PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - The Internal Revenue Service has auctioned off a large swath of disputed land owned by a South Dakota Indian tribe to help pay off more than $3 million in back taxes, penalties and interest.
IRS spokeswoman Carrie Resch says the 7,100 acres of Crow Creek Sioux tribal land sold for almost $2.6 million Thursday. She did not say who bought it.
The tribe filed a lawsuit Monday in U.S. District Court in Pierre ('peer) seeking to block the sale. Judge Roberto A. Lange declined their request but said he would schedule a trial to hear the tribe's arguments.
The tribe contends that the IRS can't seize the land without congressional approval, and because the land is owned by a corporation set up under tribal laws, which is not responsible for paying the tribe's delinquent tax bill.
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