Cartels Ravaging S.D. Indian Reservations with Murder, Drugs and Gang Activity

Craig Bannister | February 1, 2024
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“Make no mistake, the cartels have a presence on several of South Dakota’s tribal reservations,” Gov. Kristi Noem (R-S.D.) said Wednesday, explaining how Pres. Biden’s open-border policies have brought drugs, crime and gang activity to her state’s American Indian tribal reservations.

“The cartels are using our reservations to facilitate the spread of drugs throughout the Midwest,” Gov. Noem warned in a border address to a joint session of South Dakota’s legislature:

“South Dakota is directly affected by this invasion. We are affected by cartel presence on our tribal reservations; by the spread of drugs and human trafficking throughout our communities; and by the drain on our resources at the local, state, and federal level.”


“In particular, fentanyl – which is being manufactured by the Chinese and smuggled over our Southern Border – is causing these deaths. Total overdoses have increased by almost 20% across America since Joe Biden took office.”

The murderous illegal alien cartels are even recruiting tribal members to join in their criminal activities, Gov. Noem reported:

“Murders are being committed by cartel members on the Pine Ridge reservation and in Rapid City, and a gang called the ‘Ghost Dancers’ are affiliated with these cartels.

“They have been successful in recruiting tribal members to join their criminal activity. On the other side of the state, there is documented evidence of cartel activities on the Sisseton Wahpeton reservation and others.”

To make matters worse, South Dakota is powerless to provide the law enforcement help the tribes need, because the federal government has sole jurisdiction and responsibility to do so. The Biden Administration’s assistance has been so lacking that one tribe has been forced to sue it – twice – Gov. Noem explained:

“The Oglala Sioux Tribe sued the federal government. They pointed to evidence that the level of violent crime, drug trafficking, and gang activity on the Reservation is staggering, unprecedented, and overwhelming law enforcement resources.

“A federal judge ordered the Biden Administration to come to the table and work with the Oglala Sioux Tribe to provide the desperately needed law enforcement resources. But Biden has failed to make good on that obligation, so now the Oglala Sioux Tribe is suing again.”

Crime is so rampant that a State of Emergency has been declared on the Pine Ridge reservation, as a result of the Biden Administration’s failure to honor its obligations.

Gov. Noem said she plans to support the tribe’s latest lawsuit against the Biden Administration, which was filed on January 24, 2024.

The complaint cites “the United States’ failure to adhere to its treaty and trust responsibility to provide adequate law enforcement resources, as well as violations of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act.”

“We will continue as a nation to hold the United States accountable under our treaties,” the tribe’s president, Frank Star Comes Out, says in a press release:

“Any lawlessness in Pine Ridge starts in Washington DC! In the name of humanity, equal rights and justice, you have an oath to uphold. Honor the Treaties.”