Kevin Abourezk: Oglala Sioux Tribe in $500M Whiteclay case

"South Dakota's largest Sioux tribe filed a federal lawsuit Thursday to stem the flow of millions of cans of beer across its border from a 10-person town in Nebraska.

The Oglala Sioux Tribe seeks $500 million from more than a dozen defendants, ranging from dusty beer shacks in Whiteclay to the nation's biggest breweries. The 10-page lawsuit alleges the breweries and distributors provided alcohol to the four stores on the Nebraska border, which in turn sold it to residents of the officially dry Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

It alleges the defendants violated the tribe's alcohol ban as well as Nebraska law by providing alcohol to the reservation's residents, knowing those residents would resell much of that beer to other residents on the reservation.

"That is like handing a baseball bat to someone in an alley, knowing they're going to hit somebody, and hit somebody they did," said Tom White, an Omaha attorney and former state senator representing the tribe."

Get the Story:
Oglala Sioux Tribe sues Whiteclay stores, beer makers, distributors (The Lincoln Journal Star 2/10)

Also Today:
Oglala Sioux Tribe sues Nebraska alcohol distributors (The Daily Nebraskan 2/10)
Tribe sues brewers for alcohol woes (The Sioux Falls Argus Leader 2/10)
Oglala Sioux Tribe of South Dakota sues beer companies over alcoholism problems on reservation (AP 2/10)

Related Stories:
Oglala Sioux Tribe files lawsuit targeting liquor in Whiteclay (2/9)

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