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December 18, 2017 12:54 PM

Federal Investigation Finds Only Westerhuises Responsible For Fraud

Washington DC

One federal investigation into the Native American education programs in South Dakota has resulted in no charges.

The U.S. Department of Interior Inspector General has issued a report involving Bureau of Indian Education Schools and fraud regarding federal monies.

The OIG finds that the American Indian Institute for Innovation billed more than $100,000 for office space to get BIA funding, even though the tribal school provided the space for free.

The federal report finds that between 2012 and 2014, AIII got more than $750,000 from an educational cooperative formed by two Bureau of Indian Education funded schools

In addition, the Department of Interior Inspector General found that between April 2013 and April 2015, AIII got nearly $450,000 in special education grants from the Bureau of Indian.

But the inspector general finds that only Scott and Nicole Westerhuis were responsible for the fraudulent over billing. No one else was accused in the report.  

According to the report, the OIG ended its investigation "because the responsible subjects are deceased and we did not identify additional subjects."

However, the Department of Interior's investigation into the misuse of federal funds by AIII is complete; there could still be ongoing investigations by other federal agencies, such as the U.S. Department of Education Office of Inspector General.
 
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