Tuesday, December 4, 2018

The Pala Band Is In A Legal Fight With Big Pharma Over Opioid Crisis

Thanks to Original Pechanga's Blog for bringing this to my attention.

So far it has been hard to find anything online.   Pala supposedly issued a press release but I have not been able to find it yet.

Law360 is listing the case:  Pala Band of Mission Indians v. Purdue Pharma L.P. et al

I did manage to find one news article:

abc10 News San Diego - Pala Band of Mission Indians files lawsuit against opioid manufacturers, distributors

You can read the full article at the link above.

Here is an excerpt:
#
In a press release, Pala Tribal Chairman Robert Smith said, “The opioid epidemic has had devastating impacts on our tribe. Big Pharma’s aggressive promotion of OxyContin and other prescription opiates have caused increasing incidences of addiction, disability and family dysfunction.”
#

Reality has completely gone Orwellian.

33 comments:

Anonymous said...

Whether it is true or not it is sad that Natives have such addictive personalities, but the real reason he is suing is because he wants more money and now there is competition for his Meth sales.

Anonymous said...

A lot of the abusers are his family and he knows where to get it cause he has picked up for his daughter before when she was sick after her car crash from driving while high. He covers only for his own and then sues on behalf of PBMI so he can use tribal money and lawyers and then will pocket some of the settlement if there is one. Check the mobile home behind his house in Pala, his daughters are coming in and out of there always late at night and nobody lives there. So why are cars coming in and out always between midnight and 3am? They go there to get high or store their stuff. Just a thought.

Anonymous said...

First Robert says he is going to lower per capita and the people still re-elect him. Now there is no Christmas bonus but he got his early. Remember he strong armed the casino for $100,000. Now he uses the tribes name and resources to sue several corporations and waived the tribe's sovereign immunity. Don't be surprised if the big boys don't counter sue and take everything the tribe owns to include our per capita. When did the general council approve this law suit anyway and who are these attorneys representing the tribe? None of it matters because he will just retroactive approval anyway. All of you who voted for him go f yourself. there is no reason to lower per cap but you are idiots and that will never change so no expectations here. Next he will raise your house payments and car payments leaving even less for you to buy your monthly requirement of opioids. Pala will look strange with all those people coming off their drugs because they can no longer afford them.

Anonymous said...

What the hell people is wrong with you? He's spending more millions of OUR Tribes money on a vendetta. Dammit, address the goddamn dealers here in Pala or are you afraid of the people you've allowed here? You tear down YOUR OWN PEOPLE'S homes using the excuse they're cooking meth. I can think of a few homes that were not only raided several times for COOKING METH, selling and distributing drugs but yet their homes are still standing. Double standards or what? Now he's spending more money when we are supposedly broke? Come on FBI enough is enough, arrest them already.

Anonymous said...

Maybe I should sue PBMI for my gambling addiction

Anonymous said...

So Pig pharma is using big pharma. Is there really any difference.

Anonymous said...

So the funny part is everyone knows Rob is involved with the drug situation and the gang activity here in Pala. He's covered for them, his own daughters, family. Removed evidence of murder because his daughter was indirectly involved, the list goes on and on. But who re-elected him? Dumbass people, he can't hurt you unless you let him. This whole thing is just a coverup of all his crimes, and now we are so close to losing our casino because of him. Re-elect him again dumbasses.

Anonymous said...

You people just condoned another 2 years of criminal activity for
Robert Smith to move forward with his stealing from you.
What the hell is wrong with you .
If you think that things will change you are right.
They will change for you, they will get worse day by day until there is
nothing left but a large building that cost millions of dollars to build and is now boarded up with used plywood and a non operating
Casino that was supposed to be the future of PBMI.
But because you believed in Robert Smith and Theresa Nieto's lies
and corruption you are now eligible for TANIF or county welfare
like Smith said one time.
And you can't blame anyone but your self .

Anonymous said...

We all knew percap was dropping and now we know how much. No Xmas bonus and a large drop in percap, yup Pala’s economic future is looking bright. I have a job to cover the difference cause I new this was our future and didn’t want my family to suffer because of Smith and nieto a corruption so I won’t be hurting as much as others. I just want to say for those of you that voted for rob and Theresa you deserve this slap in the face. They admit we are broke and they exhausted the accounts and yet 2 mi this later you re-elect them and then they don’t give out a Xmas bonuses and drop percap. Wow you all deserve it for either being too dumb or too scared to step up and do something. For the members that did try to run against them or vote for new leadership I feel for you and hope this only strengthens your fighting spirit to fix Pala and get rid of these crooks who will lower percap again later this year. They want percap to be just a small amount like it was when we first opened the casino in 2001 and said we can work if we want money and that the casino is to support the tribe not the people. But it’s ok to support you private jet rob? They consider themselves the tribe so the money can support them but not the people. Wow I’m sad for our tribe that there are that many idiots that keep on supporting these two.

Anonymous said...

Thank God I worked my whole life and built up my Social Security. Unfortunately many of the young people has no clue what it is to work, living from paycheck to paycheck. Personally I don't think the FBI is going to do squat, they're waiting for us to fail as a tribe. Robert has so many people on his payroll, (Tribal members, politicians, etc.) He will just continue getting elected. This Tribe is so corrupt it smells like shit. He has no respect or consideration for Tradition only what he can line his pockets with. Maybe he'll buy everybody a gift with the $100,000 he stole from the casino.

Anonymous said...

Yes he will buy everyone a gift and deduct it from your
per cap the following month plus interest.

Anonymous said...

I really hate to say this but my fellow Tribal Members are getting more stupid day by day and it is really hurting the members of PBMI who want things to change for the better.
They stand behind a very corrupt leadership and it doesn't seem to matter to them what the EC does or wants.
It is very hard to see this happen to a once happy Tribe
that was considered an A plus tribe by many in Indian Country.
Now we are the laughing stock and least respected Tribe by those that used to respect Pala and its members.
All the hard work that old leaders and Elders did is washed away by one little fat bastard, aka Robert Smith
who thinks his shit doesn't stink.
And for his other half Theresa Nieto who i consider an outsider is just as guilty as Smith is for not being honest with the people, she is a natural born liar and has the heart of the devil inside her.
She lies to most of the members about every thing concerning the financial status of the Tribe.
And the worse part about all of this is that there are many who think that she is so God like and honest.
Hell she wouldn't know honest if it punched her in the face.
What they are doing to the members of PBMI is totally
wrong and totally against the Customs and Traditions of the PBMI and no one seems to care one way or another.
Why are you people just sitting back and letting them control every aspect of your lives.
You can legally stop this per capita cut by making a motion not to cut the members per cap at the next meeting.
If the motion is voted on and passed then they can not cut your per capita and thats all it would take to show them that you are not going to stand for anymore bullshit from them an then motion for an Audit and watch them change their tune on every thing.
An Audit will show exactly what is happening with your money and how it is being spent by the EC.
The EC needs to take cuts on there end before the people do.
Their budget is so far over what is should be for the size of the Reservation.
Its even over the top for most city budgets like Fallbrook and Bonsall or even Murrieta.
And no one seems to care.
The only reason they want to cut your per capita is they want the money to spend on Pala Interactive which should be supporting it self by now according to most gaming sites.
Vote it down and take control of the EC, after all aren't the3y supposed to work for you.
If you Pala Members let this happen then it will continue happen every time the need money for whatever reason.
Stop being so baby like and stand up to them or you will be sorry in the end when you have no more income from the Casino.

Anonymous said...

I am serious about this per cap cut and all it will take to stop it is a motion to not cut the members per cap and its a done deal.
They CAN NOT CUT IT IF THE MOTION PASSES.
So who will have the balls to make that motion?
Make them prove that a per cap cut is needed and why.
Stop believing every thing they tell you.
The only way to get to the bottom of this issue is to call for an Audit.
That is something that Smith and Nieto don't want to happen because it will prove their guilt of corruption
against the Members and more.

Anonymous said...

When the EC disenrolled the Brittains, they told everyone that it would just make their per-cap go up, so many members said nothing, they wanted more. They were making $8000.00 after taxes, how much of a raise have the members gotten? Robert told the Brittains that they would not get disenrolled, Robert and Teresa told the members they would get more, Teresa told the disenrolled that the kids would get their money, Robert and Teresa tell the members that there is no money, yet how many homes does Robert own? HOw many new cars do members of his family drive? How often does he use the Jet? How often does he pay for Lawyers? WHat if he loses the lawsuit? Does Pala have to pay the Lawyers? SO HOW MUCH BETTER OFF ARE YOU PALA PEOPLE SINCE THE DISENROLLMENTS? WHO DO YOU THINK IS RIGHT? THE TIDES ARE BEGINNING TO TURN. Be ready people, save your money. Remember the disenrolled lost all of their income in one day, what will you do if that happens to you? Think about it, now is the time for the members to do something before it is too late or it might be GOOD-BYE PALA CASINO, GOOD-BYE PER-CAP.

Anonymous said...

@3:07am
If you want you percap so bad then why dont you make a motion? The tribe can’t vote for percap anyway it’s about the compact and how much of the tribes monthly income can be given out as percap. The pie is divided by percentages and the less money rob and nieto say we have the lower the percap goes cause the total amount is less but the percentage never changes. Voting will not stop it but you can vote for an audit to find out if the money they say we have or don’t have is accurate.
So I say again if you are so righteous in. It want I gotta your percap to go down then why don’t you make a motion for a group of tribal members preferably the 10 that lost their rights to higher an outside audit company.

Anonymous said...

Why don't you learn to post Mr. Chairman Smith.
12:42 PM sounds like and post like Rob without the help of his main mouth peace Nieto.

Anonymous said...

It is right that you cannot vote to get a certain amount of money for per cap. The moneys are divided by percentages. You can vote to change the amount of percentage that goes to per cap. right now it is 60% so vote to change it to 70% and force Robert to adjust the remaining percentage accordingly. If nothing is done and Robert lowers per cap then he must lower the salaries including his own to reflect the new level of casino income.

Since there was no Christmas bonus from the casino this year vote for a bonus from the avocado, race track, housing interest money, loan interest money, store proceeds, restaurant/s proceeds, atm proceeds and rv park moneys. None of these moneys are part of the Tribal Revenue Allocation Plan and should not be comingled with the TRAP. Vote for it and they EC will have no choice but to distribute those moneys. Remember all of the costs for operating these businesses already come out of the administration portion of the TRAP. All these moneys have been easy money for Robert and Theresa to steal over the years because everyone only looks at the casino revenue. WAKE UP PALA.

Anonymous said...

Lets all make this Holiday Season a great one by giving Robert Smith and Theresa Nieto what they deserve.
Make any effort to bring them down by ant means possible
and watch them fall to their lowest point ever.
Any thing that you have that can help this issue should be used against them.
Aren't you tired of their bullshit lies and corruption
all of these years.
If your answer is yes then do something about it and stop just sitting back and taking their shit.
Speak up for a change and don't let them talk you down ant longer or you will soon lose what little you have left and be forced to live the rest of you live in the world of Smith and Nieto.
Before to long you will be down so low that you will be forced to go to the Casino not to gamble but to steal toilet paper because you won't be able to afford to buy it and this is exactly wher they want you to be.
Seriously people this is where we are all headed if they continue to run your life the way they do.
It's your Casino and it's your money that they are spending and controlling without your consent.
Also everyone should have caught this little clue at the last meeting when Nieto made the statement that at the January meeting they would let the people know how much the cut would be.
How did she even know that they would be siting on the EC come January.
Why, because they new that there would be no change in the Election results because the Election was rigged from the start and that's why she felt comfortable saying that she would let the people know at the January
meeting.
Other wise how would she know that she or Smith would be on the EC come January.
WAKE THE HELL UP PALA WHAT'S THE MATTER ARE YOU AFRAID
OF LOSING YOUR INCOME.
YOU ARE ALL READY LOSING IT AND A LOT MORE LOSSES TO COME BECAUSE YOU ARE SCARED TO STAND UP FOR THE RIGHT THING THAT WAS HANDED TO YOU BY YOUR ANCESTORS AND TAKEN FROM YOU BECAUSE OF YOU ARE AFRAID OF ROBERT SMITH WHO IS NOTHING BUT A BIG PILE OF PIG SHIT WITHOUT THE TITLE OF CHAIRMAN ADDED TO HIS NAME.

Anonymous said...

If per capita is lowered then the administrative budget, the general welfare fund, the economic development fund must all be lowered too. That is how percentageshe work.

A certain amount of revenue is divided into percentages and distributed. If the revenue goes down as the EC claims and forces per capita down, then all the other distributions must be reduced accordingly.

So keep an eye on the administrative budget. If per capita goes down, admin must go down or the Band is un violation of the revenue allocation plan with the NIGC and the BIA.

Anonymous said...

From what i understand the NIGC is watching Pala to see if they in fact lower the members per capita and will act accordingly on the Bands action.
So someone must have complained to them about the coming cut.

Anonymous said...

Robert and Nieto feel confident after being re-elected
so they will attempt to do whatever they can to cover up their bullshit once again and use their lies to cover the per capita cut.
Remember at the last meeting Nieto said the the cut was due to the contract with NIGC and the cut was do to meeting the tribes contractual obligations with the nigc.
She is a liar so be ready for more lies at the next meeting.

Anonymous said...

I'm not a Tribal member, my family lives in both Riverside and San Diego county. This is my first time ever writing on this blog. Several of my family members, including myself work or has worked in various casinos. We've always used to enjoy gambling at your casino but after reading this blog and how horrible your Tribal government treats you we stopped gambling there. Another reason is because the machines are tightened up. We know this can be done. Not familiar with your politics, can't they be impeached?

Anonymous said...

@ 9:15 AM
I can't really blame you for not supporting our Casino
there are a lot of good people that live here on the Reservation and have tried a number of actions to get rid of the trash that runs the Tribal Government.
However every time that that happens someone gets kicked out of the Tribe or even worse.
So many of the members are afraid to do anything.
We can't even call for an Audit of the Tribes finances
because the Tribal Government shuts it down or lies to everyone.
Its not going to get any better until the EC is replaced or some of them die of and go to hell.
The worse part is the US Government/ Congress will not step in and take control of the corruption that is spreading like Cancer.
So here we sit like little kids that are under their power struggle, like little puppets.

Anonymous said...

If only this were true. Many people have lost hope.

Sacrenento Watchdog said...

@ 7:52 AM
I did verify that the NIGC is aware that Pala is gearing up for a cut in membership per capita.
However they were not notified by the Band of this action
and that's one of the reasons that they are keeping an eye on the Pala EC to see what the EC is doing and how much of a cut that they are thinking of making.
They also said that other financial area's are supposed to cut first and foremost if they intend on cutting the members per capita.
This came directly from a source within the NIGC.
They learned of this action through a rumor in their
office and did not come directly from the Pala EC.

Anonymous said...

If you went to meetings and payed attention you would know how much percap is going down they have said it. It’s enough to make a difference in many peoples lives, well the ones that rely solely on percap. Let’s just say it’s a third of the take home. This will not of course affect the EC as their pay for being on the EC will not change. Nieto and rob make over $100k being on council plus bonuses so the percap doesn’t matter much to them. Also you really think the NIGC is going to do anything come on have they yet. The EC can change percap anyway they want as long as it’s according to the distribution plan and matches how much “they say” is coming from the casino. Unfortunately some people really believe people are just hating on the honorable Robert smith and believe what he says and don’t realize he is the farthest thing from honorable.

Reinstatement_Restitution said...

The Pala EC has had free reign to do as they please. They claim that the GC has given them the authority to make financial decisions without GC approval. The GC has not recalled or removed any EC members for violations of tribal law. It is illegal for the EC to use the Gaming Ordinance as authority to make financial decisions because any Ordinance the Band adopts must conform with the Constitution. Somehow the members vote to approve illegal acts after the fact, or Robert produces some phony resolution and the federal government says it's an internal tribal matter and can't interfere.

Look forward to another similar sequence with per capita reduction, and a Resolution that will be approved by the GC to divert funds equivalent to the reduction to the account of Robert's choice.

Anonymous said...

@ 10:03 AM
The latest is that Roberts pay for being the Chairman is
in excess of $200,000 per year plus whatever he can and does steal from the Band.
Theresa Nieto earns $140,000 per year for being the Treasurer, the Vice Chairman earns approx. $85,000 per year, and the council members earn $4500 per month.
All of this is plus their per capita,insurance, and
their 401K, and taxes.
These are fairly close figures according to someone
who knows for sure.
This also does not include the extra money they make to attend meetings or the use of the Tribal jets.
Talk about ripping off the Tribe.

Anonymous said...

I heard rob pays himself $250k and nieto $150k a year for being on the EC. I’m not sure about the others or how accurate this is but it’s basically the same you stated so it’s most likely accurate. Even though we didn’t receive a Xmas bonus you beat believe rob and theresa did. I would love to see someone bring up the EC yearly payments to be discussed by the general council and amended if necessary at our monthly meeting. Let’s see how quick rob shuts that down by stating it’s not on the agenda. To bad Pala doesn’t have enough warriors to keep submitting requests to add such topics on the agenda and bring them up at the meetings after being denied over and over again. King did and Willy did and that’s why Robert Hated them so much. Nobody rarely backed them up that’s why they weren’t successful when trying to get answers out of smith or nieto at the meetings. If enough people spoke up at the meeting and didn’t back down they would have to discuss or allow it to be added to next months agenda. Robert knows everyone is whipped into submission that’s why he does what he does because the only 2 people that repeatedly opposed him are dead and the other was banned from meetings along with 9 others from 9 families that tried to stand up for the people. Even robs own uncle Larry an elder was attacked at a meeting when he wouldn’t back down and demanded answers from rob.
Things at Pala have been heading one direction since 2012 when they disenrolled to save money which didn’t help since they still had to take out a loan to pay out a Christmas bonus and then every year after until this year.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone read the Pig Pharma v Big Pharma lawsuit. It says: The Tribe has 1143 enrolled members who are Cupeño and Luiseño Indian. This would mean that Pig Pharma is still including the Brittens in his count of members. Either that or he and nat shit are enrolling their turds.

Anonymous said...

Wouldn't have to take out loans if he didn't make such bad investments, which of course is to cover up his crimes. It amazes me how greedy the EC is, so many people will have to go back to work just to cover bills, many who are paying child support, bankruptcies, loans are really going to be hurt. Does he care? Hell no, just spend more millions on a case that can't be won. Shut fatass address the problems here. You know damn well who the dealers, cookers are but yet do nothing. Why? Because you're involved in one way or another?

Reinstatement_Restitution said...

The lawyers in this lawsuit most probably are working on contingency fees. They only get paid if they win the lawsuit. There are no damages specified, so my guess is that they are hoping to find other parties to join as plaintiffs and leverage into class action litigation.

Hobbs, Straus, Dean & Walker, LLP is the firm representing PBMI in the Purdue Pharma complaint. Has this firm been approved by the GC and the Secretary as required by the PBMI Constitution? Any PBMI member that wants to, and the more the merrier, should file an appeal with the Pacific Regional Director, Amy Dutschke, that the attorneys in this action have not been approved in violation of the PBMI Constitution. I know. There probably aren't any members with the backbone to do this.

Just like there aren't any members with the courage to stand up at a meeting, cite Roberts Rules of Order, and attempt to discuss new business, like the failure to obtain approval for attorneys before filing a lawsuit on behalf of the Band.

Nor are they any members willing to file a complaint with the BIA that the Pala EC is in violation of the Revenue Allocation Plan because they have not reported a reduction in Casino revenue yet are reducing per capita. Or maybe they and just neglected to inform the GC? That would actually be funny.

Members must feel threatened by Robert's safe full of blackmail evidence. He has compromised many members. The security footage has captured all kinds of bad behavior, but it goes deeper than that. Those he can't threaten personally have family that he threatens to harm. Then there are those who get extra money and don't want to stop the flow of extra funds. Or those who don't have the blood degree and would be disenrolled if Robert wasn't head of the enrollment committee.

I guess these people outnumber the good people, and this numbers game has to get you thinking. The bad guys now outnumber the good guys, and that is why Robert Smith continues his corrupt agenda with the cooperation of the Band. It will end up being a case of people getting what they deserve at some point soon enough.

I hate to say it, but if the good people are not willing to stand up for what is right they will have to face their own music when the time comes. How sad that innocent people will get painted the same black color as the Chairman, but if they won't stand against the crime then they will be held culpable just like the Chairman.

Anonymous said...

The ones that are a threat to Robert Smith are either dead or wrongly put in jail/prison for something that should have never taken place or blamed to rid them of harming smith or nieto.
However what they don't realize is that these people that they thought were safely locked away and douldn't hurt them have many friends and relatives that can.
I can't wait to see the day that one of these people finally gets revenge on smith and nieto.
I feel that that day is coming sooner than later.
And this per capita cut may just break the ice.
Got to get to walmart and buy a new shirt and tie for that special day.
Maybe a black shirt and a white tie would look okay.
black for the color of their souls and the white tie for the angels that saved everyone by taking them out.