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Native American man behind historic McGirt vs. Oklahoma case indicted in federal court

Feds indict Native American man behind historic McGirt vs. Oklahoma case
Posted at 8:24 AM, Sep 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-22 09:24:25-04

MUSKOGEE, Okla. — A Native American man behind a historic Supreme Court case now faces federal charges.

The plaintiff in the historic McGirt versus Oklahoma case, Jimcy McGirt, 71, is charged with three counts of aggravated sexual abuse, according to United States Attorney Brian J. Kuester.

In the Supreme Court case, McGirt appealed his conviction on state charges, saying "The state lacked jurisdiction to prosecute him" because he is Native American and the crime took place on Native American land.

The court ruled in McGirt's favor, saying Oklahoma prosecutors lacked the authority to pursue criminal cases in a large portion of eastern Oklahoma that remains an American Indian reservation.

READ MORE: Supreme Court rules much of eastern Oklahoma remains tribal reservation

Therefore, only the Federal Government can prosecute Native American people for crimes committed on native lands.

According to Kuester, McGirt is charged with three counts of sexual abuse of a minor, stating, "Allegations are, in 1996, McGirt knowingly engaged in sexual acts with a child under the age of 12."

The Department of Justice announced 32 unsealed indictments from a federal grand jury, with many of the charges happening 'in Indian country.'

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