Nooksack Tribe ignores court orders as disenrollment dispute stalls

The Nooksack Tribe of Washington is trying to remove 306 people from the rolls. Photo from The Nooksack 306 / Facebook

The Nooksack Tribe of Washington is refusing to abide by court orders in a closely-watched disenrollment case.

The tribe fired the judge who was handling the case, which stems from the removal of a group known as The Nooksack 306. The tribe also barred the group's attorneys from practicing law on the reservation.

Despite the setbacks, The Nooksack 306 has tried to move forward with the lawsuit. The Nooksack Tribal Court of Appeals has since held the tribal court clerk in contempt for refusing to accept filings by the group and is threatening to issue fines against the tribe's chief of police.

But Chairman Bob Kelly said none of that matters. He said the court of appeals lacks authority to tell the tribe what to do.

"There is only one branch of government and control of the legislative, executive, and judicial functions of the Tribal government fall under the control of the Nooksack Tribal Council," Kelly told The Bellingham Herald.

Turtle Talk has posted documents from the case, In re Gabriel Galanda v Nooksack Tribal Court Order on Motion to Enforce Contempt Order and Belmont v Kelly.

Get the Story:
Nooksack tribal police chief could face fines for not jailing court clerk (The Bellingham Herald 7/30)
Judges threaten to jail Nooksack court clerk in disenrollment cases (The Bellingham Herald 7/6)

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