"I am shocked and dismayed at the level of disrespect and lack of sensitivity that Hullinger Mortuary has shown to the tribe and Mr. Serawop's family in this case," Ute Tribe Business Committee chairwoman Irene Cuch said.
Serawop's common-law wife and his family had every right to take his body from the mortuary, based on the tribal court's orders, Cuch said. He was buried Wednesday in the Randlett Cemetery "pursuant to the cultural traditions of the Ute Indian Tribe," according to tribal leaders.
Still, Hackford said her fight to retrieve her brother's body, so it can at least be reburied in a family plot in another Uintah County cemetery, is far from over.
"We have had no due process," she said, referring to the tribal court's handling of the matter.
"To do this they have to use due process, and they haven't," she said. "I'm appalled that the tribe can get away with this."
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