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  • Thanks! Update

    Rynal n Williams, member has been dismissed without rejudice for the moment, they probably are turning states evidence or something:

    NTV - KHGI/KWNB/WSWS-CA - Where your news comes first. - Grand Island, Kearney, Hastings, Lincoln | Judge dismisses charges against one Kaweah Nation defendant

    Judge dismisses charges against one Kaweah Nation defendant

    Associated Press - February 26, 2008 6:34 PM ET

    WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - A federal judge is dropping charges against one member of the Wichita-based Kaweah Indian Nation accused of defrauding immigrants.

    Raynal Williams was 1 of 11 people charged in an alleged scheme to sell tribal memberships to immigrants by falsely claiming it would make them American citizens.

    A 17-count federal indictment also said the tribe claimed the memberships would allow immigrants to obtain other documents, including Social Security cards.

    The Bureau of Indian Affairs previously ruled that the tribe's leader, Malcolm Webber -- also known as Grand Chief Thunderbird IV -- is not an American Indian.

    The bureau also does NOT recognize the Kaweah Nation as an American Indian tribe.

    Trial for the remaining 10 defendants is set for August 5th.

    Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


    • Originally posted by RainbowSpiriDancer View Post
      Hey all,

      I'm not posting this comment towards anyone, I'm just curious and I'm a knowledge seeker. I live in North Carolina too and I've gone all over the state to attend Pow-wows because I love to attend. I'm ndn and I've come in contact with hundreds of people that all of a sudden want to start tribes, become chiefs, and get tribal cards. Well I can understand starting organizations to learn about and promote ndn culture and heritage. However, I don't agree with these people in my neck of the woods and I do mean my community (so I'm not trying to offend anyone) because I truly believe in my heart that they are only doing it to get 501 (c) (3) to apply for grants. In fact, I've heard them say this with my own ears and I told them that it's wrong. And I truly believe in my heart that their intentions are wrong! And they've got the nerve to appoint and I do mean appoint Shamans and Medicine Men and Women. And I hate it because it's wrong and scary.

      In the meantime, My immediate family is considered Melungeon and from oral legend passed down to me, I know that I have a Tuscarora heritage, Mattamuskeet, Cherokee, Oglala Lakota, as well as Ancestors from several of the Virginia Nations, so it's impossible for me to narrow it down to one Indian Nation and trust me, I don't try. I'm proud of my ndn heritage and my people and I'm very spiritual but I'm not enrolled into any tribe and I don't have a tribal card and I don't want one. I'm happy being me and learning as much as I can about my ndn heritage. And the new ndn tribes that I know about in my neck of the woods, the members only argue and fight and want the members to constantly pay money. They don't deserve a cent, in my opinion! Yes, they want me to join but I rather spend my time writing books!

      As for me, I'm not going for that crap! Meanwhile, I'm not knocking anyone that wants to be a member of whatever tribe they are a member of because I don't know a thing in the world about them or what they do. I only know about the folks in my neck of the woods. I often wonder what will happen if and when they have to pay that grant money back? These groups usually dissolve anyway! And I know about the things that I've said because you all know how word gets around in Indian Country.
      Josiah, you are very wise and I hope to meet you someday.
      I agree with the words you have spoken. I too feel the same way. I to feel I dont need a card to tell me who what and where My family came from for I know in my heart That I am Native American. In my opinion If you was born and raised here on turtle island no matter what tribal Affilation you are you are Native american. That may not make any sense to some folks but it does to me. Anyhoo I am just posting my thoughts.
      We are all from the same tree, Just different branches..All we really have to do once in awhile is climb down out of that tree and take a good look at the whole tree.


      • Originally posted by RainbowSpiriDancer View Post
        Welfare cheese! Did someone say, "welfare cheese!" To me that is the best tasting cheese in the world. Wish I could get my hands on some right now! Do they still make it, anybody know? I'd sure love to have some. Honestly! I'd trade my toyota for a box of that cheese. Honestly! When I was a little girl, I'd eat a belly full and then go outside to my grandparent's handpump and drink so much water until I could hear it splashing around in my belly!

        I can remeber my mom use to get goverment cheese and booy it was good better then kraft cheese. For some reason the goverment stopped handy it out at the food pantry's here in my neck of the woods. Dont know what but boy to I miss that cheese.
        We are all from the same tree, Just different branches..All we really have to do once in awhile is climb down out of that tree and take a good look at the whole tree.


        • and the race to see just how high bullchit really can be stacked is on........

          Defense says tribal chief believed he was helping immigrants

          Defense says tribal chief believed he was helping immigrants
          (Published May 14, 2008)
          WICHITA, Kan. — The self-proclaimed chief of an unrecognized American Indian tribe will argue at his trial that he had a "good faith belief" that selling tribal memberships was a legitimate way to help illegal immigrants take a step toward citizenship, court documents show.

          Motions filed Wednesday in the case provide a glimpse into the defense strategy of Malcolm Webber, also known as Grand Chief Thunderbird IV. The defense is asking for an order to force prosecutors to turn over allegedly exculpatory evidence. It also wants to sever the chief's trial from the trial of his co-defendants.

          Prosecutors contend the Kaweah Indian Nation defrauded legal and illegal immigrants across the nation by claiming tribal membership conferred U.S. citizenship and would allow immigrants to obtain other documents and benefits, including Social Security cards. The government pointed out that citizenship cannot be obtained in that manner.

          On Wednesday, defense attorney Kurt Kerns filed a motion for a court order requiring prosecutors to turn over exculpatory evidence. Kerns, who represents the chief, argued that prosecutors have told him they have an audiotape of minutes of a meeting in which Webber said that allowing individuals into his tribe is not designed to be a moneymaking scheme, but is instead designed to help people.

          Kerns told the court that Webber believed his conduct was lawful and that he thought he was providing a legitimate method by which illegal immigrants could become registered in the United States and enjoy a first step toward citizenship status.

          The money that came in from the sale of the memberships - about $300,000 that the government is seeking in forfeiture - was not used to line Webber's own pockets, but was instead placed in a separate account eventually meant to buy land, Kerns told The Associated Press.

          "He thought if they would buy land for a reservation there would be greater likelihood of federal recognition," Kerns said.

          The Bureau of Indian Affairs denied Webber's request for federal recognition of his Kaweah Indian Nation in 1984. The agency said Webber was not an Indian and that his organization had no historic characteristics of an Indian tribe.

          The U.S. attorney's office said it would have no comment on the filings.

          Federal prosecutors last year charged 11 people, including the chief and the tribal entity, in a 17-count indictment. Charges have since been dismissed against one defendant, and another defendant has pleaded guilty to falsely claiming U.S. citizenship.

          The indictment charges Webber, 69, of Bel Aire with four counts of harboring illegal immigrants, one count of possession of false documents with intent to defraud the United States, three counts of conspiracy with intent to defraud the United States, one count of mail fraud and one count of producing false identification documents.

          Webber and the remaining nine defendants are scheduled for trial Aug. 5.

          The defense contends that Webber advised individuals that membership in the tribe would be a first step to getting American citizenship after the tribe became federally recognized. But he contended others working under him sold memberships at inflated prices, forcing Webber at one point to fire one of them for it.

          "The bulk of the 'fraud' was committed by underlings in their efforts to line their own pockets," the defense contends in its motion.

          Kerns said in a motion that other defendants are arguing that they were duped by Webber, and that their trial should be separated because of mutually antagonistic and inconsistent defenses.

          "The interests of justice would be best served by allowing defendant Webber to have his own trial versus a trial where he will not only have to defend himself against the federal government, but also against every other defense lawyer who is offering Malcolm up as the sacrificial lamb," Kerns said in court documents.

          Remaining defendants named in the indictment are Debra J. Flynn of Wichita; Chuck Flynn of Wichita; Jorge B. Villareal, a citizen of Mexico who lived in Bell Flower, Calif.; Eduviges Del Carmen-Zamora of Wichita and a native of El Salvador; Angel O. Zamora, a citizen of Guatemala; Britton A. Bergman of Wichita; Hector Nolasco Pena, a citizen of Honduras who lives in Oklahoma City; and Victor W. Orvellana, a citizen of Mexico who lives in Long Beach, Calif.

          Jamie Cervantes, a citizen of Mexico, has pleaded guilty to submitting a Social Security application in which he falsely claimed to be a U.S. citizen. His sentencing is June 30.

          The older I get the less of a deterrent life without parole gets


          • I didn't bother reading this whole thing (to many posts), but these people are a joke and I hope they get what's coming to them!

            With that being said:

            Originally posted by RainbowSpiriDancer View Post
            Wow! I have a direct bloodline to the Pierce, Brooks, and Bray lines. But as I've always known, my people are mixed with several Indian Nations from around North Carolina and Virginia etc. My maternal great grandmother was born in 1893 and I'm told that she called herself Coroatan and her husband was born in 1888 and he called himself Tuscarora. That's what I'm told. Thanks again for the information on this thread.
            Brooks and Pierce are definate Robco sure that Bray wasn't Brayboy/Braveboy (name got changed in census' so its spelled both ways now)?

            In regards to your great is a quote from a newspaper article from that time to shed some light on the Croatan and Tuscarora tradition that was handed down to you:

            Fayetteville Observer 1885

            "They say that their traditions say that the people we call the Croatan Indians (though they do not recognize that name as that of a tribe, but only a village, and that they were Tuscaroras).............They gradually drifted away from their original seats, and at length settled in
            Robeson, about the center of the county."

            In all actuality Croatan was an impossed name (a geographic name like the name Lumbee of today), your great-grandmother was born after that date and it explains why she would accept the Croatan that was the legal description of the people at that time......It appears that your great-grandfather knew better though (as there are many other recorded references to Tuscarora that outdate the 1885 Croatan imposition by the state).

            If your great-grandparents were from those Brooks, Pierce, and Braveboy families in Robeson.....then both of them were Tuscarora.

            Just thought you might find this your oral tradition (and the oral tradition of many other people) coincides perfectly with what history has recorded.


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