Lawyers try to collect $3.2M from Miccosukee defendants

Two members of the Miccosukee Tribe owe $3.2 million to a Florida man for the death of his wife but they say they can't pay the judgement.

Tammy Gwen Billie and her father, Jimmie Bert, admitted fault for a 1998 accident that claimed the life of Liliana Bermudez. But attorneys for Bermudez's husband say they haven't been able to get any of the money from the pair.

“Somehow, the defendants had millions to pay their lawyers, but not a penny to pay the survivors of the woman killed in the crash,” attorney Ramon M. Rodriguez told The Miami Herald.

Rodriguez has provided 61 checks that the tribe issued to the law firm that represents Billie and Bert. According to the Herald, the checks totaled nearly $2 million.

The Lewis Tein law firm, however, claims the tribe issued the checks because Billie and Bert do not maintain checking accounts. Billie spent much of the last decade in prison so she hasn't earned much income and she said she has only received a small per capita payment from the tribe.

Bert, on the other hand, is employed by the tribe with a $118,391 salary. He has received per capita payments although the amount is in dispute.

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2 Miccosukees won’t pay $3.2M judgment, but their lawyers earned millions (The Miami Herald 10/28)