Former Employee Sentenced for Stealing Money from Kickapoo Traditional Tribe of Texas
DEL RIO – A federal judge sentenced 50-year-old Eduardo Riojas Villarreal of San Antonio to 21 months in federal prison yesterday for stealing money from the Kickapoo Traditional Tribe of Texas (Kickapoo).
In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Court Judge Alia Moses ordered Villarreal to pay $167,109.41 in restitution to the Kickapoo and be placed on supervised release for a period of three years after completing his prison term.
On September 9, 2019, Villarreal pleaded guilty to one count of embezzlement and theft from Indian organizations. According to court documents, Villarreal served as an accounts payable manager for the Kickapoo for approximately four years beginning in April 2017. During that time, Villarreal wrote fraudulent checks payable to his wife from the Kickapoo general operating account, which is funded primarily by revenue from the Lucky Eagle Casino. He deposited those checks into his own personal bank account. Villarreal admitted there was no legitimate basis for issuing these checks and that his wife knew nothing about his scheme.
The FBI conducted this investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Sydni Connell, Sarah Spears and Justin Chung prosecuted this case.