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Jeffery James, Teddy Biljabu, Billy Dunn and others on behalf of the Martu People v the State of Western Australia and others

Jeffery James, Teddy Biljabu, Billy Dunn and others on behalf of the Martu People v the State of Western Australia and others

Federal Court of Australia

THE Federal Court has determined that the Western Desert Land Aboriginal Corporation (Jamukurnu-Yapalikunu) is to hold the rights and interest from time to time comprising the Native Title the subject of a determination made on September 27 in trust for the common law holders that were identified in that determination.

Justice Robert French says in the reasons for his decision that he had made a determination of Native Title over 136,000 square kilometres incorporating parts of the Gibson and Great Sandy deserts and the communities of Cotton Creek and Punmu last September.

He says one of the orders in that determination was that: "Within three months of the date these orders are made, a representative of the common law holders of the Native Title rights and interests shall indicate whether they intend to have the Native Title rights and interests held in trust and if so by whom".

The determination of Native Title had been made by consent and the rights recognised did not include ownership of minerals and petroleum and maintained public access to the Canning stock route.

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