Gabe Galanda: Paskenta Civil RICO Suit "A Proxy for Disenrollment"

Law360 quotes Gabe Galanda regarding a civil RICO lawsuit filed in California federal district court by a Paksenta Tribal Council faction against a family of ousted Tribal leaders.

Gabriel S. Galanda of Galanda Broadman PLLC says that the recent complaint essentially brings a battle over tribal membership, which affects who profits from tribal revenues, under the cover of a RICO suit.p30572908-182017L

‘‘That lawsuit is designed to cause the disenrollment of the defendants,” Galanda said. “In my estimation, it is not designed to expose mob-style racketeering or claw back so-called ill-gotten gains; it’s a proxy for disenrollment.”

The court may be leery of the suit, as federal courts have shown an unwillingness to get involved in tribal disenrollment conflicts, Galanda said.

The 171-page lawsuit (hardly the short and plain statement of grounds mandated by Rule 8(a)(2)) is riddled with allegations of "internal" or "intramural" tribal matters, in which courts---especially U.S. District Courts---are loath to involve themselves.  Dismissal motion practice is sure to come.

More broadly, a Tribal faction's initiation of dubious civil RICO litigation against their adversaries, is yet another new lawyer-designed play for Abramoff's Playbook.

Gabriel “Gabe” Galanda is the Managing Partner at Galanda Broadman. He belongs to the Round Valley Indian Tribes. Gabe can be reached at 206.300.7801 or