A federal judge has ordered a southern Arizona tribe to produce records of the discussion between the tribal council and one of its district councils about plans to open a Phoenix-area casino.
US.- A federal judge has ordered a southern Arizona tribe to produce records showing what the tribal council and one of its district councils discussed in 2002 and 2003 about plans to open a Phoenix-area casino.
The order from Campbell came over the objections of lawyers for the Tohono O’Odham Nation, who argued that legislative and attorney-client privilege barred the release of notes taken during closed sessions. In addition, Campbell barred tribal witnesses from claiming legislative privilege when questioned about the tribe’s plans.
The Arizona Gaming Department is trying to show that the tribe engaged in fraud when it entered into a 2002 gambling regulation agreement with the state that was approved by voters. The tribe bought land near University of Phoenix stadium in 2009 and announced plans to build a large casino there.
The casino opened last year with limited gambling because the state is refusing to issue certificates allowing full casino operations.
On its part, the tribe sued, arguing that the state gambling compact and federal law allowed it to open the casino. Arizona counter-sued, claiming that the tribe secretly planned the casino whilst publicly saying it would not be allowed to build a casino in the Phoenix area.