All Wrong … Unsurprisingly

Here’s a very silly complaint (via ATL and Trent) filed by the Vampyre Nation, something I suspect would be subject to a Rule 11 sanction. Of note, on the last paragraph of page 5, the “Nation” asserts as “precedence” for their claim to sovereignty federal Indian law:

The American Indians have their own Reservations and land supplied to them by the U.S., as well as their own laws and government (even though the Indians sided with the British Government against American Founding Fathers during the American Revolutionary War);

While I personally have nothing against the Vampyre Nation, I wonder how it is that the complaint can seem both innocently ignorant of basic Indian affairs while at the same time sound crazily patriotic, like those old Michigan Militia guys. Hmmm…I smell tax protesters….

Fake Indian Tribe Wins Court Case in Minnesota

The Minnesota Court of Appeals reversed a trial court judgment excising financing statements filed in Minnesota by a fake Indian tribe — Pembina Nation Little Shell Band (not to be confused with the real Little Shell Band). Here is the unpublished opinion, which does not opine on the merits of the filings. But keep in mind, the underlying “tribal court” decision in which these filings arose stated that the individuals were “as agents acting in concert with the Commissioner of Revenue of the Minnesota Department of Revenue” — classic crazy tax protester language.

Stevens v. McClellan — Fake Indian Tribes Again

Yet another claim brought by Dale Stevens and the fake Indian tribe Wampanoag Nation, Tribe of Grayhead, Wolf Band, properly dismissed by the federal district court. Below is the magistrate judge’s report and recommentation, adopted by the district court on Nov. 20.


Indian Fraud Violates RICO

From Indianz:

Three men who created a fake tribe at an Arby’s restaurant are guilty of violating federal racketeering laws, a judge ruled last week.

The “Wampanoag Nation, Tribe of Grayhead, Wolf Band” and its founders filed numerous legal claims against officials in Utah. The targets responded with a countersuit under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act. Judge Stephen P. Friot agreed that James W. Burbank, Martin T. Campbell, Dale N. Stevens, and Thomas Smith violated the law. He said the men used their fake tribe and other organizations to try and intimidate government officials. The group is not in any way affiliated with the two federally recognized Wampanoag tribes in Massachusetts.

We’ve written about these guys before (here).

Continue reading