Lac Vieux tribal council released from jail

Watersmeet, Mihigan (AP) September 2010

The nine members of the tribal council of the Lac Vieux Desert Band of Lake Superior Chippewa in Watersmeet who were jailed in a dispute over the election of new members have been released.

WLUC-TV and the Daily Globe of Ironwood report the council was freed Sept. 11 after a tribal appellate court decision.

The council was arrested Sept. 8. Judge Bradley Dakota of the Keewenaw Bay Indian Community had ordered the council held until a majority agreed to swear in a new executive council. The tribal council refused.

Council lawyer Zeke Fletcher says the appellate court issued a stay of Dakota’s contempt of court order. Council members have said they were being punished for upholding the tribe’s constitution.

Watersmeet is located in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.