Joey Barbry welcomes Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser to Marksville on May 10. Barbry was indicted by a federal grand jury and removed as tribal adminstrator on May 11. He retained his elected position of tribal chairman.
Beverly Chapman-Rachal, secretary-treasurer of the Tunica-Biloxi Tribal Council, has been named temporary co-adminstrator of the tribe.
Marshall Sampson Sr., vice chairman of the Tunica-Biloxi Tribal Council, has been named temporary co-administrator of the tribe.
Joey Barbry indicted for embezzlement; to appear in federal court May 23
Tunica-Biloxi Tribal Chairman Joey Barbry was indicted by a federal grand jury in Alexandria on May 11 on charges of embezzlement from a tribal organization.
Tribal Council Vice Chairman Marshall Ray Sampson Sr. and Secretary-Treasurer Beverly Chapman-Rachal were named interim co-administrators until a permanent selection is made, the Tribal Council announced.
“Our top priority is maintaining the smooth operation of tribal government in the best interests of our members,” Sampson said in a press release. He said he and Chapman-Rachal consider it of “utmost importance” to preserve tribal integrity and fiscal responsibility to tribal members.
The indictment states that Barbry allegedly wrote non-suficient fund checks “in excess of $1,000” to Tunica-Biloxi Financial Services, a tribe-owned check-cashing service in the Paragon hotel and casino. The amount allegedly embezzled has not been released. It occurred between July 3-Nov. 16, 2014.
Barbry’s initial appearance in court is set for 2 p.m. May 23 in the Alexandria federal court before Magistrate Joseph L. Perez-Montes.
Barbry was removed from his duties as tribal adminstrator but will retain his position of tribal chairman, which he won in a 2014 election. He served as secretary-treasurer of the council for eight years prior to that. He worked in the Paragon Hotel for 19 years, starting as a bellman and rising to vice president of hotel operations before becoming full-time tribe administrtor.
His father, Earl J. Barbry Sr., served as the tribe’s first elected chairman for 36 years, dying while in office in 2013. Before then, the chief of the tribe had ruling authority.
Sampson and Rachal bring experience to their new position.
Sampson has served on the Tribal Council since 1997. He has worked at Paragon since it opened in June 1994 and is now assistant general manager of operations. He received a bachelor’s of computer science from ULL. He is a native of Avoyelles Parish and lives in Marksville. He also serves on the Avoyelles Port Commission and the United South Eastern Tribes board of directors.
Beverly Chapman-Rachal is state manager of the SCSEP in association with the Inter-tribal Council of Louisiana in Marksville. She worked at Paragon as an executive administrative assistant for over five years prior to taking that position. She was born in Houston but ws raised on the Tunica-Biloxi Reservation and graduated from Marksville High. She lives in Marksville.