Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Indians waited too long.

That's the sense of the USSC 8-1. In an opinion issued today concerning the Oneida Indians of upstate New York, the Court rejected their attempt to assert claims over the 6,000,000 acres they once owned. Holding: "Given the longstanding, distinctly non-Indian character of central New York and its inhabitants, the regulatory authority over the area constantly exercised by the State and its counties and towns for 200 years, and the Oneidas’ long delay in seeking judicial relief against parties other than the United States, standards of federal Indian law and federal equity practice preclude the Tribe from unilaterally reviving its ancient sovereignty, in whole or in part, over the parcels at issue. The Oneidas long ago relinquished governmental reins and cannot regain them through open-market purchases from current titleholders."

You got claims, you better make them timely ... hanging out is going to prejudice you.

The entire opinion can be read here.

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