Navajo Nation vice president among group facing fraud charges
Navajo Nation Vice President Ben Shelly, who is running for president, is among a group of tribal officials charged in a major fraud case

Shelly and his running mate Rex Lee Jim, a delegate to the Navajo Nation Council, are being accused of misusing discretionary funds. Shelly is a former council delegate.

Shelly pleaded not guilty in tribal court to charges of fraud, conspiracy and theft, all misdemeanors. "It's very untimely," campaign spokesman Deswood Tome told the Associated Press. "We want to be very open about this and we want the people to know this has taken place—that's important."

So far, 38 people have been charged in the case, which was investigated by Alan Balaran, the former special master in the Indian trust fund lawsuit.

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Navajo VP charged in slush fund investigation (AP 10/21)
Charges filed in probe of Navajo slush funds (AP 10/21)