Oklahoma tribes want criminal justice agreements with state

The Associated Press - January 16, 2021 11:45 am

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Tribe leaders of the Cherokee and Chickasaw Nations want Congress to allow them to make agreements with the state of Oklahoma following a U.S. Supreme Court decision regarding criminal jurisdiction.

Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin, Jr. said the ruling affirmed that the reservations of the Five Tribes were never disestablished. The high court ruled that Oklahoma prosecutors lack the authority to pursue criminal cases against Native American defendants in parts of the states.

Tribal officials said if Congress approves legislation allowing for compacts between individual tribes and the state, the sovereign governments could develop a workable system for criminal jurisdiction that ensures public safety and justice.


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