WAYLAND, MI (WKZO) -- The U.S. Supreme Court has delivered an unwelcome one to the Gun Lake Casino owners. The Justices voted 8 to 1 that David Patchak, a former Wayland Township Trustee can proceed with his lawsuit challenging the Gun Lake Tribe’s eligibility for establishing tribal land for their casino.
Tribal Spokesman John Shagonoby says they will remain in operation while the case goes forward thru all the motions, appeals, decisions and rulings, which will take years. He says they are going to be spending a lot of money on lawyers that they would rather spend on something else, like tribal improvements or local business development.
Some unanswered questions include: are there anonymous backers funding Patchak’s case and what do they want? The suit claims the tribe is not eligible because they were not an established tribe in 1934 when the Indian Reorganization Act was passed. The tribe says the suit has no merit and they will win...eventually. Patchak has turned down all requests for interviews and his lawyer isn’t talking either.