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Feds: Report Shows Progress In Tribal Prosecutions

Fargo, N.D. (AP) Federal attorneys say a report on tribal prosecutions shows continued improvement since a study that criticized the Department of Justice for turning its back on reservation crime. The report released Tuesday shows that 2,542 cases were filed in Indian country in 2013, a 34 percent increase from five years ago when the federal government began its tribal justice initiative. That's down from 3,145 cases brought in 2012, which DOJ officials attributed primarily to reduced budgets and a hiring freeze. A U.S. Government accountability office study released in 2010 revealed that federal prosecutors had declined 50 percent of American Indian cases in a five-year period ending in 2009. Timothy Purdon, U.S. Attorney for North Dakota, says the updated report shows the feds are keeping promises to improve tribal public safety.