Business | Law

Yakama Nation sues federal government over raid of tobacco firm

The Yakama Nation of Washington is suing the federal government over a raid of a tobacco manufacturing company on the reservation.

The tribe says the FBI and the Department of Justice violated the Yakama Treaty of 1855. The lawsuit says the tribe should have been consulted before federal agents entered the reservation on February 16.

The FBI sent a text message to the tribe's commissioner of public safety but only after the raid had begun. "[I]t’s Jen FBI. About to do a large search on the reservation and wanted you to hear about it from us 1st. Call me asap for details," the message stated, according to the complaint.

The raid came a day after King Mountain Tobacco Co., which is licensed by the tribe and grows tobacco on the reservation, sued the state of Washington. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the treaty allows tribal members to bring goods to the market without state interference.

Turtle Talk has posted the complaint from the case, Yakama Nation v. Holder.

Get the Story:
Tribe sues feds over reservation raid (The Yakima Herald-Republic 3/11)

Related Stories:
Yakama cigarette firm raided after filing lawsuit against state (2/18)

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