Judge dismisses Jemez Pueblo’s suit against the Valles Caldera

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By The Staff

U.S District Court Judge Robert Brack issued a ruling in the Pueblo of Jemez v. United States of America case, which sought to return the Valles Caldera National Preserve to the Jemez Pueblo.
Brack dismissed the Jemez Pueblo’s claim in his decision.
Valles Caldera Trust, Board of Trustees Chairman Kent Salazar issued the following statement,
“On Sept. 24, 2013, the United States District Court of the District of New Mexico dismissed the Pueblo of Jemez’s lawsuit related to the lands in and around the Valles Caldera. We will continue to work closely with the Pueblo nonetheless to ensure the cultural history, spiritual significance and the landscape are preserved for generations to come. It is what we do as the Valles Caldera Trust and what we are committed to as friends and neighbors of the Pueblo of Jemez.”
Brack’s ruling stated the following.
“Defendant is immune from suit unless it consents to be sued. Plaintiff has the burden of establishing jurisdiction. This Court lacks subject matter jurisdiction over a claim against Defendant for which sovereign immunity has not been waived.
“ Plaintiff has not met its burden to establish a valid waiver of sovereign immunity. As a result, Plaintiff’s claim may not proceed and the statute of limiatations had run out.

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