indianz.com your internet resource indianz.com on facebook indianz.com on twitter indianz.com on Google+ indianz.com on soundcloud
phone: 202 630 8439
Fredericks Peebles & Morgan LLP
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines
Print   Subscribe
1st Circuit tells Narragansett Tribe to comply with grand jury

Filed Under: Law
More on: 1st circuit, immunity, narragansett, rhode island
     

The Narragansett Tribe of Rhode Island can't assert sovereign immunity in a federal grand jury proceeding, the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals said today.

The tribe's historic preservation office refused to turn over documents to the grand jury as part of an unspecified investigation that remains under seal. The office was held in contempt and ordered to pay $500 in fines every day.

On appeal, the 1st Circuit lifted the contempt citation. The court said the contempt proceedings started after the grand jury had already expired, making the request unenforceable.

However, the court said the office can't assert immunity in future proceedings because the United States is a "superior" sovereign. Congress abrogated tribal powers through the Major Crimes Act and other federal criminal statutes, the decision stated.

"For the sake of completeness, we further note that, even if the tribes did originally enjoy sovereign immunity from federal grand jury process, Congress has abrogated that immunity through the enactment of federal criminal statutes extending to Indian country 'the general laws of the United States as to the punishment of offenses committed in any place within the sole and exclusive jurisdiction of the United States,'" the court stated, quoting a section of federal law that applies to Indian Country. "That grant of criminal jurisdiction necessarily entails the authorization of investigative and enforcement mechanisms such as the grand jury subpoena power."

The tribe's attorney, William Devereaux, declined to comment on the investigation that spurred the appeal, the Associated Press reported.

Get the Story:
Court: Federal grand jury subpoenaed Narragansett tribe, no details on investigation (AP 2/25)

1st Circuit Decision:
In Re: Grand Jury Proceedings v. District Court of Rhode Island, Providence (February 25, 2015)


Copyright © Indianz.Com
More headlines...
Stay Connected:
On Facebook

On Twitter

On Google+

On SoundCloud
Local Links:
Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
Latest News:
Lakota Country Times: Native youth work to bring relatives home (2/12)
Mark Trahant: Native voters are the true outsiders in any election (2/12)
Vincent Schilling: I am not ashamed to be a sexual assault victim (2/12)
Lakota Country Times: Missing Oglala Sioux woman found dead (2/11)
Doug George-Kanentiio: Town repays Oneida Nation with racism (2/11)
Brandon Ecoffey: Treaties guaranteed health care for our people (2/11)
Vincent Armenta: Chumash Tribe battles opponents at every turn (2/11)
Michael Marchand: Arrow Lakes people still fighting for our rights (2/11)
Steven Newcomb: Federal Indian law based on invented realities (2/11)
Native basketball tournament bars player who lacks Indian blood (2/11)
Armed occupation of wildlife refuge in Oregon ends with arrests (2/11)
Native activists ask Obama to help with liquor sales in Whiteclay (2/11)
South Dakota lawmakers kill bill to support return of land to tribes (2/11)
Miami Nation agrees to forfeit $48M from online lending business (2/11)
Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation creates $1.2M endowment at ASU (2/11)
Colville Tribes issue citation for death of rare owl on reservation (2/11)
Fort Independence Indian Community cheated by former partner (2/11)
Paskenta Band donates $125K to buy new vehicle for firefighters (2/11)
Man pleads guilty for dealing meth on Mescalero Apache Nation (2/11)
Public high school gives up racist mascot in response to new law (2/11)
Morongo Band and San Manuel Band question fantasy sports bill (2/11)
Former Sac and Fox Nation casino employee charged with theft (2/11)
Jena Band of Choctaw Indians celebrates 3rd birthday of casino (2/11)
Schaghticoke Tribal Nation again told it can't accept casino bids (2/11)
Editorial: Measure stops Lytton Band from pursuing new casinos (2/11)
Obama seeks another increase for Indian Health Service budget (2/10)
Six of 12 Indian Health Service area directors in 'acting' capacity (2/10)
Lakota Country Times: Indian lawmakers oppose drug testing bill (2/10)
Vince Two Eagles: The rez of the story about treaty-making in US (2/10)
Kristi Noem: Indian Health Service remains in state of emergency (2/10)
Chase Iron Eyes: Real sovereigns don't disenroll their own people (2/10)
Gyasi Ross: African and Native Americans fought for their survival (2/10)
Albert Bender: Tribes should reclaim land from unratified treaties (2/10)
John Lavelle: Supreme Court weighs key tribal sovereignty issue (2/10)
Women take top three leadership positions at Menominee Nation (2/10)
Northern Arapaho Tribe seeking to repatriate remains of students (2/10)
White Mountain Apache Tribe considers change to blood quantum (2/10)
Blackfeet Nation citizens still talking about constitutional reforms (2/10)
Sweat lodge at Army post helps with PTSD treatment for veterans (2/10)
Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes welcome return of land (2/10)
Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders win big in New Hampshire vote (2/10)
Prairie Island Indian Community unveils $19M gaming expansion (2/10)
Keweenaw Bay Indian Community approves upgrades at casinos (2/10)
Seminole Tribe's gaming compact takes a step forward in Florida (2/10)
Schaghticoke Tribal Nation insists on pursuing Connecticut casino (2/10)
National campaign launched to stop tribal disenrollment epidemic (2/9)
more headlines...

Home | Arts & Entertainment | Business | Canada | Cobell Lawsuit | Education | Environment | Federal Recognition | Federal Register | Forum | Health | Humor | Indian Gaming | Indian Trust | Jack Abramoff Scandal | Jobs & Notices | Law | National | News | Opinion | Politics | Sports | Technology | World

Indianz.Com Terms of Service | Indianz.Com Privacy Policy
About Indianz.Com | Advertise on Indianz.Com

Indianz.Com is a product of Noble Savage Media, LLC and Ho-Chunk, Inc.