May 13, 2010 - Authority to regulate Internet cigarette sales made from an American Indian reservation in another state was upheld Wednesday in a ruling by the Oregon Court of Appeals.
Scott Maybee, an enrolled member of the Seneca Nation of Indians in New York state, had argued Oregon law did not apply to the reservation and he was subject only to federal law. The court rejected his claims, ruling that Oregon law did not regulate his business operations on the reservation, and instead affected only the products his business sold in Oregon.
Mr. Maybee lost in a similar case in the State of Idaho.. The Idaho Supreme Court had rejected an appeal by an online cigarette marketer, Mr. Maybee, who claimed his company was immune from state laws regulating tobacco sales. (Idaho - online cigarette marketer not immune from state laws..)
In an opinion by Presiding Judge David Schuman, the Court of Appeals said that "state courts may exercise jurisdiction in civil cases involving Native Americans and relating to conduct that extends beyond the reservation's boundaries."
As a result of enforcement action, Oregon Attorney General Hardy Myers also said in that report the Oregon Department of Revenue collected more than $680,000 in past-due taxes from consumers who purchased from Maybee's sites.
Reference: Ore. court upholds Web cigarette sale regulation by WILLIAM McCALL, Associated Press, 5/12/2010.