Trial pushed back in Chippewa Cree theft case
A judge has set a Feb. 3 trial date for five people charged with embezzling hundreds of thousands of dollars in federal stimulus aid from the Chippewa Cree tribe.
U.S. District Judge Dana Christensen ordered the new trial date Thursday after federal prosecutors arraigned the defendants earlier this month on a new indictment charging embezzlement, theft and bribery.
The trial originally had been set for Nov. 12, but Christensen pushed it back due to the new charges and the complexity of the case.
Former state Rep. Tony Belcourt, his wife, Hailey, and three others are accused of diverting some of the federal funding the tribe received in 2009 and 2010 for construction of a water pipeline to the Rocky Boy's Indian Reservation.
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