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Quechan protesters arrested at planned casino site

Members of the Quechan Nation were arrested on Tuesday for protesting at the tribe's planned casino site in Imperial County, California.

Priscilla Prettybird and the protesters set up a ceremonial sweat lodge at the site. She said the historically important land shouldn't be used for a $200 million casino.

"It is essentially a Mecca, equivalent to what the Statue of Liberty means to this country," she told The Yuma Sun.

The tribe, which is based in California and Arizona, had ordered the protesters to leave on Monday. President Mike Jackson Sr. said there were safety concerns during construction.

"We respect their right as tribal members to protest the project and exercise their right to free speech, just not on a construction site," he told the paper. "We don't want anyone hurt."

Prettybird doesn't oppose gaming but wants the tribe to consider another location for the development.

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Protesters of new Quechan casino arrested (The Yuma Sun 6/13)