MADERA COUNTY – Four individuals currently behind bars in connection with the armed takeover at the Chukchansi Gold Resort and Casino on Oct. 9 appeared in Madera Superior Court this morning for their arraignment on kidnapping and assault charges.
Tex McDonald, Vernon King, Tyrone Bishop and Miguel Ramos all pleaded not guilty to all charges.
The judge raised the bail amount on all four, with McDonald’s bail set at $2.45 million, King’s at $1.75 million, Bishop’s at $1.4 million, and Ramos’s set at $800.000.
Charges were filed on Oct. 31 against 15 individuals believed to have been involved in the armed takeover at the casino. All four men who appeared in court today turned themselves in to authorities. Several reportedly remain at large.
The Chukchansi Casino remains closed due to a injunction granted by the US District Court in Fresno, and a failure to produce audits required by the National Indian Gaming Commission (NIGC). The McDonald faction has repeatedly stated that they were trying to retrieve documents to satisfy the requirements of the NIGC and avoid a closure. They have also accused the Lewis/Ayala faction of stealing more than $49 million.
All parties are expected to be back in court next Wednesday for a bail review.