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Subway Founder Revealed as Tribal Casino Supporter

13 February 2004

CONNECTICUT – As reported by the Connecticut Day: "Subway restaurant founder Frederick A. DeLuca revealed Thursday that he has backed the Schaghticoke Tribal Nation since 1996 with hopes of helping it to build a casino resort in Bridgeport, where he opened his first submarine sandwich shop 39 years ago.

"The tribe had been unwilling to discuss its casino plans prior to receiving federal recognition. In the wake of the Bureau of Indian Affairs' positive decision Jan. 29, and with pressure and speculation about the tribe's casino plans mounting daily, Chief Richard Velky asked DeLuca to make the announcement.

"DeLuca stressed during a telephone interview that a Bridgeport casino is his preference, but the citizens of the host community, the Schaghticokes and elected officials would make the final decision.

"…DeLuca, 56, said he knew very little about the gaming industry when a Hartford Subway franchise owner introduced him to Chief Velky eight years ago.

"…DeLuca has provided 90 percent of the estimated $10 million the Schaghticokes spent on genealogists, lawyers, lobbyists and other experts during their long quest for federal recognition. He said he knew the process would take a long time…"

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