Are Obstruction of Justice Charges in Tribal Courts the same as in criminal court?
The two charges you refer to are governed vary in definition by the laws of each state and cover a broad number of prohibited actions. The terms may be used interchangeably.
A person who intentionally obstructs, impairs, impedes, hinders, prevents, or perverts the administration of law or other governmental function is guilty of Obstruction of Government Function. Obstruction of Justice has been defined as any interference of the administration and due process of law. It may occur during an investigation, as well as during a trial, and involve intereference with the work of police officers, investigators, or government agencies. Interfering with the a court trial, such as by threatening a juror or witness, may be an obstruction of justice.
Public Law 280 was passed conferring state criminal and civil jurisdiction over Indians in Indian country in a number of states, and the extent and nature of that jurisdiction evolved in the courts. The courts drew a criminal-prohibitory/civil-regulatory distinction between laws, holding that when states did not criminally prohibit an activity but rather permitted and regulated it, such activity was similarly permitted in Indian country, subject to tribal regulation that might differ from state regulation. If the intent of a state law is generally to prohibit certain conduct, it falls within Pub. L. 280's grant of criminal jurisdiction, but if the state law generally permits the conduct at issue, subject to regulation, it must be classified as civil/regulatory and Pub. L. 280 does not authorize its enforcement on an Indian reservation. The shorthand test is whether the conduct at issue violates the state's public policy.
Becuase obstruction charges generally fall under criminal classifications in Oklahoma, the state may prohibit such conduct on tribal lands. The precise nature of the conduct will determine which criminal statute and definition applies.
The following are OK examples of some criminal obstruction statutes:
§ 21-540. Obstruction officer.
Any person who willfully delays or obstructs any public officer in
the discharge or attempt to discharge any duty of his office, is
guilty of a misdemeanor.
§ 21-1217. Firemen — Interference with performance of duties.
Any person or persons acting in concert with each other who knowingly
and willfully interfere with, molest, or assault firemen in the
performance of their duties, or who knowingly and willfully obstruct,
interfere with or impede the progress of firemen to reach the destination
of a fire, shall be deemed guilty of a felony and shall be punished
therefor by imprisonment in the State Penitentiary for a term not
exceeding ten (10) years nor less than two (2) years.