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LETTERS TO THE TIMES

For Tribe, Sovereignty Is the Real Issue

August 30, 2004

Your Aug. 26 article "Tribe May Consider L.A.-Area Casino" was misleading. It states that the Tongva-Gabrieleno tribe had a position, in court, against gambling and has had a change of heart after winning our current court case. This is not true.

The issue was our right to determine who our members are, without interference from the courts. The four people suing us wanted to join and take over the tribe in order to seek a casino; the tribe had no position in the litigation about a casino. The issues were sovereignty and jurisdiction.

As mentioned in the article, both tribal Chairman Anthony Morales and I note that the tribe has the right to explore obtaining a reservation and a casino in Los Angeles, as one of many options for economic development.

Jack L. Schwartz

Attorney, Tonga-Gabrieleno

tribe, Los Angeles

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