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Federal Recognition
Forgery alleged in Amah Mutsun recognition bid

A dispute within the Amah Mutsun Indian Tribe of California has prompted calls for an investigation into documents that were allegedly forged.

Irenne Zwierlein claims to be chairwoman of the Amah Mutsun of Mission San Juan Bautista. She has signed a development deal for a 6,500-acre ranch near Hollister.

But Zwierlein's claims are fraudulent, rivals from the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band say. They accuse her of forging at least two documents that were sent to the Bureau of Indian Affairs as part of the Amah Mutsun's recognition petition. A forensic expert hired by the Tribal Band concluded the documents were faked [PDF: Results of Examination].

Rep. Mike Honda (D-California) has introduced a bill to speed up a decision on the Amah Mutsun of Mission San Juan Bautista. His chief of staff said the bill would be amended to address the concerns.

Get the Story:
Forgery Claim Blurs Tribe's Fate (The Hollister Free-Lance 8/29)

Amah Mutsun Recognition Bill:

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