[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 78 (Monday, April 23, 2012)]
[Notices]
[Pages 24222-24223]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-9729]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE

[Docket No. OTJ 102]


Solicitation of Comments on Request for United States Assumption 
of Concurrent Federal Criminal Jurisdiction; White Earth Nation

AGENCY: Office of Tribal Justice, Department of Justice.

ACTION: Notice.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: This notice solicits public comments on the Request for United 
States Assumption of Concurrent Federal Criminal Jurisdiction recently 
submitted to the Office of Tribal Justice, Department of Justice by the 
White Earth Nation pursuant to the provisions of 28 CFR 50.25.

DATES: Written comments must be postmarked and electronic comments must 
be submitted on or before June 7, 2012. Comments received by mail will 
be considered timely if they are postmarked on or before that date. The 
electronic Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) will accept comments 
until Midnight Eastern Time at the end of that day.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by any of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. 
Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
     Mail or Hand Delivery/Courier: submit written comments via 
regular or express mail to Mr. Tracy Toulou, Director, Office of Tribal 
Justice, Department of Justice, 950 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Room 2310, 
Washington, DC 20530.

[[Page 24223]]

     Fax: submit comments to the attention of Mr. Tracy Toulou, 
Office of Tribal Justice, Department of Justice, (202) 514-9078 (not a 
toll-free number).

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Please contact Mr. Tracy Toulou, 
Director, Office of Tribal Justice, Department of Justice, at (202) 
514-8812 (not a toll-free number). To ensure proper handling of 
comments, please reference ``Docket No. OTJ 102'' on all electronic and 
written correspondence. The Department encourages all comments be 
submitted electronically through http://www.regulations.gov using the 
electronic comment form provided on that site. An electronic copy of 
the request for United States assumption of concurrent federal criminal 
jurisdiction submitted by the White Earth Nation is also available at 
the http://www.regulations.gov Web site for easy reference. Paper 
comments that duplicate the electronic submission are not necessary as 
all comments submitted to http://www.regulations.gov will be posted for 
public review and are part of the official docket record.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Posting of Public Comments. Please note that 
all comments received are considered part of the public record and made 
available for public inspection online at http://www.regulations.gov. 
Such information includes personal identifying information (such as 
your name and address) voluntarily submitted by the commenter.
    You are not required to submit personal identifying information in 
order to comment on this rule. Nevertheless, if you want to submit 
personal identifying information (such as your name and address) as 
part of your comment, but do not want it to be posted online, you must 
include the phrase ``PERSONAL IDENTIFYING INFORMATION'' in the first 
paragraph of your comment. You also must locate all the personal 
identifying information you do not want posted online in the first 
paragraph of your comment and identify what information you want 
redacted.
    If you want to submit confidential business information as part of 
your comment but do not want it to be posted online, you must include 
the phrase ``CONFIDENTIAL BUSINESS INFORMATION'' in the first paragraph 
of your comment. You also must prominently identify confidential 
business information to be redacted within the comment. If a comment 
has so much confidential business information that it cannot be 
effectively redacted, all or part of that comment may not be posted on 
http://www.regulations.gov.
    Personal identifying information and confidential business 
information identified and located as set forth above will be placed in 
the agency's public docket file, but not posted online. If you wish to 
inspect the agency's public docket file in person by appointment, 
please see the paragraph above entitled FOR FURTHER INFORMATION 
CONTACT.

Statutory Background

    For more than two centuries, the Federal Government has recognized 
Indian tribes as domestic sovereigns that have unique government-to-
government relationships with the United States. Congress has broad 
authority to legislate with respect to Indian tribes, however, and has 
exercised this authority to establish a complex jurisdictional scheme 
for the prosecution of crimes committed in Indian country. (The term 
``Indian country'' is defined in 18 U.S.C. 1151.) Criminal jurisdiction 
in Indian country typically depends on several factors, including the 
nature of the crime; whether the alleged offender, the victim, or both 
are Indian; and whether a treaty, Federal statute, executive order, or 
judicial decision has conferred jurisdiction on a particular 
government.
    The Tribal Law and Order Act (TLOA) was enacted on July 29, 2010, 
as Title II of Public Law 111-211. The purpose of the TLOA is to help 
the Federal Government and tribal governments better address the unique 
public-safety challenges that confront tribal communities. Section 
221(b) of the new law, now codified at 18 U.S.C. 1162(d), permits an 
Indian tribe with Indian country subject to State criminal jurisdiction 
under Public Law 280, Public Law 83-280, 67 Stat. 588 (1953) to request 
that the United States accept concurrent jurisdiction to prosecute 
violations of the General Crimes Act and the Major Crimes Act within 
that tribe's Indian country.

Department of Justice Regulation Implementing 18 U.S.C. 1162(d)

    On December 6, 2011, 76 FR 76037 the Department published final 
regulations that established the framework and procedures for a 
mandatory Public Law 280 tribe to request the assumption of concurrent 
Federal criminal jurisdiction within the Indian country of the tribe 
that is subject to Public Law 280. 28 CFR 50.25. Among other 
provisions, the regulations provide that upon receipt of a tribal 
request the Office of Tribal Justice shall publish a notice in the 
Federal Register seeking comments from the general public.

Request by the White Earth Nation

    By a request dated February 8, 2012, the White Earth Nation located 
in the State of Minnesota requested the United States to assume 
concurrent Federal jurisdiction to prosecute violations of 18 U.S.C. 
1152 (the General Crimes, or Indian Country Crimes, Act) and 18 U.S.C. 
1153 (the Major Crimes Act) within the Indian country of the tribe. 
This would allow the United States to assume concurrent criminal 
jurisdiction over offenses within the Indian country of the tribe 
without eliminating or affecting the State's existing criminal 
jurisdiction.

Solicitation of Comments

    This notice solicits public comments on the above request.

    Dated: April 17, 2012.
Tracy Toulou,
Director, Office of Tribal Justice.
[FR Doc. 2012-9729 Filed 4-20-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4410-07-P