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Ysleta del Sur Pueblo Code of Laws

Last revised: 2000

Ysleta Del Sur Pueblo
Tribal Council
119 S. Old Pueblo Rd. • (915) 859-7913 • El Paso, Texas 79907


YSLETA DEL SUR PUEBLO
TRIBAL RESOLUTION TC- 92-97

Pertaining to Article 2 of the tribe's Code of Laws Entitled "Judicial Code"


WHEREAS,

 

the Tribal Council (the "Council") of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo (the "Pueblo"), is the duly constituted traditional governing body of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo exercising all inherent governmental power, fiscal authority, and tribal sovereignty as recognized in sections 101 104 of the Act of August 18, 1987 (the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo Restoration Act), 101 Stat. 666, Public Law No. 100-89; and,
WHEREAS,
the Pueblo has operated from time immemorial as a Native American political sovereign without organic or written constitution, charter, or by-laws; and,
WHEREAS,
the Pueblo governs itself by oral tradition; and,
WHEREAS,
the civil and criminal law authority of the Pueblo is vested in the. Council consisting of the Cacique, the Governor, the Lieutenant Governor, the War Captain, the Alquacil, and four (4) Council members; and,
WHEREAS,
the Council has determined that it is in the best interest of the Tribe to amend its Judicial Code to conform it with those provisions of the tribe's newly enacted Peace Code; and,
WHEREAS,
the Council has authorized the Governor of the Pueblo to act for the Tribe in the signing of this resolution; and,
WHEREAS,
the Council intends that this Resolution shall constitute evidence of the authorization of the Council to pass such Rules and Regulations.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by the Council of the Pueblo as follows:

1.

The preambles hereto shall be incorporated herein and made part of the Resolution.

2.

That Tribal Ordinance No. 009-97, which adopts Article 2 of the tribe's Code of Laws entitled "Judicial Code," a true and correct copy of which is attached hereto as Exhibit "A" and, by reference, is incorporated herein for all purposes as if set forth at length, is hereby enacted to be effective immediately.
ADOPTED this the 10th day of December, 1997.
CERTIFICATION
I, the undersigned, as Governor of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo hereby certify that the Ysleta del Sur Tribal Council, at a duly called Tribal Council Meeting, convened and held on the 10th day of December, 1997, at the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo approved the foregoing Resolution, a quorum being present, and that 7 voted for, 0 opposed, 0 abstained.
Ysleta del Sur Pueblo
____________/s/__________
VINCE MUNOZ
Tribal Governor
ATTEST:
____________/s/__________
Sylvia Garcia/Lory Granillo
Tribal Secretary

TRIBAL ORDINANCE NO. 010-97

Adopting Revised Article 2 of the tribe's Code of Laws Entitled "Judicial Code"


Pursuant to the authority vested in the Tribal Council (the "Council") as the duly constituted traditional governing body of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo (the "Pueblo"), a federally recognized Indian Tribe exercising all inherent governmental powers, fiscal authority and tribal sovereignty as recognized in the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo Restoration Act (Public Law 100-89 as codified in 25 U.S.C. § 1300g, hereinafter the "Restoration Act"), and its lawful authority to provide for health, safety, morals, welfare, tribal economic development and self-sufficiency of the Pueblo, the Council of the Pueblo hereby enacts this Ordinance for the purpose of conforming its Judicial Code with the newly enacted Peace Code. Therefore, be it resolved and ordained by the Council of the Pueblo:

That the attached Article entitled "Judicial Code," which by reference, is incorporated herein as if set forth at length, is hereby adopted as revised Article 2 of the tribe's Code of Laws.


YSLETA DEL SUR PUEBLO

  By:____________/s/_________
Vince Munoz

Title: ___Tribal Governor___
 

ATTEST:

By:____________/s/________
...............Lory Granillo

Title: Tribal Council Secretary


ARTICLE 2 - JUDICIAL CODE


Part 1. General Provisions

Section 1. Purpose.

1.01. The purpose of this Judicial Code is to ensure peace and order on the Reservation and lands of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo, to promote the welfare of the Tribe and its members, to safeguard individual rights and community standards, and to secure rights and powers which are inherent in the tribe's sovereign status.

1.02. This Judicial Code shall be liberally interpreted to accomplish the following objectives: revealing the truth, treating all parties fairly and without prejudice, protecting individual rights guaranteed by the Indian Civil Rights Act and by the traditions, customs and laws of the Tribe, and resolving disputes efficiently.


Section 2. Definitions and Construction.

2.01. In this Judicial Code, except where otherwise specifically provided or unless the context otherwise requires, the following terms have the following meanings:

(A) "Appeals Court" means the Tribal Council.

(B) "Civil" means all non-criminal issues, matters, subjects, cases and controversies between or among any persons.

(C) "Court" means one of the courts of the Tribe to which the reference is intended to apply as determined by the particular section of this Judicial Code in which the reference is made, and all and each of the judges of that court acting collectively and individually in that office or capacity.

(D) "Courts of the Tribe" means the Tribal Court and the Appeals Court.

(E) "Judge" means a judge of the court which is the subject of the particular section of this Judicial Code in which the reference is made.

(F) "Judicial Code" means this Judicial Code of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo together with all the amendments, additions or modifications which may be enacted from time-to-time by the Tribal Council.

(G) "Party" means any person who is a participant, or involved in or the subject of, whether active or inactive, voluntary or involuntary, including one made a party by the action of another person, any case, trial, hearing, controversy, matter, relationship or proceeding which is encompassed within any procedure under this Judicial Code.

(H) "Person" means any individual, firm, co-partnership, joint venture, association, social club, fraternal organization, corporation, estate, trust, business trust, receiver, trustee, syndicate, a state of the United States, any county, city, municipality, district, or other political subdivision of a state, or any other group or combination acting as a unit but does not include the Tribe, any of its enterprises or subdivisions or any of its officers, agents or employees while acting in their official capacity.

(I) "Property" means the realty and personality, or whatever nature, including fixtures, money, claims, and intangible rights and interests in property.

(J) "Reservation" means the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo Reservation as established, existing and geographically defined under the Laws of the United States, encompassing all territory within its exterior boundaries as now or hereafter prescribed or ascertained, including fee patented lands, roads, waters, bridges, and lands and rights of way owned, used and claimed by any person. "Reservation" includes all fee lands held by the Tribe.

(K) "Tribal Council" means the Tribal Council of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo.

(L) Tribal Court" means the trial court created, existing and operating under the provisions of this Judicial Code, and the judges of the court, collectively and individually, serving and acting in that office and capacity.

(M) "Tribe" means the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo and "tribal" means belonging or pertaining to the Tribe.

(N) "Ysleta del Sur Pueblo" means a federally recognized Indian Tribe, exercising all inherent governmental powers, fiscal authority and tribal sovereignty as recognized in the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo Restoration Act (Public Law 100-89, 101 Stat. 666, as codified at 25 U.S.C. § 1300g).

2.02. In construing the provisions of this Judicial Code, unless the context otherwise requires, the following shall apply:

(A) This Judicial Code shall be liberally construed to effect its purpose and to promote justice.

(B) Words in the present tense include the future and the past tense.

(C) Words in the singular number include the plural, and words in the plural number include the singular.

(D) Words of the masculine gender or neuter include masculine and feminine genders and the neuter.

(E) All actions involving civil infractions and the conduct of all procedures pertaining to their trial or other disposition shall be in the name and for the benefit of the Tribe.

(F) Each appointment to be made by the Tribal Council under the provisions of this Judicial Code shall be by resolution requiring an affirmative, majority vote of a quorum at a special or regular meeting of the Tribal Council.



Sections 3-9. {Reserved for Future Use}


Part 2. Tribal Court System

Section 10. Establishment of Tribal Court System.

10.01. The Tribal court system shall be comprised of a Tribal Court and an Appeals Court which, collectively, shall be known as the courts of the Tribe.

10.02. There is hereby created a Tribal Court consisting of a Chief Judge. Tribal Council may appoint Associate Judges. The Tribal Court shall have exclusive, original jurisdiction for the trial or other original determination of all civil cases, matters and proceedings, submitted to the courts of the Tribes, as well as any other original jurisdiction granted to it by Tribal Council.

(A) Each Judge of the Tribal Court shall hold office at the will of Tribal Council.

(B) All judges of the Tribal Court shall be appointed by the Tribal Council, with the Chief Judge specifically appointed by it to that office.

(C) A Tribal member, a member of another federally recognized tribe, or other person twenty-five (25) years of age or older shall be eligible to serve as a judge of the Tribal Court, provided that such person should possess substantial legal education or experience. The following persons may not serve as a judge of Tribal Court:

(1) members of the Tribal Council, persons otherwise employed by the courts of the Tribe, law enforcement officials of the Tribe or persons who have other similar conflicting interests; and,

(2) those who have been convicted of a felony, or of a misdemeanor, or other criminal offense involving dishonesty or moral turpitude within the last five years, in any Federal, Tribal or State Court.

(D) Each person prior to assuming the office of judge of the Tribal Court shall take the following oath before the Tribal Council:

"I swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States, and the sovereignty of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo and its traditions, customs, and laws, and that I will faithfully and diligently perform the duties of Judge of the Tribal Court of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo, to the utmost of my ability, with impartiality and without improper favor, to the end that justice may be fully served."

(E) The Chief Judge shall be responsible for assignment of cases and other matters for determination or disposition by the respective judges of the Tribal Court.

(F) The Chief Judge and Associate Judges of the Tribal Court may establish and promulgate rules of procedure for the conduct of its proceedings which are~not inconsistent with this Judicial Code or other governing and applicable law.

(G) The Chief Judge and any Associate Judges shall be paid a salary to be determined by the Tribal Council. The salary of any Chief Judge or Associate Judge shall not be reduced during his term of office.

10.03. Subject to any limitations, restrictions or exceptions imposed by or under the authority of the Constitution or laws of the United States, or by the traditions, customs, or laws of the Tribe, or by express provisions elsewhere in this Judicial Code, the courts of the Tribe shall exercise personal, subject matter, and concurrent jurisdiction as set forth below.

(A) The courts of the Tribe shall exercise jurisdiction over the following persons:

(1) Any person residing, located or present within the Reservation for any civil cause of action.

(2) Any person who transacts, conducts or performs any business or activity within the Reservation, either in person or by an agent or representative, for any civil cause of action arising from such business or activity.

(3) Any person who owns, uses or possesses any property within the Reservation, for any civil cause of action arising from such ownership, use or possession.

(4) Any person who commits a tortious act or engages in tortious conduct within the reservation, either in person or by an agent or representative, for any civil cause or action arising from such act or conduct.

(5) Any person who commits a civil infraction of any laws of the Tribe, by his own conduct or of another for which he is legally accountable, if the conduct occurs either wholly or partly within the Reservation.

(B) The courts of the Tribe shall exercise jurisdiction over the following subject
matters:

(1) All civil causes of action and all controversies between any persons;

(2) All civil causes of action all controversies between the Tribe and any person;

(3) All cases involving a civil infraction of the tribe's laws; and,

(4) All actions based on the alleged violation of the Indian Civil Rights Act (Title II, § 202 P.L. 90-284, 82 Stat. 77 and codified at 25 U.S.C. § 1302), and to grant appropriate relief for injustice or deprivation resulting directly and exclusively from such violation but only upon an express and effective waiver of the tribe's sovereign immunity from unconsented suit.

(C) In the absence of an applicable ordinance or code provision or rule, the courts of the Tribe shall have power to take any measures reasonably necessary to carry out and protect its jurisdiction.

(D) The jurisdiction granted by this Judicial Code over any person, cause or subject shall be concurrent with any valid jurisdiction over the same of the courts of the United States, any state or any political subdivision thereof; provided, however, this Judicial Code does not recognize, grant, or cede jurisdiction to any political or governmental entity which jurisdiction does not otherwise exist in law.

10.04. The courts of the Tribes shall have such powers as it deems necessary to resolve those controversies over which it has jurisdiction in accordance to the purposes, and pursuant to the provisions, of this Judicial Code.

10.05. The Tribe shall not be liable to any person for injuries suffered to his person or property, or the person or property of another, or for wrongful death, unless the injured person, or someone authorized to act on his behalf, or someone acting on behalf of the deceased, shall within thirty days from the date the death or damage occurred or the injury was received, gives sworn, written notice to the Governor of the Tribe of the following facts:

(A) The date, time, and place of the occurrence of the damage, injury, or death and where the injured or deceased person was at the time the occurrence;

(B) The nature and extent of the damage or injury together with a specific and detailed statement of how and under what circumstances the damage, injury, or death occurred; and,

(C) The names of all the persons who according to the knowledge or information of the claimant witnessed any part of the happening of the damage, injury, or death and the name of the doctors, if any, to whose care the injured or deceased person was committed.

10.06. In all civil cases the Tribal Court shall apply the traditions, customs, and laws of the Tribe. Where any doubt arises as to the traditions and customs of the Tribe, the Court may request the advice of tribal members familiar with the traditions and customs. In the event that a case or controversy arises which is not covered by the traditions, customs, and laws of the Tribe, the court may be guided by appropriate Federal law and regulations, or by the laws of the State of Texas, or that agreed to by the parties.

10.07. Plaintiff must file his Complaint within one year after the injury, breach of agreement, or other event which forms the basis of Plaintiff's cause of action. The year within which the Complaint must be filed shall be counted from the date when Plaintiff knew or should have reasonably known of the injury, breach, or underlying event.

10.08. The Tribal Council shall appropriate and authorize the expenditure of tribal funds for the operation of the courts of the Tribe. The amounts to be so appropriated shall be as determined by the Tribal Council, consistent with the needs of the courts for proper administration of justice within the Reservation and for the Tribe. To assist the Tribal Council in making such appropriation, the Chief Judges of the Tribal Court and the Appeals Court shall submit proposed budgets and reports of expenses and expenditures to the Tribal Council, at such intervals and in such form as may be prescribed by the Tribal Council. Such budgets and reports shall include the operation of the office of the Judicial Clerk.


Section 11. Rules Governing Administration.

11.01. The office of Judicial Clerk is hereby created.

(A) Tribal Council shall appoint a person to the office to serve the courts of the Tribe. The Tribal Council shall prescribe the salary of the Judicial Clerk, which shall be paid by the Tribe. Any person serving as Judicial Clerk may be discharged from that position only by Tribal Council.

(B) The Judicial Clerk, prior to assuming the duties of office, shall take the following oath before the Tribal Council:

"I swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States, and the sovereignty of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo and its traditions, customs, and laws, and that I will diligently and faithfully perform the duties of Judicial Clerk of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo. I will not let my personal views and relationships affect my performance as Judicial Clerk. l will not attempt to influence the course of any judicial proceeding or alter its outcome. I will not divulge confidential matters obtained in the scope and course of the performance of my duties."

(C) The Judicial Clerk shall be responsible to the courts of the Tribe for the administrative functioning of those courts, and for such other administrative and ministerial duties as may be prescribed by this Judicial Code or assigned to him by the Chief Judge of either the Tribal Court or the Appeals Court. The duties of the Judicial Clerk shall include but shall not be limited to, the following:

(1) Maintaining records of all court proceedings, to include identification of the title and nature of the case, the names of the parties, the substance of the complaint, the names and addresses of all witnesses, the dates of hearing and trial, names and addresses of all parties and witnesses appearing at any hearing or trial, any court ruling, findings, order and judgment, and other facts or circumstances designated by the judges of the courts and deemed of importance by the Judicial Clerk;

(2) Maintaining all pleadings, documents, and other materials filed with the courts;

(3) Maintaining all evidentiary materials, transcripts, and records of testimony filed with the courts;

(4) Collecting and accounting for fines and other moneys and properties taken into custody of the courts;

(5) Preparing and serving notices, summons, subpoenas, warrants, rulings, findings, opinions and orders as prescribed by this Judicial Code and as may be designated by the judges of the courts;

(6) Administering oaths and witnessing the execution of documents;

(7) Maintaining a supply of blank forms to be prescribed by the courts for use by all persons having business before the courts;

(8) Keeping a calendar of court dates and deadlines and assisting with the scheduling of court proceedings;

(9) Providing copies of documents in court files to parties and judges upon request, and upon receipt of a charge therefor to be prescribed by the Judicial Clerk to cover the costs of such service; provided; however, there shall be no charge for such service to the judges of the courts and, provided further, no copies of documents or material shall be provided from files which are to be kept confidential or unavailable for public inspection pursuant to any provisions of this Code or other ordinance of the Tribe, or if prohibited by any court order;

(10) Providing security for all files, documents and materials filed with or in the custody of the courts, and insuring that they are not removed from the office of the Judicial Clerk and the courts except upon the specific instructions of a judge of the courts;

(11) Participating in appropriate training programs; and,

(12) Maintaining a library of laws, regulations, orders, opinions, and decisions of the United States and its administrative agencies and courts, the Tribal Council and the courts of the Tribes, and of the various states, insofar as they may be pertinent to the administration of justice for the Tribe and within the Reservation. The acquisition of such materials shall be subject to appropriation of funds therefore by the Tribal Council. Materials in the library shall be available for use in the office of the Judicial Clerk during normal working hours by any person subject to the jurisdiction of the courts of the Tribe and authorized representatives.

11.02. Court records are subject to the following rules:

(A) Records of the courts of the Tribe shall be kept in the office of the Judicial Clerk on the Reservation, and those records shall not be removed except with the permission of the appropriate Chief Judge or by order of the Tribal Council.

(B) All testimony and arguments given in open court shall be electronically recorded by the Judicial Clerk and shall be a part of the record for the case and be kept with the other records of the case. A transcript of the recording(s) shall be made under the direction of the Judicial Clerk upon the request of a judge or of a party when the case is appealed. Unless excused by the Appeals Court, a party requesting a transcript shall bear the expense of its preparation.

(C) The Judicial Clerk shall keep the following records:

(1) A calendar of scheduled court dates and deadlines;

(2) A separate file with index of each case or matter brought in Tribal Court in which every pleading, transcript, and piece of evidence pertaining to the case is 'filed;

(3) A docket book containing the style of each case or matter brought in Tribal Court, and the date and short description of every document filed in the case in chronological order;

(4) An index containing the names of all parties appearing in each case and matter brought in Tribal Court with the file number of the case or matter;

(5) A ledger showing all funds and property received and disbursed in the course of each case or matter brought in Tribal Court;

(6) A list of representatives permitted to practice before the courts of the Tribe; and,

(7) Such other records as ordered by the appropriate Chief Judge or as deemed necessary by the Judicial Clerk.

(D) All records of the courts of the Tribe are confidential, except as otherwise provided in this Judicial Code or as directed by the courts of the Tribe.

11.03. All money or other property received by the Tribal Court or the Judicial Clerk for payment of costs or for payment of fines shall be the property of the Tribe and shall be the subject of such accounting procedure and disposition as may be designated by the Tribal Council.

(A) The disposition of all other money, goods or property of any person taken into the custody of the Tribal Court, Judicial Clerk or Tribal Police Department pursuant to this Judicial Code or any other laws of the Tribe shall be determined by the Tribal Court, with hearing and notice to parties who may have any interest therein if appropriate.

(1) Upon satisfactory proof of ownership and entitlement thereto, the court shall order such property to be delivered to the owner or persons entitled thereto except in the following circumstances:

(a) If such property is required as evidence in any case pending before the Tribal Court or the Appeals Court, such property shall be retained by the Judicial Clerk or Tribal Court, or by the Tribal Police Department subject to the direction of the court, until final judgment and determination of the case, including appeal.

(b) If possession of such property is unlawful, it shall be declared by the court to be tribal property and transferred to the Tribal Council for disposition.

(2) Any property the possession of which, or the manner of its possession, constitutes a civil infraction under any provision of this Judicial Code or any other laws of the Tribe shall become the property of the Tribe. Upon a final determination of such case the property shall be transferred to the Tribal Council for disposition.

(B) Any property to which the owner or other person is lawfully entitled to possess, which is in the possession of the Tribal Police Department, the Judicial Clerk, or the Tribal Court but which is not claimed by the owner or such person within six (6) months after it has been determined that he is entitled to it, and he has been given notice thereof, shall become the property of the Tribe. Such property shall be transferred to the Tribal Council for disposition.

(C) The Judicial Clerk shall keep records of all property taken into the custody of the Tribal Court and the Judicial Clerk, including receipts for transfer or relinquishment of it.


Section 12. Rules Governing Judges.

12.01. Except in open court, a judge should not discuss a case pending before the court with a party in that case, a party's representative, or any person who has an interest in the case. A judge should avoid informal contacts with members of the Tribal Police Department in which judicial business in discussed. A judge should not seek the advice or opinions from other persons, including judges and lawyers, regarding the merits of a particular case. A judge may, however, discuss general principles affecting cases and hypothetical examples with other judges and lawyers.

12.02. A judge shall respect and comply with Tribal traditions, customs and laws, and Federal and applicable state law, and shall always conduct himself in such a way as to promote respect for the office. A judge shall not let his social relationships, religious and political views, and criticism or praise influence his decisions in the court. A judge shall be conscientious in the performance of all official duties. A judge shall maintain order in the courtroom.

12.03. No judge shall officiate in any proceeding in which he has any personal interest, or in which any party, witness or counsel is related to him by blood or marriage within the third degree, or in which any party, witness or counsel stands in the relationship to the judge of ward, attorney, client, employer, employee, landlord, tenant, business associate, creditor or debtor. For these purposes, service as a judge for the Tribe shall not constitute disqualification by virtue of such employment by the Tribe.


Section 13. Rules Governing Representatives.


13.01. Any person or entity who is a party in any matter before any of the courts of the Tribe may be represented by:

(A) himself or in the case of an entity, a duly appointed agent;

(B) any member of the Tribe, except the Judicial Clerk, an assistant Judicial Clerk, a judge of any of the courts of the Tribe, a member of the Tribal Council, or any Tribal law enforcement official;

(C) an advocate or professional attorney who is not a member of the Tribe but who is employed by the Tribe to represent persons or entities before the courts of the Tribe; and,

(D) a professional attorney who is not a member of the Tribe but who is licensed hereunder to practice law before the courts of the Tribe. Any party desiring the services of a professional attorney shall arrange for and bear the expenses of such representation.

13.02. The Tribe may be represented by a person, advocate or professional attorney employed, retained, under contract or otherwise duly authorized to represent the Tribe. No such person, advocate or professional attorney shall be appointed to represent any non-tribal person or entity in any matter in any of the courts of the Tribe.

13.03. No person or entity shall be entitled to representation provided at the expense of the Tribe in any matter before any of the courts of the Tribe.

13.04. Any action involving a civil infraction will be presented before the Tribal Court by a member of the Tribal Police Department, who shall be designated by the Chief of that Department, unless the Tribal Council appoints a prosecutor for that trial, or for trials during a prescribed period of time to be designated by the Tribal Council and which includes that trial if such a prosecutor is appointed, he shall conduct the prosecution of the trail to the exclusion of all other persons except for their appearance as witnesses. Such a prosecutor must be appointed by the Tribal Council for any trial in which any member of the Police Department is a defendant.

13.05. The Tribal Council shall appoint a person to represent the Tribe in appeals of action involving civil infractions. This appointment may be either for individual cases or matters, or it may be a continuing appointment for such appeals.

13.06. Professional attorneys who are not members of the Tribe may appear on behalf of any party in any trial or proceeding before the courts of the Tribe provided that they have a license in force to practice law before the Courts of the Tribe, issued by the Judicial Clerk and approved by the Chief Judges of the Tribal Court and the Appeals Court. Such a license shall be issued and approved upon the applicant complying with all of the following requirements:

(A) Filing with the Judicial Clerk an affidavit the applicant is licensed to practice law before a United States District Court and the Supreme Court of a state of the United States, and is in good standing in both jurisdiction;

(B) Filing with the Judicial Clerk an affidavit that the applicant has studied and is familiar with this Judicial Code, all other laws of the Tribe, Title 25 of the United States Code, and Title 25 of Code of Federal Regulations;

(C) Paying an annual license fee as prescribed by the Tribal Court; and,

(D) Taking the following oath before the Judicial Clerk:

"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States, the sovereignty Ysleta del Sur Pueblo and its traditions, customs, and laws. "I will maintain the respect due to the Courts of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo and their judicial officers. I will not counsel or maintain any suit or proceeding which shall appear to me to be unjust, nor any defense except such as I believe to be honestly valid or debatable under the law. I will employ for the purpose of maintaining the causes confided to me such means only as are consistent with truth and honor, and I will never seek to mislead any judge by any artifice, or by false statement or misrepresentation of fact or law. I will employ in the conduct of my duties the highest degree of ethics and moral standards with which my profession is charged, and I will be guided at all times by the quest for truth and justice. In the conduct of my duties as an attorney I will not impugn the morals, character, honesty, good faith, or competence of any person, nor advance any fact prejudicial to the honor of reputation of any person unless required by the justice of the cause with which I am charged."

13.07. A license issued pursuant hereto may be revoked or suspended by the Tribal Court. Such action may be taken on its own motion by that court or upon sworn complaint by any member of the Tribe filed with it. Revocation or suspension shall be ordered only after written notice to the licensee of the motion or complaint and after a hearing before that court. Following such a hearing that court may revoke or suspend the license upon finding that the licensee has been disbarred or suspended from the practice of law by any court of the United States or any state, or has filed a false affidavit with the Judicial Clerk to obtain his license, or has violated his oath made before the Judicial Clerk, or has been guilty of misconduct or unethical conduct in the performance of his duties as an attorney, or has been guilty of contemptuous conduct toward one of the courts of the Tribe.


Section 14. Rules Governing Evidence.

14.01. Tribal Rules of Evidence ("TRE") shall apply to all actions before the Tribal Court. As long as a party does not unknowingly waive a right or protection guaranteed by Tribal law, the parties and the courts of the Tribe may agree to depart from Tribal Rules of Evidence in order to save time and expense while achieving the purposes of this Judicial Code and the Tribal laws.

14.02. Tribal Rules of Evidence shall be comprised of, and be numbered the same as, the Federal Rules of Evidence, as presently existing and subsequently amended, that are not inconsistent with another provision of this Judicial Code or the laws of the Tribe, nor are otherwise inapplicable because they refer to any specific federal procedure or laws having no counterpart in Tribal law or before Tribal Court. The Tribal Rules of Evidence shall be interpreted and applied in a manner reflecting the lack of jury trials and criminal prosecution in Tribal Court. To the extent that the Federal Rules of Evidence reference or incorporate federal or state law, such referenced or incorporated law is included in the Tribal Rules of Evidence only to the extent that such referenced or incorporated law pertains to evidentiary matters. The adoption of the Federal Rules of Evidence as the Tribal Rules of Evidence does not constitute the adoption of any substantive laws. Unless the context requires otherwise, or because a party in a particular case is the United States, the words "Attorney General", United States", "State", "Court", "Judicial District", and any similar designation, in the applicable Tribal Rules of Evidence or the statutes to which they refer, are deemed to refer to their counterparts under Tribal law.


Section 15. Rules Governing Civil Procedure.

15.01. Tribal Rules of Civil Procedure ("TRCP") shall apply to all actions before the Tribal Court. As long as a party does not unknowingly waive a right or protection guaranteed by Tribal law, the parties and the courts of the Tribe may agree to depart from the Tribal Rules of Civil Procedure in order to save time and expense while achieving the purposes of this Judicial Code and the Tribal laws.

15.02. Tribal Rules of Civil Procedure shall be comprised of, and be numbered the same as, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and the Local Court Rules of the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas, as presently existing and subsequently amended, that are not inconsistent with another provision of this Judicial Code or laws of the Tribe, nor are otherwise inapplicable because they refer to any specific federal procedure or laws having no counterpart in Tribal law or before Tribal Court. The Tribal Rules of Civil Procedure shall be interpreted and applied in a manner reflecting the lack of jury trials and criminal prosecution in Tribal Court. To the extent that the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and the Local Court Rules of the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas reference or incorporate federal or state law, such referenced or incorporated law is included in the Tribal Rules of Civil Procedure only to the extent that such referenced or incorporated law pertains to procedural matters. The adoption of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and the Local Court Rules of the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas as the Tribal Rules of Civil Procedure does not constitute the adoption of any substantive laws. Unless the context requires otherwise, or because a party in a particular case the United States, the words "Attorney General", "United States", "State", "Court", "Judicial District", and any similar designation, in the applicable Tribal Rules of Civil Procedure or the statutes to which they refer, are deemed to refer to their counterparts under Tribal law.

15.03. Service of process in any action brought against the Tribe shall be individually on the Governor of the Tribe. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, service made in any other manner on the Tribe will be invalid and ineffective.

15.04. In any trial, case or proceeding before one of the courts of the Tribe, the court on its own motion may request the advice and assistance of employees of the United States Bureau of Indian Affairs upon any issue or matter to be considered or decided. Any testimony on issues of fact by such an employee shall be given under oath in open court, and the employee shall be subject to cross-examination by any party, in the same manner and on the same basis as any other witness. Any advice or recommendations by such an employee to the court shall also be in open court, subject to rebuttal by any party. No testimony of such an employee shall be taken, nor shall his advice or recommendations be given, except at a scheduled trial or hearing preceded by notice to all parties. The courts of the Tribe may request and obtain advice, recommendations and opinions on questions of law from attorneys of the Office of the Solicitor of the United States Department of the Interior, and the United States Department of Justice, and from the general counsel retained by the Tribe. Any such advice, recommendation or opinion obtained specifically to aid in the disposition of a pending trial, case, or proceeding shall be written, and copies shall be made available to all parties thereto prior to any decision on the subject by the court.

15.05. All persons who attend hearings of the courts of the Tribe as parties, witnesses, or spectators shall be quiet and orderly while the court is in session. No spectator shall speak out in a court session unless called as a witness. The judge may appoint a person to keep order in the courtroom. Persons who disrupt the court proceedings or are disrespectful may be ordered to leave the courtroom. Violations of this section may be punished by contempt of court.

15.06. Willful and unjustifiable misbehavior by any person which disrupts, obstructs or otherwise interferes with the conduct of any preceding by any of the courts of the Tribe, or which obstructs or interferes with the administration of justice by any of the courts of the Tribe, or which constitutes disobedience or resistance to or interference with any lawful summons, subpoena, process, order, rule, decree or command of any of the courts of the Tribe shall constitute contempt of the court.

(A) When contempt of court is committed in the presence of such court it may be punished summarily by the court. In such case an order shall then be made reciting the facts constituting the contempt, adjudging the person guilty of contempt, and prescribing the punishment therefor.

(B) When it appears to the court that contempt may have been committed out of the presence of the court, the court may issue a summons to the person so charged directing him to appear at a time and place designated for a hearing on the matter. The Court shall conduct a hearing, and if it finds him guilty of contempt, an order shall then be made reciting the facts constituting the contempt, adjudging the person guilty of contempt, and prescribing the punishment therefor.

(C) Any person found in contempt of court as specified in this Section or elsewhere in this Judicial Code or any laws of the Tribe may be fined in an amount not to exceed $5,000.00.

15.07. The court shall impose an assessment within the parameters of the tribe's Peace Code for the commission of a civil infraction. Upon an assessment being imposed for the commission of a civil infraction, the violator shall be given a signed copy of the judgment, which shall direct him to make payment to the Judicial Clerk in accordance with the terms of payment to be prescribed by the court. The court may order the assessment to be paid in installments of a schedule to be specified by the court. Willful or negligent failure to pay an assessment in accordance with the terms of the sentence shall be contempt of the Tribal Court which shall be punished by the court in the manner prescribed by this Judicial Code. In support of enforcement and satisfaction of its judgment, the Tribal Court shall have the authority to order any other persons within its jurisdiction to deliver or surrender to the Judicial Clerk or the Tribal Police Department any money, goods or other property in their possession or under their control owned by or subject to the claim of a defaulting party to any judgment; provided, however, that such order shall be issued only following notice to the defaulting party and a hearing at which he is determined to have been in default. The provisions of this Section shall be subject to any restrictions which may exist under the laws of the United States.

15.08. Upon findings of liability, the Tribal Court shall enter a judgment based upon the law and facts established at the trial.

(A) The judgment may include an award of money damages, an order to surrender property, an order to make restitution, an order to perform acts or to refrain from designated conduct, or an order granting such other remedies or relief which may be appropriate and legally permissible.

(B) The Tribal Court may assess reasonable court costs of litigation against any one or more of the parties to a case as seems appropriate in the discretion of the court. Such an assessment shall be limited to those costs representing the actual expenses incurred by the court, Judicial Clerk, or other tribal agency directly attributable to that case, and the direct, reasonable expenses of the parties incurred for the litigation.

(C) Failure of a party to comply with a judgment directed against him shall entitle the party intended to be benefited by the judgment to an order of the Tribal Court, upon notice and hearing, directing the Tribal Police Department to take into custody any money, goods, or other property of the defaulting party and, in accordance with court order, to deliver the same to the party entitled to the benefit of the judgment (creditor) but not to exceed in value any amount owed under the judgment. The willful or negligent failure of a party to comply with the terms of a judgment directed against him, with which he is able to comply, shall be contempt of the Tribal Court which shall be punished by the court in the manner prescribed by this Judicial Code. In support of enforcement and satisfaction of its judgment, the Tribal Court shall have the authority to order any other person within its jurisdiction to deliver or surrender to the Judicial Clerk or the Tribal Police Department any money, goods or other property in their possession or under their control owned by or subject to the claim of a defaulting party to any judgment; provided, however, that such order shall be issued only following notice to the defaulting party and a hearing at which he is determined to have been in default. The provisions of this Section shall be subject to any restrictions which may exist under the laws of the United States.

15.09. All searches and seizures shall be governed by the following procedures:

(A) No member of the Tribal Police Department nor any other law enforcement official of the Tribe shall search the person or property of any person, without the consent of that person, unless the search is incident to citation for civil infraction or pursuant to a Warrant for Search and Seizure issued by the Tribal Court. If the search is incident to a citation for civil infraction the official may search the alleged offender and his property then under his direct, immediate control, to locate and prevent the use of weapons and to prevent the destruction of evidence of the commission of a civil infraction.

(B) The Tribal Court shall have the authority to issue Warrants for Search and Seizure applicable to the physical person and the premises and property within the Reservation of any person. Such a warrant may be issued ex parte, without a hearing, but only upon satisfaction of the issuing judge that there is probable, lawful cause for the search and seizure. Such a warrant may be issued only upon a sworn, written complaint filed with the court, bearing the signature of the complainant or complaining witness, based upon reliable information or belief, which charges the commission of a civil infraction. No warrant for Search and Seizure shall be valid unless it bears the name and description of the person, premises or property to be searched, and describes the articles of property to be seized. The warrant shall be made subject to such terms and condition which Tribal Court deems just.

(C) Service of Warrants for Search and Seizure, and the conduct of the search and seizure pursuant thereto, shall be only by a member of the' Tribal Police Department or other duly authorized law enforcement official of the Tribe.

(D) Pursuant to either a Warrant for Search and Seizure, or as an incident to a citation for a civil infraction committed in his presence, a law enforcement official shall seize the property described in the Warrant or any objects used in furtherance of the violation of Tribal law. Upon seizure of any object, the law enforcement official shall:

(1) Prepare and sign a written inventory of all objects seized, and request the alleged violator to sign the inventory, and give copies to the Tribal Court and violator;

(2) Deliver all seized items to the Judicial Clerk as soon as possible for storage until disposition by the Tribal Court. If transportation and storage are undertaken in a reasonably safe and prudent manner, damage occurring will be at the expense of the alleged violator.


Section 16.
{Reserved for Rules Governing Criminal Procedure, if ever adopted}


Section 17.
{Reserved for Rules Governing Jury Trials, if ever adopted}


Section 18. Rules Governing Appeals.

18.01. There is hereby created an Appeals Court consisting of Tribal Council.

(A) Each Council member is an appellate judge with the Governor serving as Chief Judge, but no member shall receive any remuneration beyond that to which he is entitled as a council member.

(B) No judge of the Appeals Court shall participate in any proceeding if he has any interest therein, or any relationship with any person, the nature of which would constitute disqualification of a judge of the Tribal Court from officiating in any proceeding before him, as specified in this Judicial Code.

18.02. The Appeals Court shall have only appellate jurisdiction. Any party to any final order or final judgment of the Tribal Court shall have the right to petition for appeal of that order or judgment to the Appeals Court.

(A) A party wishing to appeal shall file a petition for appeal with the Judicial Clerk within twenty (20) days after entry by the Tribal Court of the final order or final judgment from which he seeks appeal. The petition shall be accompanied by a filing fee as may be designated unless there is submitted an affidavit by the appealing party that he is without funds to pay the filing fee. In that event the filing fee shall be waived pending appeal. The Appeals Court, if it finds that the appellant is without funds to pay the filing fee, shall order that it be permanently waived.

(B) The petition for appeal shall state the reasons for the appeal which shall be limited to the following:

(1) Lack of jurisdiction of the Tribal Court;

(2) Irregularities or improprieties in the proceedings by the Tribal Court, any witness, or any party substantially prejudicial to the rights of petitioner;

(3) Any ruling, order, decision or abuse of discretion which prevented a fair hearing or trial;

(4) Newly discovered material evidence which could not, with reasonable care, have been produced at the trial or hearing;

(5) Insufficient evidence to support the verdict, decision, order or judgment of the Tribal Court; and,

(6) An error of law substantially prejudicial to the rights of the appellant.

(C) Upon receipt of a petition for appeal, the Judicial Clerk shall promptly notify the Appeals Court, which shall convene en banc to review the petition. If it appears to the Appeals Court, acting unanimously , that the petition for appeal on its face, under a liberal review in favor of the petitioner, has no merit or fails to state any cause for a hearing, the petition shall be denied. The Appeals Court shall state in writing its order of denial and the reasons therefore, which order shall direct that the order or final judgment of the Tribal Court be executed. Copies of the order of the Appeals Court shall be served by the Judicial Clerk upon all parties to the proceeding in the Tribal Court. If it appears to one or more members of the appeals court that the petition may have merit, the court shall grant the petition and set the matter for hearing, on a date no sooner than will permit all parties to the proceeding in the Tribal Court to have at least twenty (20) days notice of the hearing and no later than forty-five (45) days after the petition is granted.

(1) Upon the petition for appeal being granted and set for hearing, the Judicial Clerk shall give notice of that hearing to all persons who were parties to the proceeding in the Tribal Court, such notice to be given not less than twenty (20) days prior to the hearing. The notice to each party other than the appellant will include a copy of the petition for appeal.

(2) Upon the petition for appeal being granted, the Judicial Clerk shall make sure that the record is complete and in order and shall make the record available to all parties for inspection and copying at the parties' expense. The record shall be made up of all papers filed in the case plus the tape recordings and any transcripts made in the case;

(3) Unless stayed by Tribal Court, after notice to all parties and hearing, the judgment remains enforceable even though an appeal is pending. In staying the effect of the judgment, the Tribal Court shall set such terms and conditions as it deems just, including the giving of a bond or security in an amount equal to the judgment plus reasonable costs of appeal. The Tribal Court, after notice to all parties and hearing, shall set such terms and conditions as it deems just governing the disposition of property which has been used as evidence and other matters necessary to preserve the court's jurisdiction during the appeal.

(4) The Chief Judge of the Appeals Court shall schedule a hearing at which the parties' arguments on appeal shall be considered. The hearing shall be scheduled no fewer than 30 days and no more than 90 days after the filing of the notice of appeal. The Judicial Clerk shall immediately notify all parties of the time and place of the hearing on appeal.

(5) A party who wishes to raise a question of procedure or request court action during an appeal shall present the question in a written motion filed with the Judicial Clerk. Other parties may file a response within five days of the filing of the motion. The Judicial Clerk shall submit copies of the motion and any responses to the Chief Judge who shall rule on the motion on his own or after consultation with the other appellate judges.

(6) Any party to an appeal shall be permitted, but not is required, to file a written brief with the Appeals Court prior to the hearing, pertaining to any matter or issue included within the petition for appeal. However, if any such brief is filed, copies of it shall be served upon all other parties to the appeal not less than two (2) days prior to the hearing. It shall be served upon such parties in the same manner as prescribed in this Judicial Code for the giving of notices.

(7) The parties may present oral arguments relevant to the issues raised by the appeal at the hearing on the appeal. Appellant shall speak first and shall have a later chance to respond briefly to any remarks made by the other parties. The Chief Judge shall set limits on the time each party is allowed to speak.

(8) In deciding any appeal, the Appeals Court shall prepare a written opinion and decision, setting forth its conclusions and order, and the reasons therefor. Its decisions shall be in the form of an order of one of the following:

(a) That the order or judgment of the Tribal Court be affirmed;

(b) That the decision of the Tribal Court be reversed, as a matter of law, and the case dismissed;

(c) That the fine in a civil infraction case be reduced, for the reason that it exceeds the legally permissible fine or is so excessive as to constitute an abuse of discretion;

(d) That the form or amount of damages or relief awarded in a civil case by the Tribal Court be reduced, increased, or modified for the reason that the award constitutes an error of law; and,

(e) That the order of judgment of the Tribal Court be reversed and the case remanded to the Tribal Court for the correction of errors, deficiencies, irregularities, improprieties, or abuse of discretion, or for a new trial on each issue which was the subject of such a defect.

(D) The Appeals Court shall order the party who loses the appeal to pay reasonable costs, unless it appears that such an order would be manifestly unjust.

(E) The Appeals Court may establish and promulgate rules of procedure for the conduct of its proceedings, which are not inconsistent with this Judicial Code or other governing and applicable law.

(F) The Appeals Court shall hear, consider and rule upon all appeals en banc, for those judges who are disqualified. Except for the granting of a petition for appeal as provided in this Code, all order, opinions and decisions of the Appeals Court shall be made upon the concurrence of a majority of the judges of that court hearing the appeal. If by reason of vacancies or disqualification the Appeals Court hearing an appeal consists of an even number, an even division of opinion shall constitute affirmance of the order or judgment of the Tribal Court.


Sections 19-50.
{Reserved for Future Use}


{Part 3. Traditional System, if ever adopted

Section 51. Establishment.


Section 52. Procedure.


Section 53. Enforcement.}

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