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Appeals court to hear Mashpee recognition case

A federal appeals court will hear oral arguments on Friday in the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe's recognition case.

The Massachusetts-based tribe went to court to force the Bureau of Indian Affairs to act. A federal judge had ordered the BIA to issue preliminary ruling by June of last year.

But as the deadline came and went, the BIA appealed to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, contending that it can't be forced to make a decision.

The case is Mashpee Tribal Council v. Norton, No. 02-5139.

Relevant Links:
D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals Schedule - http://pacer.cadc.uscourts.gov/common/courtrm/60day.html

Related Stories:
BIA delaying decision on Mass. tribe (12/20)
Mass. town accused of hindering recognition (10/30)
Jump in recognition petitions noted (06/12)
BIA recognition staff fails pressure test (05/31)
Wampanoag leader remembered (03/08)

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