SCOTUS Denies Cert in Mitchell v. Tulalip; Teck Metals v. Colville; and King Mountain Tobacco

Here is the order list.

Mitchell materials here.

Teck Metals materials here.

King Mountain materials here.

King Mountain Tobacco v. US Cert Petition


cert petition

Questions presented:

1. Whether the Ninth Circuit erred in holding that the Yakama Treaty must include  express exemptive language” to create an exemption from a federal tax or fee. 

2. Whether the Ninth Circuit erred in holding that the federal tobacco excise tax, 26 U.S.C. § 5701-5703, and the Fair and Equitable Tobacco Reform Act (“FETRA”), 7 U.S.C. § 518-519, apply to the Yakama Indians even though (1) the Yakama Treaty creates a right to travel in order to protect the Yakama Indians’ ability to trade and (2) these taxes and fees are triggered by the transport of goods – rather than by sale or manufacture.

Lower court materials here. Case tag here.



Ninth Circuit Rejects Treaty Defense in United States v. King Mountain Tobacco (Nos. 14-36055, 16-35607)

Here is the opinion.

An excerpt:

We affirm our longstanding rule that Indians—like all citizens—are subject to federal taxation unless expressly exempted by a treaty or congressional statute. Hoptowit, 709 F.2d at 566. In this case, neither the General Allotment Act nor the Treaty with the Yakamas expressly exempts King Mountain from the federal excise tax on manufactured tobacco products. King Mountain is therefore liable for payment of the tax and associated penalties and interest.

Briefs here.

The CA9 also rejected an appeal on a discovery issue in this matter (docket number 16-35956):

Memorandum Opinion

Briefs in that matter here.


United States v. King Mountain Tobacco — Fair and Equitable Tobacco Reform Act of 2004 Suit

Here are the materials in United States v. King Mountain Tobacco Co. (E.D. Wash.):

14 US Motion to Dismiss Counterclaim

15 US Motion for Summary J

23 King Mtn Opposition to 15

24 King Mtn Opposition to 14

26 King Mtn Response to 15

30 US Reply re 15

31 US Reply re 14

41 King Mtn Motion for Summary J

44 US Opposition to 41

45 King Mtn Reply re 41

46 DCT Order