Taking turns, five Obama administration officials stepped up to a microphone in the south penthouse of the U.S. Interior Depart­ment last week to trumpet a $1.41 billion settlement that would bring an end to the long-running and often contentious Indian trust litigation.

For more than 13 years, a class of more than 300,000 American Indians have pursued an accounting of how the government handled a fund set up for the collection and dispersal of billions of dollars in natural resources royalties flowing from American Indian land.

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