Former Mille Lacs executive charged in tribal court
Melanie Benjamin, the former chief executive of Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe in Minnesota, says charges against her in tribal court are frivolous.

Benjamin was ousted last year amid allegations of improper use of tribal funds for work done at her house. The charges against her, however, involve other incidents, including alleged theft and extortion.

The tribe said Benjamin racked up nearly $34,000 in charges on her tribe's "Diamond Players Club Card." The amount rises to the level of a felony, which should be prosecuted in state court, the Mille Lacs County attorney said.

"Given that Minnesota is a Public Law 280 state and that theft is criminal prohibitory in nature, any thefts should be prosecuted in state court," Kolb told The Mille Lacs Messenger.

If convicted in tribal court, Benjamin will be barred from running for office in the future.

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Benjamin charged in Tribal Court (The Mille Lacs Messenger 2/3)

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