A Fort McMurray First Nation 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 (FMFN) Chief Ronald Alfred Kreutzer, CEO Bradley Callihoo, Coun. Ronald Allen Kreutzer, ex-councillor Byron Bates and a numbered company as defendants.
Among other things, Whalen is seeking a court order that $600,000 in allegedly misused funds be repaid to the nation, a court declaration that the defendants “breached their fiduciary duties,” and $100,000 in damages payable to the nation.
Callihoo and Chief Kreutzer declined to comment Wednesday, saying the matter is before the courts. Callihoo said a statement of defence has not been filed.
Statements of claim contain allegations not proven in court.
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.
The Crown offered the settlement on Feb. 2, 2017, the statement of claim says, and members voted to ratify the deal that June.