News and Press Releases

Raymond Parker, Jr. Pleads Guilty in U.S. Federal Cour

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The United States Attorney's Office announced that during a federal court session in Great Falls, on ?, 2011, before U.S. District Judge Sam E. Haddon, RAYMOND PARKER, JR., a 56-year-old resident of Box Elder, was arraigned and pled guilty to theft from an Indian tribal organization. Sentencing has been set for September 15, 2011. He is currently released on special conditions.

In an Offer of Proof filed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael S. Lahr, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:

On April 16, 2009, PARKER applied for a credit card for official Tribal government use. Based on his application, a credit card was issued to PARKER for official Tribal use.

Under the terms of the Chippewa Cree Tribal Credit Card Policy, use of a Tribal credit card is authorized only for travel-related expenses while on official Tribal business travel. Retail spending is only authorized for Tribal business purposes.

From May 10, 2009, until November 19, 2010, PARKER used his official Tribal credit card to make charges in the amount of $58,938.23. Of the total, $22,229.29 went for purchases primarily at restaurants, hotels and gas stations. The remaining $36,708.94 was taken out in cash advances.

When questioned, PARKER admitted that all but a few of the charges were unauthorized personal charges and that he knew the Tribal credit card was only for authorized business purposes and not for personal use.

Credit card statements would show that PARKER used the Tribal credit card for unauthorized purchases and cash advances in Box Elder, Havre, Great Falls and other places in Montana. The statements would also show that PARKER used the Tribal credit card for unauthorized purchases and cash advances in Las Vegas, Spokane, Post Falls, Reno, Denver and elsewhere.

All of the credit card payments to cover PARKER's unauthorized purchases and cash advances were made by the Chippewa Cree Tribe from Chippewa Cree Tribal funds. PARKER did not make any payments to cover the unauthorized charges and has not reimbursed the Tribe for the payments it made.

PARKER faces possible penalties of 5 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and 3 years supervised release.

The investigation was conducted by the U.S. Secret Service.

A copy of the Offer of Proof can be obtained by contacting Sally Frank at (406) 247-4638.



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