Purported American Indian Land Conveyances

A court case from the 10th Circuit addresses fraud and fraudulent “purported” conveyances of American Indian allotment lands in which the court held:

The Begay and Mrs. Cecil Navajo allotments were still held in trust by the United States, pursuant to the provisions of the General Allotment Act, 25 U.S.C. § 331, et seq. (1976). We agree.

See https://casetext.com/case/begay-v-albers.

Then in U.S. v. Mottaz, 476 U.S. 834 (1986), the Court found that 25 U.S.C. Section 345 applies more when an original allotment is the subject matter and when the claim is brought forth when there is lawful entitlement by virtue of any Act of Congress. “The structure of § 345 strongly suggests, however, that § 345 itself waives the Government’s immunity only with respect to the former class of cases: those seeking an original allotment.” In fact, Section 345 has been used in many cases to bring quiet title actions against private parties other than the federal government. From the case text, there are two ways types of jurisdiction available to a federal District Court under Section 345 and the most important is when ii) proceedings are “in relation to” the claimed right of a person of Indian descent to land that was once allotted.

Interesting to note that 28 U.S.C. Section 2415, as laid out under sub part (c) does not bar commencement of actions when the it involves establishment of title to, or right of possession of, real or personal property. In the fraudulent land sales during my Grandmother Susie’s probate (within five months of each other by Theresa Robinson and Josephine Brown Graham) and against my father’s rights as the only surviving heir and a child at the time, Congressional land restrictions were not removed by the Secretary of Interior and neither could the District Court of Oklahoma take its proper jurisdiction. 

Indian land theft was prevalent and pervasive as my research uncovered in “Deceit in Oklahoma: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/deceit-oklahoma-helen-nowlin. Don’t leave things to chance. Ensure your Last Will and Testament is properly cared for by trustworthy people to ensure your wishes are honored!

Get a copy of my American Indian Probate Reform Act Legal Guide!


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