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The Madera Tribune

Reid appeals decision on Chukchansi squabble

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webmaster | 06/15/13

Morris Reid, one of three faction heads claiming leadership over the Picayune Rancheria of Chukchansi Indians, filed an appeal Friday to a Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) decision that would have given Nancy Ayala the tribe’s top spot.

Reid and Ayala, along with third contender Reggie Lewis, have each claimed for years that they are the tribe’s true council chairperson in a dispute that has seen several violent confrontations, including a riot in February of 2012.

In May, the BIA sent a letter to Reid that denied his leadership stake and instead verified that the tribe’s Dec. 1 election was valid, thus giving Ayala control over the tribe and its casino that brings in an estimated $9 million a month.

Reid had 30 days to file an appeal to that decision, and his attorney James Qaqundah said that Reid’s Friday appeal rendered the BIA’s decision invalid under federal regulations...


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