Ruling date set for Minuteman’s claim that ouster vote was invalid

Times Staff Writer

An Orange County judge on Tuesday said he would rule next month on whether to allow anti-illegal immigration activist Jim Gilchrist to retain control of his Minuteman Project border patrol organization.

Gilchrist, co-founder of the group, had sought an immediate restraining order Monday against the three members of the group’s seven-member board who took a 3-0 vote to oust him as president.

Superior Court Judge Randell L. Wilkinson said he would rule March 21 on Gilchrist’s request for a restraining order.

Gilchrist, 58, of Aliso Viejo, said the three board members who voted this month to remove him amid financial mismanagement allegations held only honorary positions and wielded no voting power. Documents show that in 2005 Gilchrist set up the Minuteman Project as a Delaware corporation with only one voting board member, himself.

Gilchrist said he had done nothing wrong and could fully account for the organization’s money. His spokesman, Tim Buehler, said Tuesday that Gilchrist opponents “are just in this for a power grab.”


The board members who took the vote say Gilchrist invited them on the board as voting members and that they needed to cut the connection to their co-founder because, among their other allegations, more than $400,000 of the organization’s money was unaccounted for.

Board members have taken control of the organization’s bank accounts and website.