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Tex Hall maintains he was duped by man facing murder charges

The story was featured on the top of The New York Times homepage earlier today.

Tex Hall, the former chairman of the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation of North Dakota, says he was manipulated by a business associate who is facing a slew of murder and other charges.

Hall, who lost his bid for re-election this year, said he was ill when James Henrikson brought a contract to the hospital to do work with the former chairman's company, Maheshu Energy. He ended up breaking ties with Henrikson but not until Henrikson's firm won a $570,000 payment for a project on the reservation.

"I got ripped off and taken advantage of,” Hall told The New York Times. “The people didn’t really know that when the news first broke.'’

Henrikson, 35, eagerly boasted of his ties to Hall, who served three, non-consecutive terms as chairman of the energy-rich tribe. But his motives weren't entirely pure -- an alleged gang member claims Henrikson asked him to murder Hall.

The plot was apparently never carried out. Henrikson, however, is facing charges for hiring someone to murder Douglas Carlile, a Washington man who was doing business on the reservation.

Henrikson also faces murder charges in connection with the presumed death of Kristopher “K.C.” Clarke, a 29-year-old man who was seen on the reservation in February 2012. Clarke had worked for Henrikson's company before he went missing.

Get the Story:
In North Dakota, a Tale of Oil, Corruption and Death (The New York Times 12/29)

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