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TRIBAL JUSTICE NEWS
August 20, 2012

CORRUPTION

Three Charged With Defrauding the United Auburn Indian Community of More than $18 Million (U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of California)
U.S. Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced that on Aug. 17, 2012 a federal indictment was made public charging three men in a conspiracy to defraud the United Auburn Indian Community (UAIC).  On August 9, 2012, a federal grand jury indicted Bart Wayne Volen, 53, of San Diego, and Haiku, Hawaii; Greg Scott Baker, 45, of Newcastle, Calif.; and Darrell Patrick Hinz, 47, of Cameron Park, Calif., charging them with conspiring to commit mail and wire fraud and various money laundering charges related to a scheme in 2006 and 2007 to defraud the UAIC during contracting for the construction of a school, a community center, and administrative offices. Volen was arrested on Friday, Aug. 17, 2012, by IRS special agents at San Francisco International Airport.  All three defendants were expected to make their initial appearances in federal court on Monday.  If convicted, the defendants face a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, and a three-year term of supervised release for each count of mail and wire fraud. The maximum statutory penalty for money laundering is 20 years in prison, a $500,000 fine or twice the value of the laundered money, and a three-year term of supervised release for each count.  The charges are only allegations and the defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
http://www.justice.gov/usao/cae/news/docs/2012/08-2012/08-17-12Volen.html

 

DRUG ENFORCEMENT

Federal Indictments Charge Seventeen Defendants for Trafficking Drugs in Lincoln and Otero Counties (U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico)
U.S. Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales, Joseph M. Arabit, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s El Paso Field Division, and DuWayne W. Honahni, Sr., Special Agent in Charge of District IV of the Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Justice Services, announced on Aug. 17, 2012 that 17 individuals are charged with drug trafficking offenses in two federal indictments.  One indictment charges 16 defendants with conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine, cocaine and marijuana in Lincoln County and Otero County, N.M., including the Mescalero Apache Reservation, between Nov. 2011 and Aug. 2012.  The indictment, which includes 27 other drug trafficking and related charges, alleges that members of the conspiracy obtained the drugs they distributed from sources of supply in Los Angeles, Calif., and Los Lunas, N.M.  The 28-count indictment also seeks forfeiture of property and proceeds derived from or involved in the defendants’ illegal activities.  
http://www.justice.gov/usao/nm/pr/index.html

Operation Eagle Eye: Thirteen Individuals Indicted for Drug Trafficking in Jackson and Shannon County (U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota)
U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced on Aug. 9, 2012 that 13 individuals were indicted for drug conspiracy and distribution offenses alleged to have occurred between October 2008 and July 2012.   The charges are a result of Operation Eagle Eye, a controlled substances investigation conducted by the Northern Plains Safe Trails Drug Enforcement Task Force, whose member agencies include the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation, the South Dakota Highway Patrol, the Pierre Police Department, and the Oglala Sioux Tribe – Department of Public Safety.  In addition to Task Force members, other agencies assisting in the arrests were the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, the Martin Police Department, the U.S. Marshal’s Service, the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office.
http://www.justice.gov/usao/sd/pressreleases/RC-2012-08-09-Eagle%20Eye.html

 

ENVIRONMENTAL

Matthew Black Eagle Pleads Guilty in U.S. Federal Court (U.S. Attorney for the District of Montana)
U.S. Attorney Michael W. Cotter announced on Aug. 3, 2012 that Matthew Black Eagle pleaded guilty to storing hazardous waste without a permit.  Black Eagle faces possible penalties of five years in prison, and $50,000 fine for each day of violation.  His sentencing date was set for Nov. 5, 2012.
http://www.justice.gov/usao/mt/pressreleases/20120803152109.html

VIOLENT CRIME

Mission Man Sentenced for Voluntary Manslaughter (U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota)
U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that a Mission, S.D., man charged with Voluntary Manslaughter was sentenced on Aug. 13, 2012 in federal court.  Ronald Kills In Water, 29, was sentenced to 108 months in custody, two years of supervised release, $1000 in restitution, and a $100 special assessment to the Victim Assistance Fund. Kills In Water was indicted by a federal grand jury on November 8, 2011, and pled guilty to the charge on May 23, 2012. The conviction stems from an incident that took place on October 12, 2011, when Kills In Water aided and abetted the beating of the victim, who was on the ground.  The victim was beaten several times, including with a baseball bat.  The victim died as a result of his injuries.

Connecticut Man Pleads Guilty to Unlawful Possession of a Molotov Cocktail (U.S. Attorney for the District of Maine)
U.S. Attorney Thomas E. Delahanty II announced that Alex Glossian, 25, of Meriden, Connecticut, pleaded guilty last week in U.S. District Court in Bangor, Maine, to unlawful possession of a Molotov cocktail, an unregistered destructive device. Court records reveal that on June 2, 2010, Glossian and another individual made “Molotov cocktails” using gasoline and 40 ounce beer bottles. Two of the devices were then lit and thrown through windows at an Indian Island home.  One of the devices was retrieved intact from the house.  The second device ignited after shattering a bedroom window and caused extensive damage.   Glossian faces a maximum sentence of 10 years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine.  
http://www.justice.gov/usao/me/

Waubay Man Charged in Death of Minor (U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota)
U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that a Waubay, South Dakota, man has been indicted by a federal grand jury this week in the death of a minor. Mario Contreras, 34, was indicted by a federal grand jury on Aug. 14, 2012, for Second Degree Murder, Voluntary Manslaughter, Assault Resulting in Serious Bodily Injury to a Child, and Child Abuse.  He appeared before U.S. District Judge Charles B. Kornmann on Aug. 16, 2012, and pleaded not guilty to the indictment.  The maximum penalty upon conviction is life imprisonment and/or a $250,000 fine.  The charges are merely accusations, and Contreras is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. 
http://www.justice.gov/usao/sd/pressreleases/SF-2012-08-17-Contreras.html
 
Navajo Man from Colorado Receives Seven-Year Prison Sentence for Federal Assault Conviction (U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico)
U.S. Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales announced on Aug. 16, 2012 that Steven Haley, 22, an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation who resides in Dolores, Colo., was sentenced to 84 months in prison for his federal assault conviction.  Haley will be on supervised release for a term not to exceed three years after he completes his prison sentence.  Haley also was ordered to pay $4078.54 in restitution to cover his victim’s medical costs.   The conviction was based on a March 5, 2011 incident during which Haley shot another Navajo man with a rifle at a residence near Red Rock, N.M., on the Navajo Indian Reservation.  Haley was denied permission to enter the residence, an argument ensued and Haley shot at the door in the general direction of where the victim was standing on the other side of the door.  The bullet traveled through the door and struck the victim in the head causing him serious bodily damage.
http://www.justice.gov/usao/nm/pr/2012/2012-08-16_haley_pr.pdf

New Town Man Sentenced to Forty-Five Years (U.S. Attorney for the District of North Dakota)
U.S. Attorney Timothy Q. Purdon announced that on Aug. 13, 2012, Dustin J. Morsette, a/k/a Dusty J. Morsette, 23, of New Town, N.D., was sentenced on charges of sex trafficking, sexual abuse, drug trafficking and witness tampering. Morsette was found guilty of the charges by a federal jury on April 10, 2012. Judge Hovland sentenced Morsette to 45 years in federal prison, to be followed by supervised release for life. Morsette was ordered to pay a $1700 special assessment to the Crime Victim’s fund and must register as a sex offender.  In or about September 2009, Morsette and another person conspired to distribute marijuana in and around the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation. As part of this conspiracy, Morsette began to recruit minors and young adults to be part of a gang he described as the Black Disciples. According to testimony at trial, Morsette used physical force and coercion to cause an adult female he had recruited for the gang to engage in commercial sex acts on the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation and in Williston and Minot. After his arrest in July 2010, Morsette attempted to influence this adult female’s testimony in this case and to prevent communication of information about the sexual abuse and prostitution activity to law enforcement.
http://www.justice.gov/usao/nd/news/news.html#august2012

Winner Man Pleads Guilty to Voluntary Manslaughter (U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota)
U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that Taylor White Buffalo, 19, of Winner, S.D., appeared in federal court on Aug. 14, 2012, and pleaded guilty to Voluntary Manslaughter.  The maximum penalty upon conviction is 15 years in custody, a $250,000 fine, or both. On April 13, 2012, White Buffalo was intoxicated and upset and encountered the victim.  White Buffalo struck, beat, and kicked the victim causing the victim to suffer blunt force trauma to the head and body.  The victim died from his injuries.
http://www.justice.gov/usao/sd/pressreleases/Pierre-2012-08-15-White%20Buffalo.html

Parmelee Woman Pleads Guilty to Involuntary Manslaughter (U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota)
U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that Kenna Young, 20, of Parmelee, S.D., appeared in federal court on Aug. 15, 2012, and pleaded guilty to Involuntary Manslaughter.  The maximum penalty upon conviction is 8 years in custody, a $250,000 fine, or both. The conviction stems from an incident that took place on Feb. 20, 2012, in Todd County, S.D., when Young was driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol.  Young’s vehicle left the roadway and crashed, killing the victim and injuring a second passenger. A sentencing date was set for November 7, 2012. 
http://www.justice.gov/usao/sd/pressreleases/Pierre-2012-08-15-Young.html

Ft. Thompson Man Sentenced on Assault Charge (U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota)
U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that a Ft. Thompson man charged with Assault Resulting in Serious Bodily Injury was sentenced on Aug. 15, 2012. Charles His Law, 29, was sentenced to 96 months in custody, three years of supervised release, $6,145.69 in restitution, and a $100 special assessment to the Victim Assistance Fund.
His Law was indicted for Assault with a Dangerous Weapon, Tampering With a Victim, Retaliating Against a Victim, and Interstate Domestic Violence by a federal grand jury on Dec. 14, 2011. He pleaded guilty to Assault Resulting in Serious Bodily Injury on April 17, 2012.
http://www.justice.gov/usao/sd/pressreleases/Pierre-2012-08-15-His%20Law.html

Dupree Man Pleads Guilty to Sexual Abuse (U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota)
U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that Cody Dean High Elk, 28, of Dupree, S.D., appeared in federal court Aug. 14, 2012, and pleaded guilty to an indictment that charged him with Sexual Abuse of a Person Incapable of Consenting. The maximum penalty upon conviction is 20 years in custody, a $250,000 fine, or both. The conviction arose from a September 2002 incident in Dupree, South Dakota, when the Defendant sexually assaulted the victim at a time when the victim was incapable of appraising the nature of the sexual conduct and incapable of communicating the victim’s unwillingness to engage in the sexual act. A sentencing date was set for Nov. 13, 2012.
http://www.justice.gov/usao/sd/pressreleases/Pierre-2012-08-16-High%20Elk.html

St. Francis Man Sentenced for Domestic Assault by Habitual Offender (U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of South Dakota)
U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that a St. Francis, S.D., man charged with Domestic Assault by Habitual Offender was sentenced on August 14, 2012.  Andrew Spotted Elk, 23, was sentenced to 30 months in custody, two years of supervised release, and a $100 special assessment to the Victim Assistance Fund. Spotted Elk was indicted by a federal grand jury on March 13, 2012, and pleaded guilty to the charge on May 22, 2012.
The conviction stems from an incident in July 2011 when Andrew Spotted Elk committed the crime of domestic assault.  At the time of the domestic assault, Spotted Elk had two prior convictions in tribal court for Domestic Violence-Domestic Abuse against a domestic partner. 
http://www.justice.gov/usao/sd/pressreleases/Pierre-2012-08-15-Spotted%20Elk.html

Little Eagle Man Pleads Guilty to Habitual Domestic Assault (U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of South Dakota)
U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that Arthur Taken Alive, 44, of Little Eagle, S.D., appeared in federal court on Aug. 13, 2012, and pleaded guilty to a Superseding Information that charged him with Domestic Assault by a Habitual Offender. The maximum penalty upon conviction is five years in custody, a $250,000 fine, or both. Restitution may also be ordered. The conviction arose from a May 2011 incident in which Taken Alive assaulted a male victim by striking the victim in the face with his fist. Prior to this incident, Taken Alive had been convicted, at least twice, in tribal court for domestic violence.
http://www.justice.gov/usao/sd/pressreleases/Pierre-2012-08-15-Taken%20Alive.html

Mississippi Man Sentenced For Abusive Sexual Contact (U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Mississippi)
U.S. Attorney Gregory K. Davis announced on Aug. 14, 2012 that John Bradley Charlie, 30, of Choctaw, Miss., was sentenced to serve nine months in prison followed by five years of supervised release for abusive sexual contact of a minor.  The offense occurred within the boundaries of the Tribal Lands of the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians.
http://www.justice.gov/usao/mss/

Window Rock, Ariz., Man Pleads Guilty To Federal (U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico)
U.S. Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales announced that Tyrone Cornelius Joe, 27, an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation who resides in Window Rock, Ariz., pleaded guilty on Aug. 10, 2012 to an involuntary manslaughter charge in federal court.  Joe pleaded guilty to killing Timothy Jackson, a 17-year-old Navajo youth from Fort Defiance, Ariz., on March 20, 2010, while driving under the influence of alcohol on the Navajo Indian Reservation in McKinley County.  In his plea agreement, Joe admitted that, on the night of March 20, 2010, he was driving recklessly and while under the influence of alcohol when he lost control of his vehicle and caused a collision that resulted in Jackson's death.  Joe further admitted that he and the three passengers in his vehicle consumed a thirty-pack of beer, two eight-packs of beer and five 40-ounce bottles of beer prior to the collision.
http://www.justice.gov/usao/nm/pr/2012/2012-08-10_joe_pr.pdf

Cass Lake Man Indicted For Kidnapping Girl (U.S. Attorney for the District of Minnesota)
U.S. Attorney B. Todd Jones announced that a recently unsealed federal indictment charges a 28-year-old Cass Lake man with kidnapping and assaulting a girl while on the Red Lake Indian Reservation.  Robert Elliot Roybal, Jr., was charged with two counts of kidnapping and one count of assault with a dangerous weapon in connection to the crime. The indictment, which was filed on Aug. 7, 2012, was unsealed on Aug. 9, 2012 following Roybal’s initial appearance in federal court. The indictment alleges that on June 26, 2010, Roybal kidnapped a girl who was under the age of 18. In addition, it alleges that Roybal assaulted the girl by kicking her. If convicted, Roybal faces a potential maximum penalty of life in prison on each kidnapping count and 10 years for assault. 
http://www.justice.gov/usao/mn/roybalindicted.html

Nathan Long Sioux, Sr. Pleads Guilty in U.S. Federal Court (U.S. Attorney for the District of Montana)
U.S. Attorney Michael W. Cotter announced on Aug. 8, 2012 that Nathan Long Sioux Sr. pleaded guilty to assault resulting in serious bodily injury.  He faces possible penalties of 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and three years supervised release.  His sentencing was scheduled for Nov. 8, 2012. 
http://www.justice.gov/usao/mt/

Laguna Pueblo Man Sentenced to 10 Years for Federal Second Degree Murder and Assault Convictions (U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico)
U.S. Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales announced on Aug. 7, 2012 that Vincent Paul Francis charged with second degree and assault convictions and later sentenced to 10 years in prison and three years of supervised release after completing his prison sentence.  Francis was also ordered to pay $82,647 in restitution to cover the victims’ funeral and medical costs.
http://www.justice.gov/usao/nm/pr/2012/2012-08-07_francis_pr.pdf

Kirtland, N.M., Man Pleads Guilty to Federal Child Sex Abuse Charge (U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico)
U.S. Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales announced on Aug. 6, 2012 that Wilson Harry pleaded guilty to an indictment charging him with abusive sexual contact under a plea agreement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office.   Under the terms of his plea agreement, Harry will be sentenced to 63 months in prison, to be followed by a term of supervised release to be determined by the court and will be required to register as a sex offender. 
http://www.justice.gov/usao/nm/pr/index.html

Tyler Dale Medicine Horse, Jr. Pleads Guilty in U.S. Federal Court (U.S. Attorney for the District of Montana)
U.S. Attorney Michael W. Cotter announced on Aug. 6, 2012 that Tyler Dale Medicine Horse Jr. pleaded guilty to sexual abuse of a minor.  Medicine Horse faces possible penalties of 15 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and lifetime supervision.  His sentencing date was set for Oct. 25, 2012. 
http://www.justice.gov/usao/mt/pressreleases/20120806154246.html

Mescalero Man Sentenced to 51 Months for Federal Assault Conviction (U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico)
U.S. Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales announced on Aug. 6, 2012 that Gene Collins Ahidley pleaded guilty to a two-count indictment charging him with assault resulting in serious bodily injury and assault with a deadly weapon. He was sentenced to 51 months in prison and a two year term of supervised release after he completes his prison sentence.
http://www.justice.gov/usao/nm/pr/index.html

FIREARMS VIOLATIONS

Rosebud Man Sentenced for Felon in Possession of a Firearm and Possession of Unregistered Firearm (U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota)
U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that a Rosebud, South Dakota, man charged with Felon in Possession of a Firearm and Possession of Unregistered Firearm was sentenced on August 15, 2012, by United States District Judge Roberto A. Lange.  Zane M. Swimmer, age 53, was sentenced to 84 months in custody, three years of supervised release, and a $200 special assessment to the Victim Assistance Fund.

http://www.justice.gov/usao/sd/pressreleases/Pierre-2012-08-15-Swimmer.html

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