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North Carolina raids 3 casinos run by unrecognized tribe

July 24, 2018
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In this Monday, July 23, 2018 photo, provided by the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, an Alcohol Law Enforcement agent looks over a cellphone in front of a row of gaming machines after authorities raided illegally operated casinos near Laurinburg, N.C. North Carolina authorities, on Monday, raided three casinos they say were illegally operated by the Tuscarora Nation, which lacks federal or state recognition as a Native American tribe. (North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation via AP)

LAURINBURG, N.C. (AP) — Authorities arrested 26 people in raids on three casinos they say were illegally operated by the Tuscarora Indian Nation of North Carolina, which lacks federal or state recognition as a Native American tribe.

The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation says members of the group were making threats of war against law enforcement and operating illegal casinos, marijuana grows and an unlicensed police force.

Alcohol Law Enforcement head Terrance Merriweather says neighbors complained and the group “openly expressed beliefs that neither the laws of North Carolina nor the United States applied to them.”

Authorities also confiscated vehicles, drugs, money, weapons and more than 200 gambling machines on Monday.

There was no answer Tuesday at home or office listings for the organization’s leader, Kendall Locklear, who was among those arrested.

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