Seminole Tribe keeps business deals in the family
Want to do business with the Seminole Tribe of Florida? It helps if you are a tribal member or, better yet, related to one of the tribal council members.

Tribal officials regularly vote on deals involving relatives, according to The South Florida Sun-Sentinel. Tribal leaders said that's just the way the Seminoles do business.

"We know everybody; everybody knows us. If we don't treat them fair, they're going to tell us," council member Max Osceola Jr. told the paper, which has been investigating the tribe's finances as part of an ongoing series.

One recent deal involved council member David Cypress. The tribe gave him 534 acres and an undisclosed amount of cash for his private boxing gym, which is assessed at $900,420 and was purchased for $350,000 in 1997.

"I guess we have our own affirmative action program," Osceola testified as part of a federal embezzlement trial, part of which looked at the gym.

Get the Story:
Tribal Council votes help some leaders and their families (The South Florida Sun-Sentinel 11/28)
Tree trimmer with links to tribal leader runs multimillion-dollar businesses (The South Florida Sun-Sentinel 11/28)

Relevant Links:
Seminole Tribe -

Related Stories:
NIGC investigates Seminole use of gaming funds (11/27)