French auction house defends upcoming sale of sacred items

The Paris auction house criticized for putting up for bid objects held sacred by Native American tribes is defending its upcoming sale.

EVE auction house director Alain Leroy said Friday all the items are of legal trade in both the U.S. and France and that tribes will have an opportunity through the auction process to acquire their past.

Monday's planned auction will feature hundreds of religious items and art pieces from the Americas, Africa and Asia. Included is a ceremonial shield from a Native American tribe in New Mexico.

Acoma Pueblo Gov. Kurt Riley argues it's illegal to trade and sell Native American items considered sacred or used in worship. He has reached out to the French people through an open letter in an effort to halt such auctions.