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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of South Dakota

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, March 18, 2019

Business Owner and Business Face Federal Charges for Embezzlement and Theft from Indian Tribal Organizations

Defendant Prosecuted as Part of The Guardians Project, a Federal Law Enforcement Initiative to Combat Corruption, Fraud, and Abuse in South Dakota

United States Attorney Ron Parsons announced that a business owner and his business have been indicted by a federal grand jury for Embezzlement and Theft from an Indian Tribal Organization. 

Dustin Martin Kirk, age 46 of Sisseton, South Dakota, was indicted on March 5, 2019, on two counts of embezzlement and theft from an Indian Tribal Organization.  Two counts in the indictment relate to his dissolved business, Siouxland Lumber & Materials, LLC.  Kirk appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge William D. Gerdes on March 11, 2019, and pleaded not guilty to the Indictment. 

The Indictment alleges that between in or about August 2016 and December 2018, in the District of South Dakota, Dustin Martin Kirk and his business embezzled, stole, and converted more than $1,000 of monies, funds, credits, goods, assets, and other property belonging to Dakota Nation Development Corporation and the Sisseton-Wahpeton Housing Authority, both of which being entities of the Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate Sioux Tribe and Indian Tribal Organizations.

The maximum penalty upon conviction on each count is up to 5 years in prison and/or a $250,000 fine, 3 years of supervised release, and $100 to the Federal Crime Victims Fund.  Restitution may also be ordered.

The investigation is being conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. Attorney’s Office.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeremy Jehangiri is prosecuting the case.

The charges are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. 

The case was brought pursuant to The Guardians Project, a federal law enforcement initiative to coordinate efforts between participating agencies, to promote citizen disclosure of public corruption, fraud, and embezzlement involving federal program funds, contracts, and grants, and to hold accountable those who are responsible for adversely affecting those living in South Dakota’s Indian country communities.  The Guardians Project is another step of federal law enforcement’s on-going efforts to increase engagement, coordination, and positive action on behalf of tribal communities.  Led by the U.S. Attorney’s Office, the participating agencies include:  Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Offices of Inspector General for the Departments of Interior, Health and Human Services, Social Security Administration, Agriculture, Transportation, Education, Justice, and Housing and Urban Development; Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division; U.S. Postal Inspector Service; U.S. Postal Service, Office of Inspector General.

For additional information about the Guardians Project, please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Office at (605) 330-4400.  To report a suspected crime, please contact law enforcement at the federal agency’s locally listed telephone number.

Topic(s): 
Financial Fraud
Indian Country Law and Justice
Component(s): 
Updated March 18, 2019