Griles says contempt finding 'unnecessary'
Facebook Twitter Email

Deputy Interior Secretary J. Steven Griles said yesterday he hoped his recent court testimony will help convince a federal judge not to sanction his boss for her handling of the assets of 300,000 American Indians.

"It is my sincere hope and desire that . . . he will not find that unnecessary cause of action that he thinks he needs to take," Griles told the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.

Griles said that during his testimony, which took place Wednesday and Thursday last week, he spoke "at length" with U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth. Among the issues discussed was Secretary Gale Norton's proposed reorganization.

Griles acknowledged there is enormous tribal opposition to the creation of the Bureau of Indian Trust Assets Management (BITAM). But he also said there was progress being made to come to a solution.

Hoping to counter the argument, attorneys representing the Indian beneficiaries hope Norton today will shed more light on the consultation process. The plaintiffs also want to call National Congress of American Indians President Tex Hall to offer rebuttal.

Norton is set to take the stand today at 10 a.m.

Today on Indianz.Com:
Griles gets grilled by Congress (2/13)
Interior changes mind on payments (2/13)

Relevant Links:
Indian Trust, Department of Interior -
Indian Trust: Cobell v. Norton -
Trust Reform, NCAI -

Related Stories:
Norton ordered to testify (2/8)
Trust system takes center stage in contempt (2/1)
Federal judge resuming Norton contempt trial (1/31)
Norton effort 'too little, too late' for judge (1/16)
Interior official denies trust fund 'conspiracy' (1/15)
Witness testifies against software corruption (1/15)
Dom Nessi expected as Norton witness (1/14)
Norton launches contempt defense (1/11)
Cobell plaintiffs rest case (1/10)
End in sight for Norton contempt trial (1/10)
Top trust official lacks 'confidence' in reform (1/9)
Babbitt, others dropped as witnesses (1/9)
Trial resumes with trust testimony (1/7)
Contempt trial resumes in federal court (1/4)
Cobell: Justice for Indian Country (12/24)
Contempt trial breaking for Christmas (12/21)
IIM checks being delayed at Interior (12/21)
Interior can't find proof of corruption (12/21)
Tribal leaders blast Norton proposal (12/21)
Reports crucial to Norton contempt (12/21)
TAAMS failure traced to first manager (12/20)
TAAMS: The Titanic Failure (12/20)
Judge questions role in trust fund 'circus' (12/20)
Norton drops objections to court monitor (12/20)
TAAMS: The Titanic Failure (12/20)
Judge questions role in trust fund 'circus' (12/20)
TAAMS failure traced to promoted manager (12/20)
Ruling on court monitor put off (12/20)
Norton ordered to submit trust fund report (12/18)
Judge rebuffs Norton challenge (12/17)
Week two of trial continues today (12/17)
History of neglect drives trust case (12/17)
Judge eager for Norton testimony (12/13)
Editorial: Bad faith, wasted dollars (12/13)
Confusion, conflict detailed at Interior (12/12)
Exclusive: Trust reform assessment (12/12)
Lamberth pokes fun at government (12/12)
EDS trust reform report online (12/12)
Coverage of Contempt Trial, Day 2 (12/12)
Contempt trial continues (12/11)
Contested reports focus of contempt trial (12/11)
The Trial: Witnesses to Contempt (12/11)
Coverage of Contempt Trial, Day 1 (12/11)
Norton contempt trial opens (12/10)
Norton attacks court monitor (12/10)
Norton set for contempt trial (12/10)