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Leader of Lower Brule Sioux Tribe blasts report as 'baseless'

A sign at the entrance of the Lower Brule Sioux Reservation in South Dakota. Photo from Rolf Blauert / Wikipedia

The longtime leader of the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe of South Dakota criticized a report that alleged corruption and mismanagement on the reservation.

Chairman Michael Jandreau, who has run the tribe for 36 years, said the allegations in the Human Rights Watch were "baseless." He said the tribe was exploring its "legal options" in response to accusations that the tribe mishandled about $25 million in federal funds between 2007 and 2013.

"It's shocking that any credible organization would put its name on it," Jandreau said in a press release. "It's full of factual errors, misrepresentations, and outright falsehoods.

Critics of Jandreau, however, hope the report will spur change on the reservation. Sonny Ziegler, a council member, said he's never been allowed to see a tribe's financial statement.

Jandreau and his supporters are trying to remove Ziegler and two other council members from their positions. A hearing was held in tribal court yesterday as the report was being released.

Get the Story:
Tribe leader denies tax dollar misuse claims (The Sioux Falls Argus Leader 1/13)
Lower Brule Criticized For Secrecy And Mismanagement (KELO 1/12)

Get the Report:
Secret and Unaccountable: The Tribal Council at Brule and Its Impact on Human Rights (January 2015)

Related Stories:
Group accuses Lower Brule Sioux Tribe of widespread corruption (1/12)

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