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Aquinnah Wampanoag Tribe wants casino suit in federal court

Filed Under: Casino Stalker | Litigation
More on: land claims, massachusetts, wampanoag
The Aquinnah Wampanoag Tribe wants a gaming lawsuit filed by the state of Massachusetts moved to federal court.

The tribe has received federal approval to open a Class II gaming facility on its reservation on the island of Martha's Vineyard. Gov. Deval Patrick (D), however, claims the tribe gave up its right to gaming under the Massachusetts Indian Land Claims Settlement Act.

“Our tribe has consistently maintained that we enjoy rights to game under federal law. Federal court is the appropriate venue for this case to be heard and the tribe will vigorously defend our rights," Chairman Tobias Vanderhoop said in a statement, The Martha's Vineyard Gazette reported.

In 2004, the Massachusetts Supreme ruled that the tribe is subject to state law. The federal courts do not appear to have ruled on the issue.

Get the Story:
Tribe Wants Casino Case Tried in Federal Court (The Martha's Vineyard Gazette 12/30)
Wampanoag Tribe says casino is a federal case (The Martha's Vineyard Times 12/31)
Casino issue belongs in federal court, island tribe says (The Cape Cod Times 12/31)
Aquinnahs switch lawsuit to Federal Court (State House News Service 12/31)

Relevant Documents:
Solicitor Letter to Aquinnah Wampanoag Tribe (August 23, 2013)
NIGC Letter to Aquinnah Wampanoag Tribe (October 25, 2013)
Press Release: GSB Client Aquinnah Wampanoag to be First to Game in Massachusetts (November 12, 2013)

Related Stories:
Letter: Aquinnah Wampanoag Tribe gave up its right to gaming (12/9)

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