Utah tribal leader accused of taking gifts from Washington Redskins faces removal from office

Associated Press

A Utah tribal leader is facing removal from office, accused of taking improper gifts from a Washington Redskins foundation amid controversy over the team's name.

The Paiute Indian Tribe of Utah is expected to decide in the next 10 days whether to remove Chairwoman Gari Lafferty. On Thursday, she defended her acceptance of a signed football and a trip to Washington, D.C.

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Tribal documents allege the gifts exceed a $50 limit and her position could improperly influence the debate over the name some American Indians find derogatory.

Lafferty says the council was aware of the football and the trip she took after the Redskins' Original Americans Foundation donated vans to the tribe. She says the dispute is more about her leadership style.

A spokesman for the Redskins foundation said the dispute is an internal tribal issue.