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December

Yankton Sioux Tribe v. Podhradsky
529 F.Supp.2d 1040
No. CIV 98-4042
United States District Court, D. South Dakota, Southern Division, December 19, 2007

Subjects: Yankton Sioux Tribe of South Dakota. -- Land tenure; Yankton Sioux Tribe of South Dakota. -- Boundaries; Trust lands -- Yankton Sioux Tribe of South Dakota.

*Synopsis: Following remand, 522 U.S. 329, 118 S.Ct. 789, 139 L.Ed.2d 773, of Indian tribe's action challenging State of South Dakota's jurisdiction over lands that once fell within reservation boundaries, action was consolidated with tribe's action challenging State criminal jurisdiction over acts of tribal members on nonceded land within original reservation boundaries. The District Court, 14 F.Supp.2d 1135, entered judgment for tribe, and appeal was taken. The Court of Appeals, 188 F.3d 1010, ruling that reservation had not been disestablished but had been diminished by loss of certain lands, remanded for a determination of the boundaries of the reservation.

*Holding: The United States District Court for the District of South Dakota, Lawrence L. Piersol, J., held that:
(1) land allotted to individual Indians that remained held in trust by the federal government was “Indian country” for purposes of statute providing for federal court jurisdiction over certain offenses committed within Indian country;
(2) land within the original exterior boundaries of reservation and subsequently taken into trust by the U.S. was “Indian country”;
(3) to extent previously-allotted land within original boundaries of reservation was owned in fee by Indians and had never passed out of Indian hands, that land was “Indian country”; and
(4) to extent land held in trust for Indians was not “reservation” land, such land would nevertheless qualify as Indian country under provision relating to dependent Indian communities.
Ordered accordingly.

Assiniboine & Sioux Tribes of the Fort Peck Indian Reservation v. Norton
527 F.Supp.2d 130
Civil Action Nos. 02-0035 (JR), 02-0040(JR), 02-0253(JR), 02-0254(JR), 02- 0276(JR), 03-1603(JR), 04-0283(JR), 04-0900(JR), 04-0901(JR), 04-1126(JR), 05- 2471(JR), 05-2491(JR), 05-2492(JR), 05-2493(JR), 05-2495(JR), 05-2496(JR), 05- 2500(JR), 06-1897(JR), 06-1898(JR), 06-1899(JR), 06-1902(JR), 06-2161(JR), 06- 2162(JR), 06-2163(JR), 06-2164(JR), 06-2206(JR), 06-2212(JR), 06-2236(JR), 06- 2239(JR), 06-2240(JR), 06-2241(JR), 06-2242(JR), 06-2245(JR), 06-2247(JR), 06- 2249(JR), 06-2250(JR), 06-2254(JR)
United States District Court, District of Columbia, December 19, 2007

Subjects: Tribal trust funds -- United States -- Auditing; Tribal trust funds -- United States -- Management; Federal-Indian trust relationship; Fiduciary accountability -- United States; Breach of contract -- United States; Breach of trust -- United States; Trusts and trustees -- Administration; Trusts and trustees -- Accounting; Class actions (Civil procedure) -- United States.

*Synopsis: In 37 actions brought by various Indian tribes against the United States, alleging accounting and mismanagement of assets and funds held in trust by the United States, Government moved for a six-month remand and stay of litigation.

*Holding: On consolidation of cases, the District Court, James Robertson, J., held that remand and stay of litigation was not warranted.
Motion denied.

Tohono O'odham Nation v. United States
79 Fed.Cl. 645
No. 06-944L
United States Court of Federal Claims, December 19, 2007

Subjects: Tribal trust funds -- Tohono O'odham Nation of Arizona; Breach of trust -- United States; Trusts and trustees -- United States; Jurisdiction; Natural resources -- Tohono O'odham Nation of Arizona -- Royalties.

*Synopsis: Indian tribe brought suit against the United States alleging that the government breached its fiduciary duties as trustee of various funds and property owned by the tribe. Defendant moved to dismiss.

*Holding: The United States Court of Federal Claims, Bruggink, J., held that statute divesting the Court of Federal Claims of jurisdiction to hear claims that are already pending in another court was applicable to preclude jurisdiction over suit.
Motion granted.

County of Amador, California v. United States Department of the Interior
2007 WL 4390499
No. CIV. S-07-527 LKK/GGH
United States District Court, E.D. California, December 13, 2007

Subjects: Land into trust -- California -- Amador County; Land into trust -- Ione Band of Miwok Indians of California; Gambling on Indian reservations -- California; Indian gaming -- Ione Band of Miwok Indians of California; Casinos -- Design and construction -- Ione Band of Miwok Indians of California; United States. Administrative Procedure Act.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Plaintiff Amador County has brought the present action challenging defendant U.S. Department of Interior's legal opinion that, if taken into trust by the federal government, a parcel of land in Amador County will be eligible for gaming operations. The Ione Band of Miwok Indians, who requested that the land be taken into federal trust, has intervened as a defendant. Pending before the court are two motions to dismiss, one filed by the federal defendants and another by Ione, both of which argue that the Department of Interior's opinion is not final agency action under the Administrative Procedures Act and is thus unreviewable. As explained below, because the opinion will have no effect unless and until the federal government makes the decision to take the land into trust, the court grants the motions to dismiss.

*Holding: not yet available

Barrett v. United States
2007 WL 4303050
No. CIV-06-0968-HE
United States District Court, W.D. Oklahoma, December 5, 2007

Subjects: Income tax -- Citizen Potawatomi Nation, Oklahoma -- Members; United States. Internal Revenue Service; Tribal trust funds -- Citizen Potawatomi Nation, Oklahoma; Citizen Potawatomi Nation, Oklahoma -- Officials and employees -- Salaries.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The case presents two issues: whether the compensation Barrett received in the year 2001, as the Tribe's Chairman, is taxable income to him and, if so, whether the plaintiffs are liable for the penalty assessed pursuant to 26 U.S.C. § 6662. While the plaintiffs acknowledge that American Indians, as U.S. citizens, generally are subject to the federal income tax, they claim the compensation is not taxable income because the source of the funds used to pay Barrett was trust fund monies previously awarded by the Indian Claims Commission to the Tribe. The plaintiffs assert that those funds “have been impressed with tax exemption to their recipients,” and “[t]he “Tribe, as a governmental act, has made the conscious decision to pay the Chairman from these funds.”

*Holding: not yet available

November

Vanzandt v. Fish and Wildlife Service
524 F.Supp.2d 239
No. 05-CV-6093 CJS
United States District Court, W.D. New York, November 29, 2007

Subjects: United States. Federal Tort Claims Act; United States. Fish and Wildlife Service; United States. Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act; Searches and seizures.

*Synopsis: Plaintiff brought action under Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) alleging that Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) agents abused search warrant in order to steal historical objects from her family's private collection. FWS and its agents moved for summary judgment.

*Holding: The District Court, Siragusa, J., held that:
(1) plaintiff raised viable claim for abuse of criminal process;
(2) agent was not entitled to qualified immunity; and
(3) fact issues remained as to whether agents stole objects.
Motion denied.

Gristede's Foods, Inc. v. Unkechauge Nation
532 F.Supp.2d 439
No. 06-CV-1260 (CBA)
United States District Court, E.D. New York, November 28, 2007

Subjects: United States. Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act; Cigarettes – Sales -- Taxation; Unkechauge Nation; Shinnecock Indian Nation (N.Y.); Non-members of a tribe.

*Synopsis: Store owner brought action under Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), Lanham Act, and state law alleging that Indian tribes, tribal members, and businesses engaged in unauthorized sale of untaxed cigarettes to non-tribe members. Defendants moved to dismiss.

*Holding: The District Court, Amon, J., held that:
(1) connection between vendor's injury and tribes' alleged sale of untaxed cigarettes was too attenuated to sustain civil RICO claim;
(2) dismissal of Lanham Act false advertising claims was not warranted; and
(3) vendor had standing to assert claims under state consumer protection statutes.
Motions granted in part and denied in part.

Whitetail v. Spirit Lake Tribal Council
2007 WL 4233490
Civil File No. 2:07-cv-42
United States District Court, D. North Dakota, Northeastern Division, November 28, 2007

Subjects: Habeas corpus; Detention of persons -- Spirit Lake Tribe, North Dakota; Law -- Spirit Lake Tribe, North Dakota.

*Synopsis: Writs of habeas corpus are available in federal court to test the legality of detention ordered by an Indian tribe. 25 U.S.C. § 1303. However, the tribal exhaustion doctrine “favors exhaustion of available remedies in tribal court before a collateral or parallel federal court action may proceed.” Gaming World Intern., Ltd. v. White Earth Band of Chippewa Indians, 317 F.3d 840, 849 (8th Cir.2003). This requirement is a matter of comity but has some flexibility, Necklace v. Tribal Court of the Three Affiliated Tribes of the Fort Berthold Reservation, 554 F.2d 845, 846 (8th Cir.1977), and is “prudential, rather than jurisdictional.” Gaming World, 317 F.3d at 849.

*Holding: not yet available

Rosales v. United States
2007 WL 4233060
No. 07cv0624
United States District Court, S.D. California, November 28, 2007

Subjects: Casinos -- Design and construction -- Jamul Indian Village of California; Burial sites -- Jamul Indian Village of California; United States. Native American Graves and Repatriation Act; Contested elections -- Jamul Indian Village of California; Constitutions -- Jamul Indian Village of California; Indian blood quantum -- Jamul Indian Village of California; United States. Bureau of Indian Affairs; United States. Indian Reorganization Act; United States. Administrative Procedure Act.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Plaintiffs bring this action against the federal government for violations of NAGPRA. Plaintiffs request the Court stop construction activities on three pieces of land known as Parcels 04, 05, and 06. Plaintiffs allege they know human remains and associated items are located on those parcels. Plaintiffs allege “grading, excavation, demolition, operation of heavy equipment, moving dirt and/or gravel, and other construction activities” are presently occurring on the land, “thereby mutilating, disinterring, removing, excavating, and otherwise disturbing the Native Americans [sic] human remains” and associated items. Plaintiffs and defendants agree Parcel 05 is tribal land for the purposes of NAGPRA and title to Parcel 06 is held by the Catholic Diocese.

*Holding: not yet available

Lummi Indian Nation v. State of Washington
2007 WL 4190400
No. C01-0047Z
United States District Court, W.D. Washington, at Seattle, November 20, 2007

Subjects: Treaty of Point Elliott (1855); Groundwater -- Lummi Tribe of the Lummi Reservation, Washington; Reserved water rights -- Lummi Tribe of the Lummi Reservation, Washington; Indian reservations -- Defined; Indian Country (U.S.) -- Defined; Reserved water rights -- Defined.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) THIS MATTER comes before the Court on a Joint Motion to Approve Settlement brought by plaintiff United States, plaintiff-intervenor Lummi Nation, and defendants Washington State Department of Ecology (“Ecology”), Whatcom County, the Georgia Manor Water Association, the Harnden Island View Water Association, and the Sunset Water Association (collectively, the “Water Associations”), and various property owners represented by Eugene Knapp of Barron Smith Daugert PLLC. By Order dated November 2, 2007, docket no. 1262, the Court conditionally approved the settlement and directed the parties to file the final Settlement Agreement. Having now reviewed the final Settlement Agreement, and all papers related thereto, the Court does hereby ORDER AND ADJUDGE:

*Holding: not yet available

All Mission Indian Housing Authority v. Magante
526 F.Supp.2d 1112
No. 06cv1678 BTM (NLS)
United States District Court, S.D. California, November 19, 2007

Subjects: United States. Native American Housing Assistance and Self-Determination Act of 1996; All Mission Indian Housing Authority; Eviction; Housing authorities -- Tribes; Landlord and tenant.

*Synopsis: Indian housing authority, which was federally-sanctioned and federally-funded, brought unlawful detainer action seeking to evict tenants from home which housing authority was renting to them based on the tenants' failure to pay rent.

*Holding: The District Court, Barry Ted Moskowitz, J., held that:
(1) federal court did not have jurisdiction, pursuant to Native American Housing Assistance and Self-Determination Act (NAHASDA), to hear action, and
(2) Indian housing authority did not assert cause of action cognizable under federal common law.
Case dismissed.

United States v. Littlejohn
2007 WL 4079086
No. 2:05CR5
United States District Court, W.D. North Carolina, Bryson City Division, November 15, 2007

Subjects: Restitution -- Members -- Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina; Profit-sharing -- Members -- Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina; Attachment and garnishment -- North Carolina -- Members -- Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina; Casinos -- Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina; Child support -- Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The Government now seeks to garnish the Defendant's per capita distribution of gaming revenues received twice a year from the Tribe. The Tribe has answered that such funds are immune from garnishment due to the sovereign nature of the Tribe. The Defendant, Littlejohn, has also answered that the funds are immune because there is a child support Order pending in the Cherokee Tribal Court, which must be paid from the same distribution.

*Holding: not yet available

United States v. Morrison
521 F.Supp.2d 246
No. 04-CR-699 (DRH)(S-2)
United States District Court, E.D. New York, November 9, 2007

Subjects: Cigarettes -- Labeling -- New York (State); United States. Contraband Cigarette Trafficking Act.

*Synopsis: Defendant charged with multiple counts of aiding and abetting the selling and of contraband cigarettes lacking valid state tax stamps in violation of the Contraband Cigarettes Trafficking Act (CCTA) moved to dismiss the indictment. The United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York denied motion. Defendant moved for reconsideration and again moved to dismiss the charges.

*Holding: The District Court, Hurley, Senior District Judge, held that:
(1) motion for reconsideration would be denied, and
(2) the CCTA was not void for vagueness as applied to crime of aiding and abetting the selling of untaxed cigarettes off of a Native American reservation in New York State.
Motions denied.

First Specialty Insurance Corporation v. Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde Community of Oregon
2007 WL 3283699
Civil No. 07-05-KI
United States District Court, D. Oregon, November 2, 2007

Subjects: Contracts -- Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde Community of Oregon; First Specialty Insurance Corp.; Investment advisors; Jurisdiction -- Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde Community of Oregon; Fraud.

*Synopsis: (from the opnion) The Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde Community of Oregon (“Tribe”) sued its investment advisors in Multnomah County Circuit Court, which sent the action to arbitration pursuant to an agreement between the parties. The Tribe lost in arbitration and the arbitrators awarded the investment advisors attorney fees and costs. The Tribe then brought a successful action in its tribal court system to vacate the arbitration award. First Specialty Insurance Corporation (“FSIC”), the successor by assignment to the investment advisors, brought the action now before me asking this court to declare the tribal court's vacation of the arbitration award invalid and to enter judgment on the arbitration award. Before the court are the Tribe's (# 15) and FSIC's (# 11) Cross Motions for Summary Judgment. For the reasons below, I conclude that the Tribal Court had jurisdiction and grant comity to its ruling.

*Holding: not yet available

U.S. ex rel Lummi Indian Nation v. Washington
2007 WL 3273545
No. C01-0047Z
United States District Court, W.D. Washington, at Seattle, November 2, 2007

Subjects: Treaty of Point Elliott (1855); Groundwater -- Lummi Tribe of the Lummi Reservation, Washington; Reserved water rights -- Lummi Tribe of the Lummi Reservation, Washington; Indian reservations -- Defined; Indian Country (U.S.) -- Defined; Reserved water rights -- Defined.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) After protracted negotiations, Ecology, Whatcom County, the Water Associations, and substantially all of the remaining property owners have reached agreement with the United States and the Lummi Nation, pursuant to which water is allocated based on scientific principles and under which future disputes can be efficiently resolved.

*Holding: not yet available

October

LECG, LLC v. Seneca Nation of Indians
518 F.Supp.2d 274
Civil Action No. 06-1303(RCL)
United States District Court, District of Columbia, October 31, 2007

Subjects: Contracts -- Seneca Nation of New York; LECG, LLC; Jurisdiction -- Seneca Nation of New York; Exhaustion of tribal remedies; Auditing, Internal -- Seneca Nation of New York.

*Synopsis: Provider of forensic accounting and consulting services related to independent counsel's review of financial transactions and other issues regarding construction, financing, management, and operation of Indian tribe's casino business brought action against tribe, seeking enforcement of binding arbitration provision in parties' agreement. Tribe moved to stay the action pending exhaustion of ongoing tribal court proceedings.

*Holding: The District Court, Lamberth, J., held that:
(1) provider failed to exhaust its tribal remedies;
(2) arbitration clause in parties' agreement did not negate requirements of tribal exhaustion doctrine; and
(3) provider was not excepted from exhaustion of tribal remedies requirement.
Motion granted.

New York v. Shinnecock Indian Nation
523 F.Supp.2d 185
Nos. 03-CV-3243 (JFB)(ARL), 03-CV-3466 (JFB)(ARL)
United States District Court, E.D. New York, October 30, 2007

Subjects: Reclamation of land -- New York (State) -- Shinnecock Indian Nation, New York; Land tenure -- Shinnecock Indian Nation, New York -- New York (State) -- Suffolk County; Casinos -- Design and construction -- Shinnecock Indian Nation, New York -- New York (State) -- Suffolk County.

*Synopsis: State and municipality sued Shinnecock Nation, seeking to bar construction and operation of gaming casino on land allegedly owned by tribe. Preliminary injunction barring construction was granted, 280 F.Supp.2d 1, and parties' cross-motions for summary judgment were denied, 400 F.Supp.2d 486.

*Holding: Following bench trial, the District Court, Joseph F. Bianco, J., held that:
(1) nation's aboriginal title to land at issue was extinguished;
(2) proposed development was barred under Sherrill doctrine;
(3) operation of casino would have violated state anti-gaming laws;
(4) sovereign immunity did not bar action; and
(5) permanent injunction would properly issue.
Judgment for plaintiffs.

Me-Wuk Indian Community of the Wilton Rancheria v. Kempthorne
246 F.R.D. 315
Civil Action No. 07-412 (RCL)
United States District Court, District of Columbia, October 24, 2007

Subjects: Federal recognition of Indian tribes -- Me-Wuk Indian Community of the Wilton Rancheria.

*Synopsis: In Indian group's action seeking restoration of status as a federally recognized tribe, second group, which had brought a complaint in the Northern District of California seeking the same recognition, moved to intervene. First group opposed the motion and, in the alternative, asked the Court to limit scope of the claims to be set forth in the complaint-in-intervention. Secretary of the Interior (DOI) moved to transfer venue to the Eastern District of California and, after competing group indicated that if allowed to intervene, it would move to transfer venue to the Northern District of California, DOI indicated it would support transfer to that District.

*Holding: The District Court, Royce C. Lamberth, J., held that:
(1) putative intervenor had standing to intervene;
(2) putative intervenor had a legally protectable interest in tribe's restoration to federally recognized status;
(3) putative intervenor showed that its interest might not be adequately represented by the parties;
(4) permitting intervention did not impermissibly broaden the scope of the litigation; and
(5) convenience of the parties and witnesses favored transfer to Northern District of California.
Ordered accordingly.

Southern Ute Indian Tribe v. Leavitt
2007 WL 7731370
Civil No. 05–988 WJ/LAM.
United States District Court, D. New Mexico, October 18, 2007

*Synopsis: (from the opinion)" In a Memorandum, Opinion and Order entered on June 15, 2007 (Doc. 50), the Court decided the purely legal issue whether the Defendants had discretion under the Indian Self–Determination and Education Assistance Act, 25 U.S.C. §§ 450 through 458bbb–2 (“ISDA”), to decline to enter into a contract with the Plaintiff Tribe (“Tribe”) to assume control over and management of the programs, functions services and activities of the Southern Ute Health Center. I granted Plaintiff's Motion for Preliminary Injunction, and denied Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment: FN1"

*Holdings: (not yet available)

Oneida Tribe of Indians of Wisconsin v. Village of Hobart Wisconsin
2007 WL 3025495
No. 06-C-1302
United States District Court, E.D. Wisconsin, October 15, 2007

Subjects: Land tenure -- Oneida Tribe of Indians of Wisconsin; Land tenure -- Hobart (Wis.); Real property -- Sales -- Wisconsin -- Hobart.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The Oneida Tribe of Indians of Wisconsin filed this action against the Village of Hobart seeking a determination that property located within the original boundaries of the Tribe's reservation that was recently purchased from non-tribal members reverts to reservation status and is not subject to state and local laws governing land use, taxation, and condemnation.

*Holding: not yet available

Village of Pender v. Parker
2007 WL 2914871
No. 4:07CV3101
United States District Court, D. Nebraska, October 4, 2007

Subjects: Villages -- On Indian reservations -- Omaha Tribe of Nebraska; Alcoholic beverages -- Sales -- Nebraska -- Pender -- Tribal supervision -- Omaha Tribe of Nebraska; Pender (Neb.).

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) This case raises the fascinating and difficult question of whether or not the Village of Pender, and the other plaintiffs' businesses, are physically within the Omaha Indian reservation such that the Omaha Tribe may regulate and tax liquor sales in Pender.

*Holding: not yet available

Sault Ste. Marie tribe of Chippewa Indians v. United States
2007 WL 2914236
No. 2:06-cv-276
United States District Court, W.D. Michigan, Northern Division, October 3, 2007

Subjects: Gambling -- Law and legislation -- Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians of Michigan; Tribal law drafting -- Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians of Michigan -- Federal supervision; National Indian Gaming Commission (U.S.); United States. Administrative Procedure Act; Gambling -- On Indian reservations -- Michigan -- St. Ignace.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) In this action, the Tribe challenges the decision of the Defendants to disapprove the Tribe's request that it be permitted to game on a parcel of land in St. Ignace, Michigan.

*Holding: not yet available

September

Cheyenne-Arapaho Tribes of Oklahoma v. United States
517 F.Supp.2d 365
Civil Action No. 06-0519 (PLF)
United States District Court, District of Columbia, September 27, 2007

Subjects: Cheyenne-Arapaho Tribes of Oklahoma -- Compensation for taking; United States. Quiet Title Act; Fort Reno Military Reserve; Treaties -- Cheyenne-Arapaho Tribes of Oklahoma; Sovereign immunity -- United States.

*Synopsis: Indian tribes, alleging they were not adequately compensated for reservation lands used for a military reserve, brought action seeking declaratory relief and an accounting for mining rights. Government moved to dismiss or for summary judgment, and tribes cross-moved for a continuance to permit discovery.

*Holding: The District Court, Paul L. Friedman, J., held that tribes' claims were barred by the statute of limitations in the Quiet Title Act.
Dismissed.

Aroostook Band of Micmacs v. Ryan
2007 WL 2816183
Civil No. 03-24-B-K
United States District Court, D. Maine, September 27, 2007

Subjects: Sovereignty -- Aroostook Band of Micmac Indians of Maine; Sovereign immunity -- Aroostook Band of Micmac Indians of Maine; Maine Human Rights Commission; Maine. Maine Human Rights Act; Maine. Maine Whistle Blower Protection Act; Maine. Maine Micmac Settlement Act; Jurisdiction -- Maine; Jurisdiction -- United States; Employees -- Dismissal of; Aroostook Band of Micmac Indians of Maine -- Legal status, laws, etc. -- Maine.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The Aroostook Band of Micmacs contends that it is not subject to regulatory oversight by the Maine Human Rights Commission or to civil suits brought against the Band by Maine citizens under the Maine Human Rights Act (MHRA) and the Maine Whistleblower Protection Act (MWPA). The Band's various immunity arguments in support of this proposition were rejected by the Court of Appeals in Aroostook Band of Micmacs v. Ayoob, 484 F.3d 41 (1st Cir.2007). The Band has two remaining arguments. The first, asserted in the fourth count of the Band's amended complaint, is that Title VII, which exempts Indian tribes from its coverage, preempts the MHRA and the MWPA and precludes the State of Maine from regulating the Band where Congress has chosen not to. (Pl.'s Mot. for Summ. J. at 28-35, Doc. No. 41; Pl.'s Supp. Brief at 1-3, Doc. No. 140; Am. Compl. ¶¶ 81-88, Doc. No. 28.) The second argument, asserted in the fifth count, is that neither the MHRA nor the MWPA can be construed to include the Band within their respective definitions of “employer,” because the Band cannot be regarded as a “person” under Maine law.

*Holding: not yet available

Wolfchild v. United States
78 Fed.Cl. 472
Nos. 03-2648L, 01-568L
United States Court of Federal Claims, September 26, 2007

Subjects: Fiduciary accountability -- United States; Trusts and trustees – Accounting; Breach of trust -- United States; Mdewakanton Indians; Jurisdiction -- United States; United States. Court of Federal Claims.

*Synopsis: Lineal descendants of Mdewakanton Sioux who were loyal to the United States during the Sioux Outbreak in Minnesota during 1862 brought suit against the United States for breach of trust originally provided for the benefit of loyal Mdewakanton. Partial summary judgment finding breach of trust was entered in favor of plaintiffs. Defendant filed motion for interlocutory appeal.

*Holding: The United States Court of Federal Claims, Lettow, J., held that:
(1) question whether the Lower Sioux, Prairie Island and Shakopee Indian Communities act as agents of the United States as a result of a 1980 Act would not be certified for interlocutory appeal, and
(2) question whether a trust was created as a consequence of 1888, 1889, and 1890 Appropriations Acts for the benefit of loyal Mdewakanton Sioux and their lineal descendants, and question whether Congress terminated the trust with enactment of 1980 Act, would be certified for interlocutory appeal.
Motion granted in part and denied.

Native American Arts. Inc. v. Duck House, Inc.
2007 WL 2789274
No. 05 C 2176
United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division, September 20, 2007

Subjects: Native American Arts (U.S.); Duck House, Inc.; United States. Indian Arts and Crafts Enforcement Act of 2000; Indian craft -- Defined; Indian art -- Defined.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Plaintiff Native American Arts, Inc. (“NAA”) alleges it is an “Indian arts and craft organization.” See 25 U.S.C. 305e(d) (4) (“any legally established arts and crafts marketing organization composed of members of Indian tribes”). Plaintiff alleges that defendant Duck House, Inc. has violated Indian Arts and Crafts Acts (collectively “IACA”) codified at 25 U.S.C. §§ 305-10. Plaintiff alleges that defendant has violated the IACA by directly or indirectly advertising, marketing, distributing, and selling goods, including Indian-clothed dolls, that are falsely suggested to be Indian products or Indian produced.

*Holding: not yet available

GreyBuffalo v. Kingston
581 F.Supp.2d 1034
No. 06-C-504-C
United States District Court,W.D. Wisconsin September 18, 2007 - Added 1/5/09

Subjects:

*Synopsis: State inmate brought s 1983 action for declaratory and injunctive relief, challenging, on First Amendment grounds, prison officials' actions in confiscating two documents as "gang literature" and disciplining him for possessing documents. Officials moved for summary judgment.

*Holding:The District Court, Barbara B. Crabb, J., held that:
(1) interpreting prison regulation to prohibit inmates from possessing literature of any group that had not been sanctioned by prison officials was exaggerated response to legitimate security interests that violated First Amendment;
(2) history of civil rights organization referenced in seized document did not permit reasonable conclusion that inmate's possession of document implicated legitimate interest in preventing gang activity or prison security;
(3) declaration that officials' confiscation of document referring to civil rights organization and injunction requiring expungement from prison records of finding that inmate's possession of document violated prison rules were appropriate remedies for First Amendment violation;
(4) officials could reasonably conclude that inmate's possession of code of conduct for prisoner group that was created to enable "self-protection" of Native American prisoners could lead to future security problems; and
(5) officials did not violate inmate's free speech rights when it prohibited and disciplined inmate for possessing code of conduct for prisoner group that was created to enable "self-protection" of Native American prisoners.
Ordered accordingly.

Oenga v. United States
78 Fed.Cl. 427
No. 06-491 L
United States Court of Federal Claims, September 13, 2007

Subjects: Indian allotments -- Alaska; Breach of trust -- United States; Oil and gas production -- On Indian reservations; Breach of trust -- United States; Trusts and trustees -- Accounting; Payment -- United States; United States. Indian Mineral Leasing Act of 1938.

*Synopsis: Percentage owners of surface estate of a 40-acre Alaska Native Allotment brought suit against the United States alleging that the government committed a breach of trust by failing to collect on their behalf the proper rents and royalties due on lease of 20 acres for oil and gas production facilities. Oil companies which had interests in the lease intervened as defendants. Plaintiffs moved to compel production of documents by one of the intervenors. Alaskan native entity intervened for sole purpose of responding to motion to compel.

*Holding: The United States Court of Federal Claims, Damich, Chief Judge, held that plaintiffs were entitled to production of documents concerning oil company's lease of similar Native Alaskan surface interest at nearby oil field, as documents concerning comparable transaction were relevant to issue whether government entered into a lease of plaintiffs' property that did not return a fair annual rental as required by Indian Long-Term Leasing Act.
Motion granted.

Breakthrough Management Group, Inc. v. Chukchansi Gold Casino and Resort
2007 WL 2701995
Civil Action No. 06-cv-01596-MSK-KLM
United States District Court, D. Colorado, September 12, 2007

Subjects: Training -- Breakthrough Management Group, Inc.; Casinos -- Officials and employees -- Picayune Rancheria of Chukchansi Indians of California; Copyright infringement -- Picayune Rancheria of Chukchansi Indians of California; Jurisdiction -- United States; Sovereign immunity -- Picayune Rancheria of Chukchansi Indians of California.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The primary focus of all of the Defendants' motions are an assertion of sovereign immunity, an argument that implicates the Court's subject-matter jurisdiction. E.F. W. v. St. Stephen's Indian High School, 264 F.3d 1297, 1302-03 (10th Cir.2001); Fletcher v. United States, 116 F.3d 1315, 1324 (10th Cir.1997).

*Holding: not yet available

Oglala Sioux Tribe v. C & W Enterprises, Inc.
516 F.Supp.2d 1044
No. CIV. 07-5024-KES
United States District Court, D. South Dakota, Western Division, September 10, 2007

Subjects: Jurisdiction -- South Dakota; Oglala Sioux Tribe of the Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota; Sovereign immunity -- Oglala Sioux Tribe of the Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota; Contracts -- Oglala Sioux Tribe of the Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota; Roads -- Design and construction -- Oglala Sioux Tribe of the Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota; Indian business enterprises -- C & W Enterprises, Inc.; Breach of contract -- Oglala Sioux Tribe of the Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota.

*Synopsis: After an arbitrator ruled in favor of road construction company in its dispute with Indian tribe over four contracts, company petitioned in a South Dakota state court for confirmation of arbitration award and entry of judgment. Tribe filed action in federal court seeking declaratory judgment that the state court lacked jurisdiction or a permanent injunction prohibiting company from pursuing its claim in state court. Following denial, 516 F.Supp.2d 1039, 2007 WL 2745697, of company's motion to dismiss, the state court entered default judgment for company and granted two executions of the judgment. After tribe received a tribal court order vacating the arbitration award, it moved in federal court to vacate the executions and enjoin the state court from conducting further proceedings.

*Holding: The District Court, Karen E. Schreier, Chief Judge, held that:
(1) tribe had a substantial likelihood of success on the merits;
(2) tribe established that it might suffer irreparable harm as result of state court's notice of levy against tribal funds; and
(3) potential harm to tribe resulting from state court's notice of levy outweighed company's concern regarding its ability to collect state court judgment.
Injunction granted and executions vacated.

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. Navajo Health Fundation-Sage Memorial Hospital, Inc.
2007 WL 2683825
No. CV-06-2125-PCT-DGC
United States District Court, D. Arizona, September 7, 2007

Subjects: Health facilities -- Navajo Nation, Arizona, New Mexico & Utah; United States. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission; United States. Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title 7; Discrimination in employment -- Navajo Nation, Arizona, New Mexico & Utah; Indian preference in hiring; Government agencies -- Tribes -- Defined; Sovereignty -- Government agencies -- Navajo Nation, Arizona, New Mexico & Utah.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion)Plaintiff Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed a complaint against Defendant Navajo Health Foundation-Sage Memorial Hospital, Inc. (“Sage Hospital”). Plaintiff brought this action pursuant to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq. Plaintiff alleges that Defendant discriminated against several employees based on their race and national origin. Plaintiff further alleges that Defendant retaliated against the employees after they complained and filed EEOC charges.

*Holding: not yet available

Gasplus, L.L.C. v. U.S. Department of Interior
510 F.Supp.2d 18
Civil Action No. 03-1902 (RMC)
United States District Court, District of Columbia, September 6, 2007

Subjects: Gas distribution -- Pueblo of Nambe, New Mexico; Contracts -- Pueblo of Nambe, New Mexico -- Federal supervision; Sovereignty -- Pueblo of Nambe, New Mexico; GasPlus; United States. Administrative Procedure Act.

*Synopsis: Gasoline distribution company sued the Department of the Interior (DOI), challenging under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) a decision of the DOI's Acting Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs, which determined that a contract between an Indian tribe and the company was invalid. The parties cross-moved for summary judgment.

*Holding: The District Court, Rosemary M. Collyer, J., held that:
(1) the company had standing, and
(2) the management contract did not encumber Indian land.
Plaintiff's motion granted.

Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska v. Morrison
512 F.Supp.2d 1182
No. 02-4070-JTM
United States District Court, D. Kansas, September 6, 2007

Subjects: Kansas. Motor-Vehicle Fuel Tax Act; Motor fuels -- Taxation -- Kansas; Imports -- Kansas; Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska; Licenses -- HCI Distribution Corp. (Neb.); Service stations -- Sac & Fox Nation of Missouri in Kansas and Nebraska; Service stations -- Kickapoo Tribe of Indians of the Kickapoo Reservation in Kansas.

*Synopsis: In Indian tribes' action to restrain enforcement by State of Kansas of tax on use or sale and delivery of motor vehicle fuel between plaintiffs, after Court of Appeals, 341 F.3d 1202, affirmed grant, 216 F.Supp.2d 1226, of injunction requiring State to return property seized from Indian tribe, the District Court, 2005 WL 1683970, certified question. The Kansas Supreme Court, 283 Kan. 64, 150 P.3d 892, answered certified question, and tribes moved for summary judgment and for imposition of sanctions based on State's failure to comply with injunction.

*Holding: The District Court, J. Thomas Marten, J., held that:
(1) tribes were not required to pay state tax on use or sale and delivery of motor vehicle fuel imported by one tribe and sold to other tribes on their reservations, and
(2) imposition of sanctions was not warranted.
Motions granted in part and denied in part.

Robinson v. United States
2007 WL 2580612
No. Cv. S-04-0734 RRB KJM
United States District Court, E.D. California, September 5, 2007

Subjects: Indian land transfers -- California -- Butte County; Gambling on Indian reservations -- California; Indian gaming -- Mooretown Rancheria of Maidu Indians of California ; Casinos -- Mooretown Rancheria of Maidu Indians of California; Servitudes -- California -- Butte County.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Plaintiffs Dennis Robinson, Spencer Robinson, Jr., Cynthia Robinson, and Vickie Robinson allege that the United States interfered with their easement for road and utility purposes.

*Holding: not yet available

August

Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians v. United States
2007 WL 2479293
No. 2:06-cv-276
United States District Court, W.D. Michigan, Northern Division, August 28, 2007

Subjects: Gambling -- Law and legislation -- Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians of Michigan; Tribal law drafting -- Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians of Michigan -- Federal supervision; National Indian Gaming Commission (U.S.); United States. Administrative Procedure Act; Gambling -- On Indian reservations -- Michigan -- St. Ignace.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians (hereinafter “the Tribe”), filed this action against the United States of America, the United States Department of the Interior (hereinafter “the Department”), Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne, and Philip N. Hogen, Chairman of the National Indian Gaming Commission (NIGC). The Complaint was filed on November 8, 2006, pursuant to the Administrative Procedures Act, 5 U.S.C. §§ 701-06, challenging the NIGC's final decision and order disapproving a proposed amendment to the Tribe's gaming ordinance that would have permitted gaming on a parcel of land in St. Ignace, Michigan.

*Holding: not yet available

City of New York v. Milhelm Attea and Bros., Inc.
2007 WL 2460673
No. 06 CV 3620 (CBA)
United States District Court, E.D. New York, August 24, 2007

Subjects: Cigarettes -- Labeling -- New York (State); United States. Contraband Cigarette Trafficking Act.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The City of New York has brought an Amended Complaint against the above-captioned defendants, a group of cigarette wholesalers who are state licensed cigarette stamping agents. The principal contention of the City is that the wholesalers violate the Contraband Cigarette Trafficking Act (“CCTA”), 18 U.S.C. § 2341 et seq., by shipping in excess of 10,000 unstamped cigarettes to Native Americans who re-sell the cigarettes to the public.

*Holding: not yet available

BGA v. Ulster County, New York
2007 WL 2454220
No. 1:06-CV-0095 (GLS/RFT)
United States District Court, N.D. New York, August 23, 2007

Subjects: Federal recognition of Indian tribes -- Western Mohegan Tribe and Nation (New York); New York (State); Real property -- Taxation -- Western Mohegan Tribe and Nation (New York); New York (State); Public land sales -- New York -- Ulster County.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Plaintiff Indian tribe seeks federal recognition of its sovereignty as an Indian Nation and exemption from future taxation of tribal property in Ulster County.

*Holding: not yet available

United States v. State of Washington
2007 WL 2437166
No. CV 9213RSM
United States District Court, W.D. Washington, at Seattle, August 22, 2007

Subjects: Swinomish Indians of the Swinomish Reservation, Washington; Samish Indian Tribe, Washington; Lummi Tribe of the Lummi Reservation, Washington; Washington (State); Treaty rights -- Tribes -- Washington (State); Fishing rights -- Tribes -- Washington (State); Treaty of Point Elliott (1855); Culverts -- Design and construction -- Washington (State); Fishes -- Habitat -- Conservation.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) This subproceeding arises from the language in Article III of the 1855 Treaty of Point Elliot (“Stevens Treaties”) in which the Tribes were promised that “[t]he right of taking fish, at all usual and accustomed grounds and stations, is further secured to said Indians, in common with all citizens of the Territory ...” Dkt. # 287-2. The Tribes, in their Request for Determination, state that they brought this action to enforce a duty upon the State of Washington to refrain from constructing and maintaining culverts under State roads that degrade fish habitat so that adult fish production is reduced, which in turn reduces the number of fish available for harvest by the Tribes. In part due to the reduction of harvestable fish caused by those actions of the State, the ability of the Tribes to achieve a moderate living from their Treaty fisheries has been impaired.

*Holding: not yet available

Akiachak Native Community v. Department of Interior
502 F.Supp.2d 64
Civil Action No. 06-969 (RWR)
United States District Court, District of Columbia, August 21, 2007

Subjects: Land into trust -- Akiachak Native Community (AK); United States. Administrative Procedure Act; United States. Indian Reorganization Act; Land into trust -- Tribes -- Alaska; United States. Indian Reorganization Act.

*Synopsis: In action challenging regulation which precluded most Alaskan Indian tribes from acquiring land in trust pursuant to the Indian Reorganization Act (IRA), Department of the Interior (DOI) moved to transfer venue to the District of Alaska.

*Holding: The District Court, Roberts, J., held that:
(1) private-interest factors weighed in favor of District of Columbia as the more appropriate venue for action, and
(2) public-interest factor, when balanced against private-interest factors, did not support transfer.
Motion denied.

United States v. Newmont USA Limited
504 F.Supp.2d 1050
No. CV-05-020-JLQ
United States District Court, E.D. Washington, August 21, 2007

Subjects: United States. Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980; Liability (Law) -- United States; Strip mining -- On Indian reservations -- Spokane Tribe of the Spokane Reservation, Washington; Superfund sites -- On Indian reservations -- Spokane Tribe of the Spokane Reservation, Washington; Newmont USA Limited; Midnite Mines, Inc.

*Synopsis: United States brought action against mining companies under Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) for clean up of former open-pit uranium mine located on Indian reservation. Companies filed counterclaims to hold United States liable for response costs as site's owner. Parties filed cross-motions for summary judgment.

*Holding: The District Court, Quackenbush, Senior Judge, held that:
(1) United States was owner of mine for CERCLA purposes, and
(2) counterclaims were not barred by CERCLA provision limiting fiduciary's liability to value of trust assets.
Companies' motion granted.

Fry v. Colville Tribal Court of the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation
2007 WL 2405002
No. CV-07-0178-EFS
United States District Court, E.D. Washington, August 17, 2007

Subjects: Contracts -- Colville Reservation, Confederated Tribes of the, Washington -- Members; Contracts -- Non-members of a tribe; Jurisdiction -- United States; Jurisdiction -- Colville Reservation, Confederated Tribes of the, Washington.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) This case arises out of a contract dispute between Lawrence Fry, a member of the Colville Tribe, and his son Richard Fry, a nonmember of the Colville Tribe. In 2001, Lawrence Fry filed an action in the Colville Tribal Court for unjust enrichment, forcible detainer, and partnership accounting (Ct.Rec.6-2). During the course of the litigation, Richard Fry filed a counterclaim, moved for an order finding Lawrence Fry in contempt, and obtained an order requiring Lawrence Fry to turn over vehicles. The tribal court action was initially settled by the parties' agreement to a stipulated judgment which included a clause maintaining jurisdiction in the tribal court for purposes of enforcement. Id. The stipulated judgment was intended to resolve the contract dispute between the Frys and provided for disposal of a significant amount of personal property as well as a fee parcel of land within the boundaries of the reservation owned by Richard Fry, the nonmember.

*Holding: not yet available

Oglala Sioux Tribe v. C & W Enterprises, Inc.
516 F.Supp.2d 1039
No. CIV. 07-5024-KES
United States District Court, D. South Dakota, Western Division, August 13, 2007

Subjects: Mining leases -- Oglala Sioux Tribe of the Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota; Roads -- Contracts -- -- Oglala Sioux Tribe of the Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota; Sand and gravel plants -- Oglala Sioux Tribe of the Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota; Arbitration (Administrative law).

*Synopsis: Indian tribe brought action to enjoin contractor's state court action against it arising from dispute over road construction project. Contractor moved to dismiss complaint.

*Holding: The District Court, Schreier, Chief Judge, held that tribe's action fell within district court's federal question jurisdiction.
Motion denied.

Crosby Lodge, Inc. v. National Indian Gaming Commission
2007 WL 2318581
No. 3:06-CV-00657-LRH-RAM
United States District Court, D. Nevada, August 10, 2007

Subjects: Business enterprises -- On Indian reservations -- Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe of the Pyramid Lake Reservation, Nevada; Slot machines -- On Indian reservations -- Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe of the Pyramid Lake Reservation, Nevada;; Crosby Lodge, Inc.; Revenue sharing -- Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe of the Pyramid Lake Reservation, Nevada; Profit sharing -- Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe of the Pyramid Lake Reservation, Nevada. National Indian Gaming Commission (U.S.); Gambling on Indian reservations -- Federal supervision.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Crosby is a Nevada corporation licensed as a Class II gaming operation by the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe. (First Am. Compl. (# 23) ¶¶ 5, 27.) Crosby operates a business on the Paiute Lake Indian Reservation in Washoe County, Nevada. The business consists of, among other things, a convenience store, bar, and gas station, and also operates fifteen slot machines. Id. ¶¶ 27-28. Tribal Defendants are demanding payment from Crosby in the amount of $79,282 pursuant to 25 C.F.R. § 522.10(c), which was enacted by the NIGC pursuant to provisions of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (“IGRA”), 25 U.S.C. §§ 2701, et seq. (First Am. Compl. (# 23) ¶¶ 31, 36, 38.) 25 C.F.R. § 522.10(c) requires that “not less than 60 percent of the net revenues [from individually owned gaming operations on tribal lands] be income to the Tribe.” 25 C.F.R. § 522.10(c).

*Holding: not yet available

State of New York v. Oneida Indian Nation of New York
2007 WL 2287878
No. 1:95-CV-554 (LEK/RFT)
United States District Court, N.D. New York, August 7, 2007

Subjects: Turning Stone Casino (N.Y.); Intergovernmental agreements -- Oneida Nation of New York ; Indian gaming -- Oneida Nation of New York; Instant Multi Game.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Plaintiffs' first claim alleges that the Nation's operation of IMG at Turning Stone violates the terms of the Compact because the State did not properly approve IMG's deployment. ..... Plaintiffs alternatively plead in their second claim for relief that even if the Board was authorized to approve an amendment to the Compact, that authority rested with the full three-member Board and could not be delegated to the Chairman or any individual employee of the Board.

*Holding: not yet available

United States v. Rubio
2007 WL 2316629
No. CR 05-225-C-EJL
United States District Court, D. Idaho, August 7, 2007

Subjects: Searches and seizures; Evidence (Law); Indian Country (Wash.) -- Defined; United States. Constitution. 4th Amendment.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Defense counsel has waited until the reply briefing to advance his argument that the issuing judge was without jurisdiction to issue a search warrant on tribal land. This argument is based solely upon the fact that the Culdesac home is located in Indian Country.

*Holding: not yet available

July

St. Pierre v. Norton
498 F.Supp.2d 214
>Civil Action No. 03-1057 GK
United States District Court, District of Columbia, July 31, 2007

Subjects: Disputed elections -- Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community of Minnesota; Constitutions -- Federal supervision; United States. Bureau of Indian Affairs; Constitutions -- Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community of Minnesota; Tribal membership -- Law and legislation -- Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community of Minnesota; Revenue sharing -- Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community of Minnesota; Profit sharing -- Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community of Minnesota; Indian gaming -- Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community of Minnesota; United States. Administrative Procedure Act.

*Synopsis: Plaintiffs, individual members of Indian tribe, brought action under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), alleging that decisions of the Department of the Interior (DOI) and Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) with respect to tribe's membership policies allowed unqualified members to gain control of the tribe and its gaming revenues. DOI moved for judgment on the pleadings.

*Holding: The District Court, Kessler, J., held that:
(1) tribe was a necessary party but joinder was not feasible, and
(2) doctrine of issue preclusion required dismissal of claim that DOI failed to comply with remand order in prior litigation.
Motion granted.

Paiute-Shoshone Indians of the Bishop Community of the Bishop Colony v. City of Los Angeles
2007 WL 2202242
No. 1:06-cv-0736 OWW SMS
United States District Court, E.D. California, July 30, 2007

Subjects: Land tenure -- Paiute-Shoshone Indians of the Bishop Community of the Bishop Colony, California; Land tenure -- California -- Los Angeles; Land transfers -- California.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The Paiute-Shoshone Indians of the Bishop Community of the Bishop Colony, California, a federally recognized Indian tribe (“Plaintiff”) filed this ejectment action against the City of Los Angeles (“Defendant” or “the City”), claiming the right to occupy lands previously held in trust for the Tribe by the United States which were transferred to the City in 1941 by agents of the United States government. (Doc. 1, Complaint, filed June 12, 2006.) Among other things, Plaintiffs allege that omissions and other failures by agents of the United States caused the 1941 land transfer to fail to satisfy the requirements of a federal statute governing alienation of the land. The complaint names only the City as a Defendant, excluding the United States from the lawsuit.

*Holding: not yet available

Garreaux v. United States
77 Fed.Cl. 726
No. 06-502 C
United States Court of Federal Claims, July 27, 2007

Subjects: Cheyenne River Housing Authority; Federal aid to housing; Building leases; Fort Laramie, Treaty of, 1851; Mutual Help and Occupancy Agreement.

*Synopsis: Indian tenant brought suit against the United States seeking damages for breach of lease agreement which she entered into with a local housing authority and which was supervised by the federal government, and for negligence in administering the lease agreement. Defendant moved to dismiss.

*Holding: The United States Court of Federal Claims, Damich, Chief Judge, held that:
(1) fact that the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) administered the Mutual Help Homeownership Opportunity Program (MHHOP) and supervised local housing authority did not establish privity of contract between the government and tenant who entered into mutual help and occupancy agreement (MHOA) with housing authority under auspices of the MHHOP program, and
(2) plaintiff's breach of contract and negligence claims did not fall within purview of the "bad men" provision of the Fort Laramie Treaty of April 29, 1868, between the United States and the Great Sioux Nation, so as to create jurisdiction in the Court of Federal Claims.
Motion granted.

Saguaro Chevrolet, Inc. v. United States
77 Fed.Cl. 572
No. 06-714
United States Court of Federal Claims, July 25, 2007

Subjects: Leases -- Colorado River Indian Tribes of the Colorado River Indian Reservation, Arizona and California; Jurisdiction -- United States; Saguaro Chevrolet, Inc.

*Synopsis: Tenant which leased property from the Colorado River Indian Tribes for a car dealership and service facility brought suit against the United States seeking damages for breach of the lease which had been approved by the Secretary of the Interior. Defendant filed motion to dismiss.

*Holding: The United States Court of Federal Claims, Hewitt, J., held that:
(1) fact that Secretary of the Interior approved the lease of land, and that the land was in was in trust and restricted status, did not establish privity of contract between the United States and tenant, and
(2) standard paragraph of lease which provided that "all of the lessee's obligations are to the United States as well as the owner of the land" was not a "dual landlord provision" which established privity between tenant and the United States.
Motion granted.

Fowler v. Crawford
2007 WL 2137803
No. 05-4212-CV-C-NKL
United States District Court, W.D. Missouri, Central Division, July 23, 2007

Subjects: Freedom of religion; Indians of North America -- Rites and ceremonies; Sweat lodges; United States. Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act of 2000; Missouri. Dept. of Corrections; Jefferson City Correctional Center (Mo.).

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) In support of his claims seeking summary judgment and injunctive and declaratory relief under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, plaintiff states defendants have denied him the use and construction of a sweat lodge, in violation of RLUIPA. Plaintiff states use of a sweat lodge is a central tenet of his Native American religion, and that defendants' denial is based upon exaggerated security concerns.

*Holding: not yet available

Apache Tribe of Oklahoma v. United States
2007 WL 2071874
No. CIV-04-1184-R
United States District Court, W.D. Oklahoma, July 18, 2007

Subjects: Apache Tribe of Oklahoma; Intergovernmental agreements -- Oklahoma; Intergovernmental agreements -- Chickasaw Nation, Oklahoma; Gambling on Indian reservations -- Oklahoma -- Marlow; Indian gaming -- Class III -- Chickasaw Nation, Oklahoma; Former tribal lands -- Chickasaw Nation, Oklahoma -- Marlow -- Defined.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) This action arises under the federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA), 25 U.S.C. §§ 2701-2721. On March 24, 2004, pursuant to the statutory authority set forth in 25 U.S.C. § 2710(d)(8)(A) and delegated authority, the Assistant Secretary of the Department of the Interior approved a class III off-track wagering gaming compact submitted by the Chickasaw Tribe of Oklahoma. The Plaintiff in this action, the Apache Tribe of Oklahoma, is challenging the approval of the compact and the determination made during that process that the land described in the Compact in Marlow, Oklahoma is “located within that area of land constituting the former reservation land of the Chickasaw Nation in Oklahoma.”

*Holding: not yet available

Smith v. United States
496 F.Supp.2d 1035
No. 4:06-cv-019
United States District Court, D. North Dakota, Northwestern Division, July 17, 2007

Subjects: Police -- United States. Bureau of Indian Affairs; Law enforcement -- United States -- On Indian reservations; Abandonment of automobiles -- Law and legislation -- Three Affiliated Tribes of the Fort Berthold Reservation, North Dakota; United States. Federal Tort Claims Act.

*Synopsis: Guardian ad litem brought suit against government on behalf of minor who was burned on Indian reservation while playing with lighted matches and gasoline, alleging negligence and breach of fiduciary duty by Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) in failing to enforce tribal ordinances concerning nearby abandoned vehicles, from which gasoline was allegedly obtained. Government moved to dismiss.

*Holding: The District Court, Hovland, Chief Judge, held that officers' alleged conduct in failing to enforce tribal ordinances regarding abandoned vehicles was shielded from tort liability under discretionary function exception to Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA).
Motion granted.

Fort Hall Landowners Alliance, Inc. v. Bureau of Indian Affairs
2007 WL 2187256
No. CV-99-52-E-BLW
United States District Court, D. Idaho, July 16, 2007

Subjects: Privacy -- United States; Disclosure of information -- United States; United States. Bureau of Indian Affairs; Indian allottees -- Shoshone-Bannock Tribes of the Fort Hall Reservation of Idaho; Breach of trust -- United States; Trusts and trustees -- United States; United States. Privacy Act of 1974; Fort Hall Landowners Alliance.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The Tribes seek a ruling under Rule of Evidence 406, based on defendants' routine business practice, that defendants disclosed personal information of Tribal members to every prospective lessee seeking to negotiate a lease of individually allotted agricultural land on Fort Hall from “early 1997 through February, 1999.” As the Tribes recognize, the Court rejected their earlier attempt to establish this routine practice from 1993 to 1999.

*Holding: not yet available

Quechan Indian Tribe of Fort Yuma Indian Reservation v. U.S. Department of Interior
2007 WL 2023487
No. CV07-0677-PHX-JAT
United States District Court, D. Arizona, July 12, 2007

Subjects: Quechan Tribe of the Fort Yuma Indian Reservation, California & Arizona; United States. National Environmental Policy Act of 1969; United States. National Historic Preservation Act of 1966 ; Memorandums -- Wellton-Mohawk Irrigation and Drainage District; Gila Project (U.S.); Memorandums -- United States. Bureau of Reclamation; Land titles -- Registration and transfer; Environmental impact statements; Environmental impact analysis; United States. Administrative Procedure Act.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) On March 30, 2007, the Quechan Indian Tribe of the Fort Yuma Indian Reservation (“Plaintiff”) filed a Complaint for Injunctive Relief against numerous federal Defendants and non-federal Defendants. In the Complaint, Plaintiff alleges that BOR violated the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, 42 U.S.C. § 4332, et seq. (“NEPA”) and the National Historic Preservation Act, 16 U.S.C. § 470, et seq. (“NHPA”) by failing to properly analyze the potential environmental and cultural resources impact resulting from the transfer of the federal land to the District. Plaintiff also alleges that BOR violated the Wellton-Mohawk Transfer Act of 2000 by transferring federal land for purposes of developing an oil refinery.

*Holding: not yet available

Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe v. Kempthorne
496 F.Supp.2d 1059
No. CIV 06-3015
United States District Court, D. South Dakota, Central Division, July 10, 2007

Subjects: United States. Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act. Title 1; Education -- Finance -- Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe of the Cheyenne River Reservation, South Dakota; Schools -- Finance -- Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe of the Cheyenne River Reservation, South Dakota; Public contracts – United States; Tribal schools -- Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe of the Cheyenne River Reservation, South Dakota.

*Synopsis: Indian tribe brought action against Secretary of the interior under Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act (ISDEAA), challenging declination of tribe's proposed amendments to contract for provision of educational services at schools operated by Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA). Tribe and Secretary filed cross-motions for summary judgment.

*Holding: The District Court, Kornmann, J., held that letter declining tribe's proposed amendments failed to comply with ISDEAA, in that it failed, inter alia, to provide detailed explanation for decision.
Tribe's motion granted; Secretary's motion denied.

Yankton Sioux Tribe v. United States Dept. of Health & Human Servs.
496 F.Supp.2d 1044
No. 06-4180
United States District Court, D. South Dakota, Southern Division, July 9, 2007

Subjects: Yankton Sioux Tribe of South Dakota; United States. Indian Health Service; Hospitals--Emergency services -- United States; Due process of law.

*Synopsis: Indian tribe and individual member of tribe sued United States Indian Health Service (IHS), seeking writ of mandamus, injunction, and declaratory judgment, to prevent closure of IHS emergency room, and asserting that IHS violated due process, federal trust responsibility, and federal statutes. IHS moved to dismiss case with prejudice.

*Holding: The District Court, Piersol, J., held that:
(1) prior decisions granting and dissolving injunction were both final decisions rendered on merits;
(2) parties were same as in prior suit or in privity to each other by virtual representation;
(3) due process claim was barred by res judicata;
(4) claim of alleged failure to follow impact report requirements was barred by res judicata;
(5) claim of alleged failure to consult with tribe was barred by res judicata;
(6) claim of alleged failure to update impact report annually was barred by res judicata; and
(7) general allegation that closing emergency room violates the federal trust relationship does not in and of itself state a separate cause of action.
Motion granted.

June

Chao v. Matheson
2007 WL 1830738
No. C06-5361RBL
United States District Court, W.D. Washington, at Tacoma, June 25, 2007

Subjects: United States. Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 -- Application -- Tribes -- Members; Treaty of Medicine Creek (1854); Indian business enterprises -- On Indian reservations.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) There is but one issue remaining in the case: whether the Fair Labor Standards Act, 29 U.S.C. § 201 et seq., applies to the Defendants, who are members of a Native American tribe doing business on tribal land. Plaintiff asserts that the FLSA applies notwithstanding the defendants' status as registered tribal members and the fact their business is on tribal land. Defendants argue that the FLSA does not and cannot apply to them because that Act would conflict with the Treaty of Medicine Creek, and that the Supreme Court has held that the United States Government does not interfere with “purely intramural tribal matters.”

*Holding: not yet available

Nulankeyutmonen Nkihtaqmikon v. Bureau of Indian Affairs
493 F.Supp.2d 91
No. CV-05-188-B-W
United States District Court, D. Maine, June 25, 2007

Subjects: United States. Freedom of Information Act; Nulankeyutmonen Nkihtaqmikon; Factions -- Passamaquoddy Tribe of Maine; Liquefied natural gas -- Passamaquoddy Tribe of Maine; Building leases -- Passamaquoddy Tribe of Maine; Quoddy Bay (Me.); United States. Bureau of Indian Affairs; United States. Dept. of the Interior; Standing to sue.

*Synopsis: Private citizens who were members of Indian tribe brought action under Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) against Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), alleging that BIA improperly withheld documents relating to its approval of a lease to operate a liquified natural gas terminal on tribal lands. The District Court, 453 F.Supp.2d 193, granted summary judgment in favor of BIA but stayed decision to allow requesters to decide whether issues raised by their receipt, after the motion was filed, of a response to their FOIA request warranted amendment of complaint. Following filing of amended complaint, the District Court, 450 F.Supp.2d 113, granted summary judgment, as moot, in favor of BIA on first count. Thereafter parties cross-moved for summary judgment.

*Holding: The District Court, Woodcock, Jr., J., held that:
(1) documents were properly withheld under exemption for deliberative inter- or intra-agency communications;
(2) personal e-mail addresses contained in one document were properly redacted under exemption for information the disclosure of which would constitute an invasion of personal privacy;
(3) BIA's search was reasonable and adequate even though there were numerous delays in disclosing responsive documents; and
(4) BIA's failure to find certain documents during its first searches did not establish that it engaged in an impermissible pattern or practice of delayed disclosure.
BIA's motion granted and requesters' motion denied.

Oneida Tribe of Indians of Wisconsin v. Village of Hobart
500 F.Supp.2d 1143
No. 06-C-1302
United States District Court, E.D. Wisconsin, June 22, 2007

Subjects: Taxation -- Law and legislation -- Wisconsin -- Application -- Oneida Tribe of Indians of Wisconsin; Taxation -- Village of Hobart (Wis.); Villages -- On or near Indian reservations -- Oneida Tribe of Indians of Wisconsin.

*Synopsis: Native American tribe brought action against village for declaratory and injunctive relief, seeking determination that certain property it purchased within the original boundaries of its reservation was not subject to state laws that authorized the village to impose taxes and special assessments on property within its boundaries. Tribe sought injunctive relief in the form of an order directing village to refund the more than $1.3 million in assessments paid. Village counterclaimed, seeking a declaration that the property acquired by the tribe was subject to village's power to, inter alia, tax and assess. In addition, village sought an injunction directing tribe to pay all unpaid taxes and assessments. Tribe moved to dismiss village's counterclaim.

*Holding: The District Court, Griesbach, J., held that:
(1) counterclaim seeking injunctive relief did not constitute claim for recoupment and was thus barred by sovereign immunity,
(2) but tribe waived immunity from counterclaim seeking declaratory relief.

Blue Legs v. United States Bureau of Indian Affairs
2007 WL 1815994
No. CIV. 06-5001-RHB
United States District Court, D. South Dakota, Western Division, June 21, 2007

Subjects: Waste disposal sites -- Rosebud Sioux Tribe of the Rosebud Indian Reservation, South Dakota; United States. Resource Conservation and Recovery Act of 1976.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) This litigation commenced in 1985 when plaintiffs brought suit against defendants alleging that the garbage dumps located on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation were maintained in violation of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). After lengthy litigation, this Court ordered defendants to bring the sites into compliance.

*Holding: not yet available

Southern Ute Indian Tribe v. Leavitt
497 F.Supp.2d 1245
Civil No. 05-988 WJ/LAM
United States District Court, D. New Mexico, June 15, 2007

Subjects: United States. Dept. of Health and Human Services; United States. Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act; Contracts -- Southern Ute Indian Tribe of the Southern Ute Reservation, Colorado; Medical care --Southern Ute Indian Tribe of the Southern Ute Reservation, Colorado.

*Synopsis: After Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) declined to enter into contract allowing Indian tribe to assume control over and management of the programs, functions, services, and activities of reservation health center, tribe brought action under Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act (ISDEA), seeking damages and injunctive relief. Tribe moved for preliminary injunction and Government moved for summary judgment.

*Holding: Construing tribe's motion for preliminary injunction as a cross-motion for summary judgment, the District Court, Johnson, J., held that:
(1) Government did not have discretion to decline to enter into contract allowing tribe to assume control its health care, and
(2) contract did not violate the Appropriations Clause of the Constitution or the Anti-Deficiency Act.
Ordered accordingly.

All Mission Indian Housing Authority v. Magante
2007 WL 1975909
No. 06cv1678 BTM (NLS)
United States District Court, S.D. California, June 12, 2007

Subjects: United States. Native American Housing Assistance and Self-Determination Act of 1996; All Mission Indian Housing Authority; Eviction; Housing authorities -- Tribes; Landlord and tenant.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Plaintiff further argues that the federal common law governing landlord-tenant relations for Indian reservations should be developed from the statutory skeleton put in place by the 1996 passage of the Native American Housing Assistance and Self-Determination Act (“NAHASDA”). Plaintiff claims that NAHASDA provides the essential features of the uniform national law that Congress wishes to be applied in all federally-funded Indian housing matters.

*Holding: not yet available

Native American Distributing v. Seneca-Cayuga Tobacco Company
491 F.Supp.2d 1056
No. 05-CV-427-TCK-SAJ
United States District Court, N.D. Oklahoma, June 5, 2007

Subjects: Seneca-Cayuga Tobacco Company; Tribal business enterprises -- Seneca-Cayuga Tribe of Oklahoma; Native American Distributing (Mo.); Contracts; Jurisdiction -- United States; Sovereign immunity -- Seneca-Cayuga Tribe of Oklahoma.

*Synopsis: Tobacco distribution corporation brought action against tobacco company, a tribal enterprise, and individuals, alleging breach of contract and civil conspiracy. Individual defendants and tobacco company filed separate motions to dismiss.

*Holding: The District Court, Terence Kern, J., held that:
(1) tobacco company was an enterprise of tribe as a governmental entity, and
(2) tribe's sovereign immunity extended to alleged wrongful actions of individual defendants.
Motions granted.

Gerlach v. Brown
2007 WL 1659060
Civil Action Nos. 99-4699 (SRC), 04-3493(SRC)
United States District Court, D. New Jersey, June 5, 2007

Subjects: Indian prisoners -- New Jersey; Freedom of religion -- United States; Religious articles; United States. Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act of 2000.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) This case arises out of disputes over the practice of Native American religion by certain inmates in confinement administered by the New Jersey Department of Corrections. The inmate Plaintiffs and the Defendant New Jersey Department of Corrections have agreed on all but two provisions in two sets of guidelines governing inmates' practice of Native American religion: 1) the draft “Level I Internal Management Procedure Title: Guidelines for Religious Practice: Native American;” and 2) the “Level I Internal Management Procedure Title: Guidelines for Religious Practice: Native American Sweat Lodge Ceremonies” (collectively, the “IMPs”). The first provision presently at issue restricts the colors of certain Native American religious articles, permitting them only to be white, while the second provision allows guards to search inmates' religious articles outside the presence of the Supervisor of Chaplaincy Services or the Chaplain during a routine cell search, if the inmate gives permission. The parties have asked this Court to rule on the validity of these two provisions under the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (“RLUIPA”), 42 U.S.C. § 2000cc-1.

*Holding: not yet available

Central New York Fair Business Association v. Kempthorne
2007 WL 1593727
No. 6:06-CV-1501
United States District Court, N.D. New York, June 1, 2007

Subjects: Land into trust -- New York (State); United States. Bureau of Indian Affairs; Federal question; United States. Administrative Procedure Act; United States. Declaratory Judgment Act; Central New York Fair Business Association.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Plaintiffs filed this action seeking declaratory and injunctive relief related to the Bureau of Indian Affairs (“BIA”) handling of land-into-trust applications filed by several Indian tribes in New York State, as detailed below. They assert that federal question jurisdiction exists under 28 U.S.C. § 1331, pursuant to the Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. §§ 500, 596, and the Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. §§ 2201-2202. Plaintiffs further assert that the United States has waived its sovereign immunity from suit under 5 U.S.C. § 702 and 28 U.S.C. § 2209(a).

*Holding: not yet available

May

Schugg v. Gila River Indian Community
2007 WL 1526741
No. CV 05-2045-PHX-JAT
United States District Court, D. Arizona, May 24, 2007

Subjects: Vendors and purchasers; Bankruptcy; Jurisdiction -- United States; Extinguishment of Indian title -- Gila River Indian Community of the Gila River Indian Reservation, Arizona; Parties to actions -- United States; Trusts and trustees -- United States; Quiet title actions -- United States.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The Trustee argues that GRIC's aboriginal title was extinguished when, in 1877, the federal government conveyed Section 16 as school land to the Territory of Arizona.

*Holding: not yet available

Pueblo of Zuni v. United States
243 F.R.D. 436
Civil No. 01-1046 WJ/WPL
United States District Court, D. New Mexico, May 22, 2007

Subjects: Overhead costs; United States. Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act; Contracts -- Zuni Tribe of the Zuni Reservation, New Mexico; Medical care -- Costs -- Zuni Tribe of the Zuni Reservation, New Mexico; Breach of contract -- United States; Self-determination -- Zuni Tribe of the Zuni Reservation, New Mexico; United States. Indian Health Service.

*Synopsis: Indian tribe brought putative class action seeking damages for government's alleged failure to pay the full contract amounts under contracts between Indian tribes and the Indian Health Service (IHS) that were awarded under the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act (ISDEAA). Following dismissal, 467 F.Supp.2d 1099, of certain claims, tribe moved for, inter alia, class certification.

*Holding: The District Court, Johnson, J., held that:
(1) existence of unexhausted claims was a jurisdictional defect;
(2) proposed class definition was overbroad;
(3) numerosity requirement for class certification was satisfied;
(4) commonality requirement was not satisfied; and
(5) lead plaintiff did not adequately represent the interests of other tribes in the potential class.
Motion denied.

Oneida Indian Nation of New York v. New York
500 F.Supp.2d 128
No. 574-CV-187 LEK/DRH
United States District Court, N.D. New York, May 21, 2007

Subjects: Indian land transfers -- Oneida Nation of New York; Indian land transfers -- Oneida Tribe Oneida Tribe of Indians of Wisconsin; Indian land transfers -- Oneida of the Thames First Nation (Canada); Indian land transfers -- New York (State).

*Synopsis: Three groups of the Oneida Indian Nation brought action against the State of New York and two counties, seeking redress for allegedly unlawful transfers of approximately 250,000 acres of ancestral land in central New York. The United States intervened as plaintiff. The District Court, Kahn, J., 194 F.Supp. 2d 104, struck defendants' laches defense. Defendants filed motion for summary judgment and reconsideration of laches defense.

*Holding: The District Court, Kahn, J., held that:
(1) tribal groups' possessory land claim was barred by laches;
(2) tribal groups' allegations that state obtained seven times amount paid for land when it resold land were sufficient to allege non-possessory claims against State;
(3) non-possessory land claims brought by groups would be treated as contract claim; and
(4) genuine issue of material fact regarding adequacy of compensation for land precluded summary judgment.

Quair v. Sisco
2007 WL 1490571
No. 1:02-CV-5891 DFL
United States District Court, E.D. California, May 21, 2007

Subjects: United States. Indian Civil Rights Act; Exile (Punishment) -- Santa Rosa Indian Community of the Santa Rosa Rancheria, California; Santa Rosa Indian Community of the Santa Rosa Rancheria, California -- Members; Santa Rosa Indian Community of the Santa Rosa Rancheria, California -- Membership; Sovereignty -- Santa Rosa Indian Community of the Santa Rosa Rancheria, California.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) This case arises from the decisions by the General Council of the Santa Rosa Rancheria Tachi Indian Tribe (“the Tribe”) to banish and disenroll petitioners Roselind Quair and Charlotte Berna (“petitioners”). Petitioners contend that the banishment and disenrollment decisions violate the Indian Civil Rights Act (“ICRA”) because petitioners were denied various procedural protections available in federal and state courts. The Tribal Business Committee members of the Santa Rosa Rancheria Tachi Indian Tribe (“respondents”) take the position that ICRA does not override tribal sovereignty, which includes the right of the Tribe to follow its own traditional adjudicatory procedures in banishment and disenrollment proceedings.

*Holding: not yet available

United States v. Papakee
485 F.Supp.2d 1032
No. 06-CR-162-LRR
United States District Court, N.D. Iowa, May 2, 2007

Subjects: Criminal jurisdiction -- United States; Indian Country (U.S.) -- Defined; United States. Major Crimes Act; Sex crimes -- On Indian reservations -- Meskwaki Settlement (Iowa).

*Synopsis: Defendants, residents of the Meskwaki Settlement in Tama County, Iowa, were charged with sexual abuse in Indian country and aggravated sexual abuse in Indian country. Parties were directed to brief whether court had criminal jurisdiction over defendants.

*Holding: The District Court, Linda R. Reade, Chief Judge, held that:
(1) Settlement was "reservation" and thus was "Indian country" for purposes of Indian Major Crimes Act, and
(2) portion of Settlement that was outside boundaries of original reservation "Indian Country" for purposes of Act.
Order accordingly.

Van Kruiningen v. Plan B, LLC
485 F.Supp.2d 92
No. 3:05cv1528 (JBA)
United States District Court, D. Connecticut, May 1, 2007

Subjects: Employees -- Dismissal of -- Mohegan Sun Casino (Conn.); Alcohol -- Law and legislation -- Connecticut -- Application -- Mohegan Indian Tribe of Connecticut; United States. Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title 7; Crime -- Reporting.

*Synopsis: Employees terminated by owner of casino club sued owner for, inter alia, wrongful discharge in violation of Connecticut public policy. Owner moved for judgment on the pleadings as to such claim.

*Holding: The District Court, Janet Bond Arterton, J., held that:
(1) no other statutory remedies were available that would preclude employees' claim;
(2) Connecticut's public policy against serving alcohol to minors applied even though club operated on Indian reservation;
(3) Connecticut had public policy against serving alcohol to minors;
(4) even if general manager of casino club, rather than club's owner, was responsible for alleged serving of alcoholic beverages to minor, such fact would not preclude finding of nexus between owner's actions and public policy; and
(5) allegations of employees' complaint sufficiently alleged intentional violation of public policy.
Motion denied.

April

Michigan v. Little River Band of Ottawa Indians
2007 WL 1238907
No. 5:05-cv-95
United States District Court, W.D. Michigan, Southern Division, April 27, 2007

Subjects: Breach of contract; Intergovernmental agreements -- Michigan; Intergovernmental agreements -- Tribes -- Michigan; Intergovernmental agreements -- Gaming; Little River Band of Ottawa Indians, Michigan; Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians, Michigan; Michigan Economic Development Corporation; Michigan; United States. Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) In this action filed under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (“IGRA”), 25 U.S.C. § 2701 et seq., the State of Michigan and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (collectively the “State”) allege that the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians and the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians (collectively the “Tribes” unless otherwise indicated) have breached Tribal-State gaming compacts by failing to make payments required by those agreements. Each of the agreements contains an “exclusivity” provision, under which the Tribes agreed to make payments to the State so long as certain conditions are satisfied.

*Holding: not yet available

Mashantucket Pequot Tribe v. Town of Ledyard
2007 WL 1238338
No. 3:06cv1212 (WWE)
United States District Court, D. Connecticut, April 25, 2007

Subjects: Industrial equipment leases -- Mashantucket Pequot Tribe of Connecticut -- Taxation -- Ledyard (Conn. : Town); Indian gaming -- Mashantucket Pequot Tribe of Connecticut; Slot machines -- Taxation -- Ledyard (Conn. : Town).

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The Tribe now seeks declaratory judgments that (1) the Town is without authority to include the leased gaming equipment in the Town's list of taxable property; (2) the Town is without authority “to assess, impose, or collect personal property taxes” on such machines and equipment; and (3) the “imposition and/or collection of” taxes on such machines and equipment “is void and illegal.” The Tribe also seeks an injunction prohibiting the Town from including the leased equipment on its grand list and from collecting personal property taxes on such equipment.

*Holding: not yet available

Ute Indian Tribe of the Uintah and Ouray Reservation v. Ute Distribution Corporation
2007 WL 1231499
No. 2:06CV557DAK
United States District Court, D. Utah, Central Division, April 23, 2007

Subjects: Stockholders -- Ute Indian Tribe of the Uintah & Ouray Reservation, Utah; Articles of incorporation -- Ute Distribution Corporation; Sovereign immunity -- Ute Indian Tribe of the Uintah & Ouray Reservation, Utah.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The Tribe is the largest shareholder of the UDC. It brought this action when the Ute Distribution Corporation Board of Directors proposed amendments to the UDC Articles of Incorporation that would allegedly have the effect of limiting the Tribe's, or any member of the Tribe's, participation in the UDC. The Complaint alleges that the proposed amendments would prohibit anyone affiliated with the Tribe from serving on the UDC Board of Directors, would allow only members of the Board of Directors to nominate new directors, propose new corporate business, and carry out corporate functions, and would allow removal of a member of the Board of Directors only by a three-fourths majority of the other Board of Directors or by a two-thirds majority of the stockholders for “cause.”

*Holding: not yet available

Citizens Against Casino Gambling in Erie County v. Kempthorne
2007 WL 1200473
No. 06-CV-0001S
United States District Court, W.D. New York, April 20, 2007

Subjects: Indian gaming -- Seneca Nation of New York; Gambling on Indian Reservations -- New York (State); United States. Indian Gaming Regulatory Act; Erie County (N.Y.); Intergovernmental agreements -- Seneca Nation of New York.; Intergovernmental agreements -- New York (State); Quiet title actions; Parties to actions.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Thee Government (“Defendants”) first asks the Court to reconsider its statement that because the Secretary is not charged with the IGRA's administration, the Secretary's interpretation of the IGRA's terms is owed no deference. Defendants second argument is that the Court committed clear error in remanding the NIGC Chairman's decision approving the SNI's Gaming Ordinance. Finally, the Government questions the Court's determination that this action was not subject to dismissal in its entirety for lack of subject matter jurisdiction based on the QTA.

*Holding: not yet available

Progressive Specialty Insurance Company v. Burnette
489 F.Supp.2d 955
Civil No. 06-3013
United States District Court, D. South Dakota, Central Division, April 19, 2007

Subjects: Automobile insurance claims; Traffic accidents -- On Indian reservations -- Rosebud Sioux Tribe of the Rosebud Indian Reservation, South Dakota; Rosebud Sioux Tribe of the Rosebud Indian Reservation, South Dakota - Members; Insurance, Uninsured motorist.

*Synopsis: Automobile insurer brought action seeking declaration that tribal court did not have subject matter jurisdiction over dispute with tribe member. Parties filed cross-motions for summary judgment.

*Holding: The District Court, Kornmann, J., held that tribal court did not have subject matter jurisdiction over dispute.
Insurer's motion granted.

Tejesova v. Bone
2007 WL 1160059
No. 2:06CV22
United States District Court, W.D. North Carolina, April 18, 2007

Subjects: Traffic accidents -- On Indian reservations -- Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina; Jurisdiction -- Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina; Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina -- Members.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The Plaintiff alleged jurisdiction based on diversity of citizenship pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1332. The Defendant moved to dismiss claiming that the Plaintiff must first exhaust her remedies in Tribal Court for the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. The Defendant has filed an affidavit in which he avers that (1) he is a Cherokee Indian who is a member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians; (2) at the time of the accident, the Plaintiff was a resident of the Reservation; (3) the Defendant is a resident of the Reservation; and (4) the accident occurred on the reservation.

*Holding: not yet available

March

Blackmoon v. Charles Mix County
505 F.Supp.2d 585
No. CIV 05-4017
United States District Court, D. South Dakota, Southern Division, March 30, 2007

Subjects: Indians of North America -- South Dakota -- Charles Mix County; Election districts -- Charles Mix County (S.D.); Voting -- Charles Mix County (S.D.); Indians of North America -- Suffrage -- South Dakota; United States. Voting Rights Act of 1965; United States. Constitution. 14th Amendment; United States. Constitution. 15th Amendment. Apportionment (Election law).

*Synopsis: Following finding, 2005 WL 2738954, in favor of Native American voters in their action challenging the apportionment of county commission districts, as to claim under the one-person-one-vote standard of the Equal Protection Clause, they moved for further relief, and defendants moved for summary judgment and to dismiss remaining claims.

*Holding: The District Court, Lawrence L. Piersol, J., held that:
(1) special remedies provided in the Voting Rights Act (VRA) were not available to voters as to claim under the one-person-one-vote standard of the Equal Protection Clause, but
(2) claims arising under the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments and the VRA were not moot, despite fact that the voting districts had been changed.
Motions denied.

San Pasqual Band of Mission Indians v. California
2007 WL 935578
No. 06cv0988-LAB (AJB)
United States District Court, S.D. California, March 20, 2007

Subjects: Indian gaming -- Class III -- San Pasqual Band of Diegueno Mission Indians of California; Intergovernmental agreements -- San Pasqual Band of Diegueno Mission Indians of California; Intergovernmental agreements -- California; Gambling on Indian reservations -- California.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The tribe seeks a judicial determination of the question: what is the correct number of Class III Gaming Device licenses authorized in the aggregate by the State Aggregate Limit formula contained in San Pasqual's Tribal-State Gaming Compact?

*Holding: not yet available

Rosales v. United States
477 F.Supp.2d 213
Civil Action No. 07-162 (RMC)
United States District Court, District of Columbia, March 19, 2007

Subjects: Casinos -- Design and construction -- Jamul Indian Village of California; Burial sites -- Jamul Indian Village of California; United States. Native American Graves and Repatriation Act; Contested elections -- Jamul Indian Village of California; Constitutions -- Jamul Indian Village of California; Indian blood quantum -- Jamul Indian Village of California; United States. Bureau of Indian Affairs; United States. Indian Reorganization Act; United States. Administrative Procedure Act.

*Synopsis: Plaintiffs, members of Native American village, brought action under the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA) against the Department of the Interior (DOI) and others, seeking to stop construction of a hotel/casino on property belonging to the Village. Plaintiffs' motions for a preliminary injunction and a temporary restraining order (TRO) were denied, leaving the court to consider defendants' motion to transfer venue.

*Holding: The District Court, Collyer, J., held that transfer of venue to Southern District of California was appropriate.
Motion granted.

Wisconsin v. Ho-Chunk Nation
478 F.Supp.2d 1093
No. 05-C-632-S
United States District Court, W.D. Wisconsin, March 9, 2007

Subjects: Gambling on Indian reservations -- Wisconsin; Indian gaming -- Ho-Chunk Nation of Wisconsin (formerly known as the Wisconsin Winnebago Tribe; Intergovernmental agreements -- Ho-Chunk Nation of Wisconsin (formerly known as the Wisconsin Winnebago Tribe); Intergovernmental agreements -- Wisconsin; Jurisdiction -- United States; United States. United States Arbitration Act; United States. Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.

*Synopsis: In dispute over Indian tribe's failure to make certain payments to State, following grant, 402 F.Supp. 2d, of motion to compel arbitration, the Court of Appeals, 463 F.3d 655, vacated and remanded. The District Court, 2006 WL 3813654, granted State's motion to amend complaint to seek declaratory and injunctive relief, to allege breach of contract, and to compel performance under the compact terms. Tribe moved to dismiss or for summary judgment.

*Holding: The District Court, John C. Shabaz, J., held that:
(1) District Court had subject matter jurisdiction over State's action seeking to enjoin class III gaming activity on tribe's lands;
(2) tribe was in breach of contract for failing to make required payments; but
(3) tribe was not in breach of contract on basis of any refusal to negotiate or arbitrate; and
(4) Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) was applicable for purposes of State's claims to compel arbitration.
Motions denied in part and granted in part.

Rosales v. United States
477 F.Supp.2d 119
Civil Action No. 03-1117 (GK)
United States District Court, District of Columbia, March 8, 2007

Subjects: Contested elections -- Jamul Indian Village of California; Constitutions -- Jamul Indian Village of California; Indian blood quantum -- Jamul Indian Village of California; United States. Bureau of Indian Affairs; United States. Indian Reorganization Act; United States. Administrative Procedure Act.

*Synopsis: Members of Native American village brought action, under the Indian Reorganization Act (IRA) and the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), against, inter alia, the Interior Board of Indian Appeals (IBIA), contesting the validity of an amendment to the Village Constitution which lowered the blood-quantum requirement for tribal membership and voter registration. Parties cross-moved for summary judgment.

*Holding: The District Court, Kessler, J., held that:
(1) determination of the IBIA which upheld decision not to postpone tribal election was not arbitrary, capricious, contrary to law, or an abuse of discretion;
(2) determination that certain members of Indian Village were barred from contesting the validity of the amendment because they were not qualified voters, did not violate any federal statute and was not plainly erroneous or inconsistent with the regulation; and
(3) determination which upheld results of 2001 tribal election was reasonable, and thus challenges to two prior elections were moot.
Plaintiffs' motion denied and defendants' motion granted.

Barnes v. Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation
2007 WL 735704
No. 3:06-CV-693 (RNC)
United States District Court, D. Connecticut, March 5, 2007

Subjects: Mashantucket Pequot Gaming Enterprise -- Employees; Employees, Dismissal of -- Mashantucket Pequot Tribe of Connecticut; Discrimination in employment -- Mashantucket Pequot Tribe of Connecticut; Casinos -- Mashantucket Pequot Tribe of Connecticut; United States. Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990; Sovereign immunity -- Mashantucket Pequot Tribe of Connecticut; Jurisdiction -- United States.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Plaintiff brings this action against his former employer, the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation (“Tribe”), and five of its employees, alleging employment discrimination in violation of 42 U.S .C. §§ 2000e, et seq. (“Title VII”), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12101, et seq. (“ADA”), and 29 U.S.C. §§ 701 et seq. (“Rehabilitation Act”).

*Holding: not yet available

United States of America v. Nastacio
2007 WL 1302617
No. CR 05-2047 JB
United States District Court, D. New Mexico, March 5, 2007

Subjects: Prison sentences -- United States; Zuni Tribe of the Zuni Reservation, New Mexico -- Prisons; Drunk driving -- On Indian reservations -- Zuni Tribe of the Zuni Reservation, New Mexico.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The primary issues are: (i) whether Defendant Billy D. Nastacio spent seventeen days or two months in the Zuni Jail on tribal charges related to this federal offense; (ii) whether the Court should grant Nastacio a downward departure pursuant to U.S.S.G. §§ 5G1.3(b) and 5K2.23, because he served time in the Zuni Jail for charges related to this offense; (iii) whether the Court should grant Nastacio a downward departure under the Guidelines because his case does not fall within the heartland of aggravated assault cases; and (iv) whether the Court should vary from the Guidelines because the guideline imprisonment range is not reasonable.

*Holding: not yet available

February

Susanville Indian Rancheria v. Leavitt
2007 WL 662197
No. 2:07-cv-259-GEB-DAD
United States District Court, E.D. California, February 28, 2007

Subjects: Health facilities -- Susanville Indian Rancheria, California; United States. Indian Health Service; Intergovernmental agreements -- United States; Intergovernmental agreements -- Susanville Indian Rancheria, California; Medical care, Cost of; Drugs -- Costs.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Plaintiff moves for a preliminary injunction under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 65(a) and 25 U.S.C. § 450m-1, in which it seeks to enjoin Defendants “from excluding [Plaintiff]'s pharmacy services component from the programs authorized under [Plaintiff]'s self-governance Compact and Calendar Year 2007 Funding Agreement ... and [a court order] directing Defendants to sign the Compact and CY 2007 Funding Agreement and provide such funding as is authorized under these agreements without imposing any condition that would prevent [Plaintiff] from charging beneficiaries for services.”

*Holding: not yet available

Michigan Gambling Opposition ("MichGO") v. Norton
477 F.Supp.2d 1
Civil Action No. 05-01181 (JGP)
United States District Court, District of Columbia, February 23, 2007

Subjects: Gambling on Indian reservations -- Michigan; Indian gaming -- Class III -- Match-e-be-nash-she-wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians of Michigan; United States. Indian Gaming Regulatory Act; Building sites; United States. National Environmental Policy Act of 1969; Environmental impact statements; Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI); Intergovernmental agreements -- Match-e-be-nash-she-wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians of Michigan; Intergovernmental agreements -- Michigan; Land into trust.

*Synopsis: Michigan non-profit corporation brought action challenging federal defendants' decision to place two parcels of land into trust for Indian band for a proposed casino. The band intervened. The Federal defendants filed motion to dismiss or in the alternative for summary judgment and the band moved for judgment on the pleadings or, in the alternative, for summary judgment.

*Holding: The District Court, John Garrett Penn, J., held that:
(1) land taken into trust by Secretary of the Interior was not Indian band's “initial reservation” within meaning of Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA);
(2) finding of no significant impact (FONSI) relating to proposed casino site's impact on its surrounding communities, traffic, and other indirect effects was not arbitrary, capricious, or an abuse of discretion;
(3) absence of a tribal-state compact required for Class III gaming did not prevent federal defendants from acquiring proposed casino site; and
(4) provision of Indian Reorganization Act (IRA) authorizing Secretary of the Interior to acquire land for Indians did not violate the non-delegation doctrine.
Defendants' and intervenor's motions granted.

United States v. Martinez
505 F.Supp.2d 1024
No. CR 02-1055 JB
United States District Court, D. New Mexico, February 16, 2007

Subjects: United States. Federal Death Penalty Act; Capital punishment -- United States; Capital punishment -- Law and legislation -- United States -- Application -- On Indian reservations; Murder (Trials) -- Pueblo of San Juan, New Mexico -- Members.

*Synopsis: Defendant charged with first-degree murder in Indian country moved to dismiss the indictment.

*Holding: The District Court, Browning, J., in a matter of first impression, held that:
(1) Indian tribe's decision not to opt for application of the federal death penalty for death penalty offenses did not render offense of first-degree murder committed within tribe's jurisdiction “non-capital,” for limitations purposes, and
(2) District Court would not decide whether prior indictment tolled limitations period.
Motion denied.

Ferguson v. SMSC Gaming Enterprise
475 F.Supp.2d 929
No. 06-CV-3743(JMR/FLN)
United States District Court, D. Minnesota, February 15, 2007

Subjects: Casinos -- Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community of Minnesota Prior Lake; Employees, DIsmissal of -- SMSC Gaming Enterprise; Government agencies -- Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community of Minnesota Prior Lake; Sovereign immunity -- SMSC Gaming Enterprise; United States. Civil Rights Act of 1964 – Title 7; African Americans -- Employment; Discrimination in employment -- Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community of Minnesota Prior Lake.

*Synopsis: African-American employee of Indian casino brought Title VII action against entity that operated casino and his supervisor. Defendants moved to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.

*Holding: The District Court, James M. Rosenbaum, J., held that:
(1) entity that operated Indian casino was immune from Title VII action;
(2) tribe's sovereign immunity protected supervisor claims against supervisor in his official capacity; and
(3) Title VII did not allow claims against Indian tribes or against employees in their individual capacity.
Motion granted.

Osage Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma v. United States of America
75 Fed.Cl. 462
No. 99-550 L
United States Court of Federal Claims, February 15, 2007

Subjects: Tribal trust funds -- Osage Tribe of Oklahoma; Fiduciary accountability -- United States; Beneficiaries; Breach of trust -- United States; Trusts and trustees -- Accounting -- United States; Mines and mineral resources -- Osage Tribe of Oklahoma; Revenue -- Osage Tribe of Oklahoma.

*Synopsis: Indian tribe brought suit against the United States alleging that government violated its duty as trustee of tribe's mineral estate by failing to collect all moneys due from tribal oil leases and to deposit and invest those moneys as required by statute and according to fiduciary duty owed to tribe. Government was found liable for breach of fiduciary duties, 72 Fed.Cl. 629, and parties filed joint submission on calculation of damages.

*Holding: The United States Court of Federal Claims, Hewitt, J., held that:
(1) oil royalty rate proposed by tribe would be adopted for purposes of assessing damages for government's breach of fiduciary duty in failing to collect full royalties during period of price controls;
(2) tribe was entitled to interest damages on amounts government failed to collect and on amounts government failed properly to invest in accordance with its fiduciary duties owed to the tribe;
(3) long-term investment rates were the appropriate rates to determine interest damages; and
(4) tribe was not entitled to recover late payment fees from the government under regulation.
So ordered.

Cottier v. City of Martin
475 F.Supp.2d 932
No. CIV 02-5021-KES
United States District Court, D. South Dakota, Western Division, February 9, 2007

Subjects: United States. Voting Rights Act of 1965; Election districts -- Martin (S.D.); Apportionment (Election law); United States. Constitution. 14th Amendment; United States. Constitution. 15th Amendment; American Civil Liberties Union.

*Synopsis: Action was brought on behalf of Native American voters challenging configuration of city wards as violative of § 2 of Voting Rights Act and Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments. City's ordinance, which fragmented Native American voters into three wards, was found to violate § 2 of the Voting Act, at 466 F.Supp.2d 1175.

*Holding: The District Court, Schreier, Chief Judge, held that:
(1) it would impose remediation plan adopting an at-large voting scheme using cumulative voting, rather than division of city into aldermanic wards;
(2) the remediation plan achieved precise population equality, as required under the Fourteenth Amendment's one-person-one-vote requirement;
(3) exceptional circumstances warranted deviating from preference for single-member districts;
(4) the remediation plan did not violate § 2 and nonretrogression standard of § 5 of the Voting Rights Act; and
(5) the remediation plan did not intrude on state policy more than was necessary to uphold the requirements of the Constitution.
Ordered accordingly.

Medina v. Jicarilla Apache Housing Authority
2007 WL 1176023
No. Civ. 06-877 BB/DJS
United States District Court, D. New Mexico, February 2, 2007

Subjects: Indian preference in hiring -- Jicarilla Apache Nation, New Mexico; Employees, Dismissal of -- Jicarilla Apache Housing Authority (N.M.) ; Sovereign immunity -- Jicarilla Apache Nation, New Mexico; United States. Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title 6.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Unless a tribe has clearly waived its immunity or Congress expressly abrogated that immunity by authorizing suit, a suit against an Indian tribe is barred.

*Holding: not yet available

Picayune Rancheria of the Chukchansi Indians v. County of Madera
2007 WL 397412
No. C 06-7613 JF (PVT)
United States District Court, N.D. California, San Jose Division, February 1, 2007

Subjects: Construction -- Licenses -- California -- Madera County; Hotels -- Design and construction -- Picayune Rancheria of Chukchansi Indians of California; Indian gaming -- Picayune Rancheria of Chukchansi Indians of California.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) The Tribe asserts that the County and its officials are interfering with the Tribe's rights as guaranteed by the federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (“IGRA”), 25 U.S.C. § 2701 et seq. The Tribe also asserts that its assertion of its rights to occupy and control its tribal lands is an independent source of federal jurisdiction.

*Holding: not yet available

January

Nord v. Kelly
474 F.Supp.2d 1088
Civil No. 05-1135 (PJS/RLE)
United States District Court, D. Minnesota, January 31, 2007

Subjects: Traffic accidents -- On Indian reservations -- Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians, Minnesota; Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians, Minnesota -- Members; Non-members of a tribe; Personal injuries -- Cases; Jurisdiction -- Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians, Minnesota.

*Synopsis: Non-Native American driver of semi-truck, and his father, whose business owned semi-truck, brought action against member of Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians and Red Lake Nation Tribal Court, seeking declaration that Tribal Court lacked personal jurisdiction over driver and father, who were sued by member in Tribal Court for personal injuries sustained by member in automobile accident that occurred on Red Lake Indian Reservation. Driver and father moved for summary judgment. Tribal Court moved to dismiss for failure to state a claim or, in the alternative, for order continuing summary judgment and permitting discovery.

*Holding: The District Court, Schiltz, J., held that:
(1) truck driver possessed no consensual relationship with the tribe or its members at the time of accident, and thus tribe retained no authority over driver pursuant to Montana exception;
(2) injuries to tribal member did not affect the economic security and the health and welfare of the tribe, for purposes of Montana exception; and
(3) truck driver was not required to exhaust tribal court remedies before seeking a federal injunction.
Motion for summary judgment granted, and motion to dismiss denied.

Native American Arts, Inc. v. Doll Market, Inc.
2007 WL 257640
No. 06 C 0195
United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division, January 25, 2007

Subjects: Native American Arts (Ill.); Doll Market, Inc.; United States. Indian Arts & Crafts Act.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Plaintiff Native American Arts, Inc. has brought this action against Defendant Doll Market, Inc.), alleging that Doll Market falsely represented goods it sold as Indian-made in violation of the Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990, 25 U.S.C. § 305(e) (“IACA”).

*Holding: not yet available

Colebut v. Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation Tribal Elders Council
2007 WL 174384
No. 3:05CV00247 (DJS)
United States District Court, D. Connecticut, January 19, 2007

Subjects: Tribal membership disputes -- Mashantucket Pequot Tribe of Connecticut; Exile (Punishment) -- Mashantucket Pequot Tribe of Connecticut; Habeas corpus.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) On February 8, 2005, Petitioner Neorck Colebut (“Petitioner”) filed with the court a petition challenging his temporary banishment by Respondent Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation Tribal Elders Council (“Respondent”) from the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation (“the Tribe”) and seeking a writ of habeas corpus directing the reinstatement of his former status as a member of the Tribe.

*Holding: not yet available

Tejesova v. Bone
2007 WL 1160058
No. 2:06CV22
United States District Court, W.D. North Carolina, Bryson City Division, January 18, 2007

Subjects: Traffic accidents -- On Indian reservations -- Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina; Jurisdiction -- Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina; Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina -- Members.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) Thus, there is a “colorable question” as to whether the Tribal Court of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians has jurisdiction, and under prevailing case law as well as Supreme Court precedent, this court must afford the Tribal Court the first opportunity to determine its own jurisdiction as a matter of comity. Only after plaintiff has exhausted her tribal remedies may she come back to federal court.

*Holding: not yet available

United States v. State of Washington
2007 WL 171904
No. CV 9213
United States District Court, W.D. Washington, at Seattle, January 18, 2007

Subjects: Fishing rights -- Jamestown S'Klallam Tribe of Washington; Fishing rights -- Skokomish Indian Tribe of the Skokomish Reservation, Washington; Harvest; Hood Canal (Wash.); Hood Canal Agreement (1982).

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) This matter was initiated as a Cross-Request for Determination filed by the Skokomish Indian Tribe (“Skokomish”) in Subproceeding 05-01, asking that the Court “determine and declare an equitable treaty fishing harvest allocation for the available harvest of all species of finfish and shellfish in Hood Canal.” Dkt. # 55. This Cross-Request was bifurcated from Subproceeding 05-01 and opened as a separate Subproceeding. The Port Gamble and Jamestown S'Klallam Tribes (“S'Klallam”) then moved to dismiss on the basis of lack of subject matter jurisdiction, res judicata and standing. The Court found reason to dismiss on both jurisdictional and res judicata grounds, and did not reach the standing argument.

*Holding: not yet available

Citizens Against Casino Gambling in Erie County v. Kempthorne
471 F.Supp.2d 295
No. 06-CV-0001S
United States District Court, W.D. New York, January 12, 2007

Subjects: Indian gaming -- Seneca Nation of New York.; Gambling on Indian Reservations -- New York (State); United States. Indian Gaming Regulatory Act; Erie County (N.Y.); Intergovernmental agreements -- Seneca Nation of New York.; Intergovernmental agreements -- New York (State); Quiet title actions; Parties to actions.

*Synopsis: Casino opponents brought action for declaratory and injunctive relief against the Department of the Interior, the National Indian Gaming Commission (NIGC), and officials of both agencies, claiming defendants violated the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) in approving tribal gaming ordinance and in declining to disapprove tribal-state compact, thereby permitting Indian tribe to construct a gambling casino on land it purchased in city with funds appropriated pursuant to the Seneca Nation Settlement Act (SNSA). Defendants moved to dismiss the complaint for lack of subject matter jurisdiction and failure to state a claim. Casino opponents filed joint motion for summary judgment. Indian tribe filed motion for leave to file an amicus brief seeking dismissal of the complaint.

*Holding: The District Court, William M. Skretny, J., held that:
(1) tribe's participation as an amicus curiae was appropriate;
(2) neither the tribe nor the State was a necessary party to the action;
(3) action did not fall within the Quiet Title Act's (QTA's) reservation of federal government's sovereign immunity;
(4) NIGC chairman's approval of the gaming ordinance, without making determination as to whether land designated for construction of the casino was gaming-eligible Indian land, was not the result of reasoned decision-making; and
(5) Secretary of the Interior's letter opinion was not a final agency action subject to review.
Ordered accordingly.

In re Harper
2007 WL 45918
Nos. 06-076, 05-13352-R, 05-01151-R
United States Bankruptcy Appellate Panel of the Tenth Circuit, January 9, 2007

Subjects: Automobiles -- Registration and transfer -- Muscogee (Creek) Nation; Muscogee (Creek) Nation Tax Commission; Liens -- Oklahoma; Muscogee (Creek) Nation, Oklahoma -- Members; Automobiles -- Registration and transfer -- Law and legislation -- Oklahoma; Debtor and creditor -- Oklahoma.

*Synopsis: Chapter 7 trustee brought adversary proceeding to avoid credit union's lien against debtors' vehicle. The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Oklahoma entered judgment in trustee's favor and denied credit union's motion for new trial. Credit union appealed.

*Holding: The Bankruptcy Appellate Panel, McNiff, J., held that:
(1) credit union did not have perfected security interest in vehicle;
(2) state statute deeming valid security interest in vehicle registered by federally recognized Indian tribe under certain circumstances did not apply to credit union's lien;
(3) credit union did not have purchase-money security interest in debtors' vehicle; and
(4) credit union was not entitled to equitable subrogation.
Affirmed.

United States v. Taylor
2007 WL 87746
Criminal No. 2:99CR13
United States District Court, W.D. North Carolina, Bryson City Division, January 9, 2007

Subjects: Restitution -- Members -- Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina; Profit-sharing -- Members -- Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina; Attachment and garnishment -- North Carolina -- Members -- Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina; Casinos -- Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina; Assault and battery; Jurisdiction -- Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of North Carolina.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) On March 11, 2005, the undersigned issued a writ of continuing garnishment which provided notice to the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and the Defendant that the Government sought to garnish his per capita distribution of gaming proceeds in order to pay restitution. Writ of Continuing Garnishment, filed March 11, 2005 . The United States served the writ on May 13, 2005. Fourteen days later, the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians filed an answer to the writ in which it asserted the sovereign power of the Tribe as a defense to the garnishment.

*Holding: not yet available

Ponca Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma v. Continental Carbon Company
2007 WL 54835
No. CIV-05-445-C
United States District Court, W.D. Oklahoma, January 8, 2007

Subjects: Ponca Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma; Class actions (Civil procedure) -- Ponca Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma; Air pollution -- Ponca Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma; Continental Carbon Co. (Tex.); China Synthetic Rubber Corp.; Jurisdiction -- United States.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) CCC argues that the Court lacks authority to interpret or enforce a tribal law or custom and therefore to the extent Plaintiffs assert such claims in the First Amended Complaint, those claims should be dismissed as they fail to state a claim. In response, Plaintiffs argue that CCC reads the Court's earlier comments regarding the tribal resolution too broadly. The Court agrees with Plaintiffs' recognition that the earlier Order addressed the sole question of whether or not a tribal resolution could provide a basis for subject matter jurisdiction.

*Holding: not yet available

Rosebud Sioux Tribe v. United States
75 Fed.Cl. 15
No. 05-1023 L
United States Court of Federal Claims, January 5, 2007

Subjects: Fiduciary accountability -- United States; Breach of trust -- United States; Trusts and trustees -- United States; Leases -- Rosebud Sioux Tribe of the Rosebud Indian Reservation, South Dakota; Limitation of actions.

*Synopsis: Indian tribe brought suit against the United States alleging that the Secretary of Interior breached fiduciary duties owed to the tribe in the handling of various lawsuits which arose out of government-approved lease of tribal lands for the construction and operation of pork production facilities. Defendant moved for judgment on the pleadings.

*Holding: The Court of Federal Claims, Merow, Senior Judge, held that:
(1) factual issues regarding accrual precluded summary dismissal on statute of limitation grounds;
(2) suit was not an impermissible collateral attack on consent judgment which settled lessee's breach of lease claims; and
(3) tribe stated a viable cause of action for breach of fiduciary duty.
Motion granted in part and denied in part.

United States v. State of Washington
2007 WL 30869
No. CV 9213
United States District Court, W.D. Washington, at Seattle, January 4, 2007

Subjects: Fishing rights -- Upper Skagit Indian Tribe of Washington; Fisheries -- Suquamish Indian Tribe of the Port Madison Reservation, Washington -- Defined.

*Synopsis: (from the opinion) This subproceeding was initiated as a Request for Determination (“Request”) filed by the Upper Skagit Indian Tribe (“Upper Skagit”), asking the Court to determine that certain areas known as Saratoga Passage and Skagit Bay, on the eastern side of Whidbey Island, are not within the usual and accustomed fishing area (“U & A”) of the Suquamish Indian Tribe (“Suquamish”) as it was defined in U.S. v. Washington, 459 F.Supp. 1020 (1978).

*Holding: not yet available

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