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Richardson Blocks Roads to Akela Flats Casino

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February 28, 2008

LAS CRUCES,NM - Governor Bill Richardson ordered 50 state police today to block roads to the Fort Sill Apache land at Akela Flats where the tribe is preparing to open a new casino. Akela Flats is in Luna County about 40 miles west of Las Cruces.

Last month the tribe announced plans to connect 8 portable buildings as a temporary 11,000-square-foot casino for high-stakes bingo games and a few table games for which the house does not bank the winnings.

The New Mexico Gaming Control Board learned the casino could open any day now, so Governor Richardson decided to take this action because he had no assurances from the federal government that it would approve or reject the casino. He said "We have emphatically stated our opposition to what clearly would be an illegal gaming operation in the state of New Mexico. Because the federal government is abdicating its responsibility, I have no choice but to take immediate and forceful action to protect the citizens of New Mexico and the integrity of our gaming laws."

For the reaction from the Fort Sill Apache tribe, visit their website at www. for the article entitled "New Mexico Governor Illegally Blocks Access To Federal Recognized Indian Land ."

Read Governor Richardson's Letter.

Return to New Mexico Casinos.

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