- Associated Press - Sunday, May 15, 2016

TACOMA, Wash. (AP) - A former member of the Makah Tribal Council has been sentenced to six months in prison for embezzling tribal money.

Ryland Chad Bowechop, of Bellingham, pleaded guilty in February to federal charges that he illegally used a Makah tribal credit card to pay for personal expenses, including withdrawing cash at casinos. The 38-year-old is required to pay $30,000 in restitution to the tribe.

U.S. Attorney Annette Hayes said in a written statement that Bowechop not only stole $30,000 from his tribe but betrayed the trust of the people he was supposed to serve.

Bowechop was elected to the tribal council in 2009. He was sentenced in federal court in Tacoma Friday.


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