‘Fort McMurray Fraud?’

“A Fort McMurray ‘First Nation’ {aboriginal community} councillor has filed a lawsuit alleging other leaders on council and a high-ranking staff member conspired to take more than a half-million dollars from a nearly $35-million settlement with the federal government.

“Coun. Samantha Whalen filed the lawsuit in Fort McMurray on Aug. 23. The 10-page statement of claim names Fort McMurray #468 ‘First Nation’ {a ‘nation’ of 824 people} (FM‘FN’) Chief Ronald Alfred Kreutzer, CEO Bradley Callihoo, Coun. Ronald Allen Kreutzer, ex-councillor Byron Bates and a numbered company as defendants. 

“Whalen alleges the $600,000 came out of a $34.7-million payment the ‘nation’ received as a settlement from the federal government. The ‘nation’ filed a specific claim in 1998 claiming the Crown historically failed to provide it with agricultural benefits promised under Treaty 8.

{Under Treaty 8, the government was required to provide agricultural help…

FURTHER, Her Majesty agrees that each Band that elects to take a reserve and cultivate the soil, shall, as soon as convenient after such reserve is set aside and settled upon, and the Band has signified its choice and is prepared to break up the soil, receive two hoes, one spade, one scythe and two hay forks for every family so settled, and for every three families one plough and one harrow, and to the Chief, for the use of his Band, two horses or a yoke of oxen, and for each Band potatoes, barley, oats and wheat (if such seed be suited to the locality of the reserve), to plant the land actually broken up, and provisions for one month in the spring for several years while planting such seeds; and to every family one cow, and every Chief one bull, and one mowing-machine and one reaper for the use of his Band when it is ready for them; for such families as prefer to raise stock instead of cultivating the soil, every family of five persons, two cows, and every Chief two bulls and two mowing-machines when ready for their use, and a like proportion for smaller or larger families. The aforesaid articles, machines and cattle to be given once for all for the encouragement of agriculture and stock raising; and for such Bands as prefer to continue hunting and fishing, as much ammunition and twine for making nets annually as will amount in value to one dollar per head of the families so engaged in hunting and fishing.”

Instead of complying with the treaty provisions and providing agricultural implements with which to help themselves, the current government gave them $35 million of taxpayers’ money…}

“The Crown offered the settlement on Feb. 2, 2017, the statement of claim says, and members voted to ratify the deal that June. Before the deal passed, members were consulted on how the money from the settlement would be used. Under the ratified deal, each member was to receive $20,000, totalling $15.6 million, the claim states.

“Another $8 million was to go into a community trust, $10.4 million would be placed in a settlement trust, while $800,000 was set aside for legal and associated costs.

“The Crown and the ‘First Nation’ identified 805 current or potential members during negotiations — a number which was used to calculate the per capita payment amounts.

“The claim states about $1.4 million was left over after the payments were made to members because some of those entitled to a payment could not immediately be identified. Those include members who were adopted out of the ‘nation’ as children, live off reserve or have no fixed address. The lawsuit described these members as “particularly vulnerable”.

“The lawsuit alleges Callihoo incorporated a numbered company, ‘2050787 Alberta Ltd.’ on June 15, 2017, then delivered a $600,000 invoice to the ‘nation’s council on or around Nov. 20. Whalen claims the money, which the invoice allegedly stated was for “Treaty Land Entitlement Negotiations — Agricultural Benefits Settlement”, came out of the $1.4 million in leftover funds.

“The lawsuit claims the payment, which under the agreement was to be held in trust, was deposited into the numbered company’s account after an “informal” approval by council. Callihoo already receives a “substantial” annual salary, it is alleged, and his contract contains no provision for bonuses or commissions.

“The lawsuit goes on to claim that Callihoo and the numbered company either kept 

funds from the payment or shared them among either all or some of the other defendants.

In either case, the $600,000 payment was not used for the benefit of FM‘FN’ and its members”,
the lawsuit states,
in contravention of the representations made to the FM‘FN’ members, the representations made to the Crown and in contravention of the fiduciary duties of Chief Kreutzer, Councillor Kreutzer, Bates and Callihoo.”

–‘Fort McMurray First Nation councillor files lawsuit, alleging some leaders conspired to take funds’,
JONNY WAKEFIELD, Edmonton Journal, September 14, 2018


Administration building of the Fort McMurray #468 ‘First Nation’, near Anzac, Alta. (SUN MEDIA)

“Several members of the Fort McMurray #468 ‘First Nation’ (FM‘FN’) {a ‘nation’ of 824 people} are being sued for misusing government funding…

“The lawsuit claims that Callihoo delivered an invoice to the FM‘FN’ council for $600,000 that was allegedly approved by Chief Kreutzer, councillor Kreutzer and former councilor Bates.

“Allegedly, this money was shared among the defendants and used for their own benefit…

“When Whalen began to ask questions on the finances, she claims her access to the FM‘FN’ records and database were taken away…”

–‘’Fort McMurray #468 First Nation being sued for allegedly misusing government funds,
MELANIE WALSH, My McMurray, Sept. 20, 2018


See also:
Stop The Fraud!’ (Tribal Transparency):
“…we refuse to accept that Canada can demand accountability from us…”

Keep The Accountability!’ (Transparency Act):
“Once all is said and done, there’s an awful lot of money, aimed at improving the collective lives of ‘First Nations’ people, that’s being eaten up by high-paid and self-righteous leadership.”
“Our leadership has no need for huge payouts while their people struggle to get by. And it’s especially angering when they take the money and still talk about honoring our traditions.
“So why not open the books on band management? Why not allow Canadians and their own people to see how much they are paid, how much they ring up on expenses, and how the fiscal dollars directed toward the community are divided and spent?”
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Mail to: endracebasedlawpetition@gmail.com


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