ABERDEEN, S.D. — Four of six people charged in a tribal embezzlement case in South Dakota have pleaded guilty in federal court in Aberdeen.

Carrie Godfrey, Gerald Heminger Jr. and Colette White pleaded guilty this week to conspiracy to commit theft from a tribal organization, the Aberdeen News (http://bit.ly/2rm87fY ) reported.

Court documents show the case involves the unlawful spending of more than $81,000 from Big Coulee District, a political subdivision of the Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate tribe.

Godfrey’s plea agreement said she’ll pay over $31,000 in restitution to Big Coulee. Heminger and White will pay Big Coulee more than $5,000 each.

Gerald German Jr. pleaded guilty to theft from a tribal organization. He agreed to pay nearly $17,000 to Big Coulee and $63,000 to the Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate. The second payment is in connection to a separate case.

The defendants were on the executive board of the Big Coulee District. While board members receive a stipend, court documents show the group issued checks for personal use from 2011-13.

They are scheduled to be sentenced in August.

The two other defendants in the case are Ann German, who was the district coordinator, and Calvin Max Sr., who was on the executive board. German is scheduled for a hearing May 30. According to her plea agreement, she will plead guilty to conspiracy to commit theft from a tribal organization. No plea agreement has been reached in Max’s case.

Big Coulee District administers assistance programs for home and emergency repairs.


Information from: Aberdeen American News, http://www.aberdeennews.com

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