Judge orders Nooksack tribal clerk to accept documents in fight over members’ disenrollment

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DEMING, Wash.  (AP) — Tribal appeals judges have ordered a Nooksack Tribal Court clerk to accept filings from lawyers fighting to prevent tribal members from being dis-enrolled.

A panel of the Nooksack Tribal Court of Appeals ordered Betty Leathers to accept the documents by Wednesday, explain why shouldn’t have to, or be jailed for contempt of court.

Nooksack Chairman Bob Kelly told The Bellingham Herald today that the orders were invalid.

In February, the tribal council passed a resolution disbarring lawyer Gabriel Galanda and other lawyers representing members who face tribal disenrollment.  In March, it also fired the judge who ruled that the council had denied Galanda due process when it disbarred him.

Galanda and other lawyers filed a motion in tribal court in March to challenge their disbarment.

The appellate panel noted that the documents were initially received by the court but then rejected days later.


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