Rex Earl Starr, Battles, Finley
and Joe Byrd Added As Defendents
To Illegal Wire Tapping Lawsuit

Received from,
Mr. Charles W. Shipley
Shipley, Jennings & Champlin
201 West Fifth Street
Tulsa, Oklahoma

PRESS RELEASE July 2, 1998

Today in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Oklahoma in the pending case of Summerfield and Mayes v. McCullough, et al., Case No 98-CV-328B(EA), which was originally filed on May 5, 1998 and assigned to Judge Thomas Brett, the Plaintiffs filed a Motion to Amend their cause of action. The cause of action alleges violations of the federal wiretapping statute as well as violations of various civil rights statutes and previously had named as Defendants parties who in the past were, or at present are associated with the Cherokee Nation Housing Authority, as well as Mark McCullough, a businessman in Pryor, Oklahoma who has been closely associated with Joe Byrd’s political campaign as well as being one of Chief Byrd’s closest personal advisors. The Motion to Amend the Complaint filed today enlarges the number of Defendants alleged to have been involved in the illegal wiretapping activities to include present and former members of the administration of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma. The additional Defendants sought by the Plaintiffs to be joined in the suit are Rex Earl Star, General Counsel of the Cherokee Nation; Jennie Battles, Secretary-Treasurer of the Cherokee Nation; Lisa Finley, previously a personal advisor of Joe Byrd and his Press Secretary; and Joe Byrd, Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation.

Chuck Shipley, a Tulsa attorney for the Plaintiffs, today stated that “While we had heard rumors that these four individuals in the Cherokee Nation Administration had been directly involved in the illegal wiretapping activities and actually had some eye-witnesses to corroborate parts of those rumors prior to our filing the Complaint on May 5, 1998, we were reluctant to accuse the principal officers of the Cherokee Nation of participating in or directing a criminal conspiracy to wiretap without fully corroborated evidence. We have been amazed at the number of people who have stepped forward to bring information and corroboration regarding these four individuals’ participation in the illegal wiretapping scheme since our action was filed May 5th. I must say that I am disappointed to have now heard what appears to be overwhelming evidence that the Chief of the Cherokee Nation and a licensed lawyer in the State of Oklahoma have stooped to such low, mean and illegal activities in order to suppress and embarrass their political opponents. However, I would also say that given what I have seen so far in the matter, I am not surprised.”

For further information, contact Charles W. Shipley. Phone: (918-582-1720)