Correction 3-13-15: According to a correction from the Tribe’s attorney only 6 of the 19 defendants are current tribal members. It is unclear whether the misreported 13 were part of the 76 tribal memberships that were suspended on April 12, 2014 because they “…have no familial ties to the Paskenta Band.”
One faction of an Indian tribe is accusing another of squandering millions of dollars from the profits generated at their Northern California Rolling Hills Casino. A federal suit has been filed by the Paskenta Band of Nomlaki Indians against former leaders and members who are accused of spending $17 million on tickets to events, private jets, lavish vacations and custom cars. The lawsuit alleges that the tribe has invested more than $90 million in property, unproven start-up companies and gold. The lawsuit, spanning 117 pages, names 19 defendants, four of which were former leaders.
In addition, the former leaders are accused of mounting armed attacks against a rival faction on a road that leads to the casino. This action was an attempt to regain control of the casino. The defendants are also accused of launching a cyber-attack to cover up criminal activity. According to Courthouse News, in June 2014 the state of California sued the Paskenta Band of Nomlaki Indians, seeking “emergency and other appropriate relief to prevent an imminent threat to the public health and safety.”
It is not known if the sued parties have obtained legal counsel and no authorities have been available to offer comments on the issue so far. This latest lawsuit marks another chapter in an ongoing fight over the casino, which is located in Corning, about two hours from Sacramento.
The casino makes over $100 million annually and provides about $54,000 to each of its 300 members each year.