FROM THE ARCHIVE

Former BIA head McCaleb happy court is off his back

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MONDAY, JULY 21, 2003

Former assistant secretary Neal McCaleb is happy he won't be held responsible for the failed Indian trust fund.

Reacting to Friday's decision by the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals to lift contempt charges against him and Secretary of Interior Gale Norton, he said he feels vindicated. "I built a lifetime on honesty and integrity, and that was a blemish on that," he told The Daily Oklahoman.

"The (finding) that we had perpetrated a fraud on the court was the thing that pained me the most individually," McCaleb told Gannett News. "Those are words that I never associated with the way I do business."

In the days following the September 17, 2002, contempt decision, McCaleb was openly distraught. He told tribal leaders at a Washington, D.C.-area meeting that he wasn't "accustomed to reading my name in the paper as being in contempt of court -- a fraud upon the court. . . I didn't lie to anybody. I'm not going to have that happen again if I can possibly prevent it."

McCaleb resigned last December, citing pressure from the litigation.

Get the Story:
Appeals court clears McCaleb of contempt (The Daily Oklahoman 7/19)
Username: indianz@indianz.com, Password: indianz
Norton contempt citation revoked (Gannett News Service 7/19)
Contempt Ruling Against Norton Reversed (The Washington Post 7/19)
Order Against Interior Dept. Is Overturned (The New York Times 7/19)
Interior Secretary Cleared of Contempt (The Los Angeles Times 7/19)

Today on Indianz.Com:
Contempt charges against Interior vacated (7/21)

Relevant Links:
Indian Trust: Cobell v. Norton - http://www.indiantrust.com
Cobell v. Norton, Department of Justice - http://www.usdoj.gov/civil/cases/cobell/index.htm
Indian Trust, Department of Interior - http://www.doi.gov/indiantrust

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