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NAPI files lawsuit against Pumpkin Patch

The Daily Times staff

FARMINGTON — Navajo Agricultural Products Industry officials are suing two nontribal companies that lease land and utilize resources on the organization's farm land, according to a press release from the tribal enterprise.

Pumpkin Patch Fundraisers workers prepare to harvest pumpkins Sept. 28 at a Navajo Agricultural Products Industry farm site south of Farmington.

NAPI filed its civil lawsuit against Pumpkin Patch Fundraisers Inc. and its sister company, Upland Desert Popcorn LLC, and owners Richard and John Hamby on Tuesday in Shiprock District Court.

The tribal enterprise, located south of Farmington, is also seeking an emergency temporary restraining order and application for preliminary injunction.

Jennifer Baker, legal counsel for NAPI, said in the release the grounds for the case are based on both companies' failure to register as a foreign corporation under the Navajo Corporation Act and for their refusal to pay "a very substantial debt" owned to NAPI as required by an agreement.

In the release, Baker also claims the companies overstepped the Navajo Nation Civil Trespass Act, causing NAPI irreparable harm and damages.

Baker said the tribal enterprise is not suing the Navajo Nation, the Navajo Nation Council or the Resources and Development Committee.

"This is strictly a civil suit filed against PPF and UDP, as well as their respective owners," she said.