The famous Cobell class action case, first filed in 1996, in which up to 500,000 Indian plaintiffs sued the United States for mismanagement of their trust assets, is finally over.
A federal judge approved yesterday the $3.4 billion settlement between the U.S. government and American Indians who sued 15 years ago over mismanagement of their trust accounts.
Barring an appeal, nearly half a million Indians could begin receiving $1,000 checks within three or four months.
U.S. District Judge Thomas F. Hogan’s approval of the settlement came after a daylong hearing in a packed courtroom in which he listened to about a dozen opponents of the settlement.
“The process has gone on long enough,” Hogan said after summing up the bitter legal struggles between the government and Indians.