The Mohawks of Akwesasne have a right to cross the Canada-U.S. border without paying duties, the Federal Court of Appeal confirmed this month.

The federal government had appealed a lower court ruling that Mohawks have the constitutional right to move purchased

goods over the border without paying duty.

“We anticipate Canada will appeal to the Supreme Court,” said Akwesasne Grand Chief Mike Mitchell in a statement.

“However, it has been our experience that with each level of the court process in Canada our case gets stronger.”

About 7,500 people live in Akwesasne, which is split in half by the Canada-U.S.border. Mitchell represents the Canadian side. The case started in March 1988, whenMitchell loaded a truck with personal goods and crossed into Canada from the U.S. Herefused to pay $361.64 in duties and was charged under the Customs Act.