Four former members of the Pawhuska Indian Village Board appeared in tribal court Thursday for arraignment on charges they misused tribal funds. Osage Nation authorities say they’ve known about $806,000 they say was misused by the board since 2012. That was when an audit showed the public funds could not be accounted for.
The case was first turned over to the U.S. Attorney, who eventually decided not to file charges, so Osage Nation Attorney General Jeff Jones charged the four in tribal court.
Jones told The Journal Record newspaper that under the village board constitution, members can’t get paid or accept payments from the board. He says the money in question came from casino lease payments.
According to an affidavit filed in the case, one former board member, Joe Don Mashunkashey personally profited by more than $134,000. A staff member in the Osage Nation Attorney General’s office told KGOU the case is continuing.
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