Cayuga Nation wins tobacco taxation decision

The Cayuga Nation of New York resumed the sale of tobacco products after winning a decision from the state appellate court.

The tribe operates two smoke shops on its ancestral reservation. Last November, authorities from two counties raided the facilities and seized 17,600 cartons of cigarettes and other tribal property.

The smoke shops are not on trust land. But the appellate division ruled that the properties have been designated as a "qualified reservation" under state law and are therefore immune from state taxation.

"The Nation is very gratified by this decision, which will permit it to resume doing what every other Indian tribe in the state has been doing for years without threat of criminal prosecution," attorney Dan French told The Syracuse Post-Standard.

Get the Story:
Court ruling puts Cayuga Indian Nation back in cigarette business (The Syracuse Post-Standard 7/11)

New York Appellate Division Decision:
Cayuga Nation v. Gould (July 10, 2009)

New York Supreme Court Decision:
Cayuga Nation v. Gould (December 9, 2008)

Related Stories:
Battle over Cayuga Nation tobacco continues (3/6)
Cayuga Nation halts sale of tax-free cigarettes (2/20)
Judge rules against Cayuga Nation tobacco sales (2/19)
Cayuga Nation to reopen disputed smoke shops (01/30)
Court halts Cayuga Nation tobacco prosecution (01/22)
Cayuga Nation seeks halt to tobacco prosecution (1/13)
Cayuga Nation plans to fight tobacco tax charges (12/10)
Cayuga Nation in court over raid of smokeshops (12/4)
Cayuga Nation claims 'reservation' exemption (12/2)
Cayuga Nation heads to court after smokeshop raid (12/1)
County authorities raid Cayuga Nation smoke shops (11/26)