Criminal Justice News

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Former Secretary-Treasurer of Ponca Tribe Sentenced for Embezzlement from Tribe

OKLAHOMA CITY—Cherly L. Roughface, 50, of Ponca City, Oklahoma, was sentenced by United States District Judge Joe Heaton to serve 24 months’ probation, including 180 days of home confinement with electronic monitoring, for embezzlement from the Ponca Tribe of Oklahoma, announced Sanford C. Coats, United States Attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma. Judge Heaton also ordered that Roughface serve 104 hours of community service and pay $19,427.18 in restitution to the Ponca Tribe.

Roughface was the secretary-treasurer of the Ponca Tribe who, on October 25, 2007, wrote a check to herself from the tribal account in the amount of $2,500 for which there was no authorization or legitimate expense of the tribe. Roughface pled guilty to the embezzlement in November of last year.

In a companion case, the Ponca Tribe’s former accountant, Thomasine Arkeketa, 57, from Ponca City, Oklahoma, was sentenced last November to serve 24 months’ probation for embezzling funds from the Ponca Tribe of Oklahoma. Atkeketa was ordered to pay restitution to the tribe in the amount of $27,125.89.

These cases were the result of an investigation conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Indian Affairs. The cased were prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Teresa Black.

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