Shawnee man arrested on embezzlement charge

Ponca City Now - April 27, 2015 9:02 am

SHAWNEE, Okla. (AP) – A Shawnee man has been arrested for allegedly embezzling over $180,000 from a small business program funded by the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, the largest employer in Pottawatomie County.

Court records show 35-year-old Thomas Bierd was arrested Thursday and faces six federal counts of embezzlement and theft.

An indictment unsealed on Thursday alleges 41-year-old Kristi Bias, a former CPN employee, would issue checks to illegitimate companies controlled by Bierd, who in turn would give her some of the funds.

The indictment says six separate thefts by the two produced checks that totaled about $182,000.

Bierd has posted bail, and his trial date is set for June. It was not immediately clear if Bierd has an attorney.

According to prosecutors, Bias pleaded guilty to related charges in November and is awaiting sentencing.

 

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