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Cayuga Nation V. Gould - Decision Part III

 Legal Timeline of Case:
  • November 25th, 2008:  Two Cayuga Indian Nation-owned cigarette shops (Lakeside Trading in Seneca Falls & Union Springs), were raided by officials from the Cayuga County and Seneca County Sheriff's Department.
  • December 9th, 2008:  Judge rules in favor of Cayuga and Seneca counties, supporting their right to pursue a tax evasion investigation against the Cayuga Nation. (Click here for decision)
  • January 21st, 2009:  Appellate court issues preliminary injunction preventing tax evasion investigation from going forward until appeal is heard.
  • February 18th, 2009:  Judge says Cayuga Nation cannot sell cigarettes until appeals court rules on legality of Indian Nation selling cigarettes.
  • April 3rd, 2009:  Appeals court hears arguments on whether criminal tax evasion investigation is legal.
  • July 10th, 2009:  Court rules Cayugas can sell cigarettes.  
  • July 13th, 2009:  Cayuga Nation presents settlement offer to Cayuga and Seneca counties.  Cayugas offered to pay legal fees for both counties and would not pursue a lawsuit if both counties dropped their pursuit of an investigation.  The next day, both counties rejected the offer.
  • August 27th, 2009:  Cigarettes seized in raid will not be returned to Cayuga Nation because they are part of an ongoing investigation, a judge rules.
  • October 2nd, 2009:  State appellate court rules counties can take case to state's highest court.
  • March 25th, 2010:  State Court of Appeals hears arguments from both sides in case.
  • May 11th, 2010:  Court of Appeals, rules Cayuga Nation cannot face criminal tax evasion charges and says state should institute system to separate sales to natives from sales to non-natives.  (Note:  Judges in majority decision also ruled that the Cayugas' stores are located on qualified reservations according to the federal government and the state's tax law.)  Click here for full-decision: