Crime & Courts

Man charged with embezzling from Kansas Indian tribe

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A Horton man who handled accounting affairs for the Kickapoo Tribe of Kansas was charged Tuesday with embezzling from the organization. Heath A. Hopkins, 45, is accused in a federal indictment of writing unauthorized checks to himself from the tribe’s account while he was employed as an accounting technician, Acting U.S. Attorney Tom Beall said in a statement.

He no longer works in that capacity, Beall said. He was employed by the Kickapoo Tribe Housing Authority at the time.

Hopkins faces one count of theft from an Indian tribal organization. If convicted, he could be ordered to spend up to five years in federal prison, Beall said.

In other indictments Tuesday, 47-year-old Richard A. Lara of Wichita was charged with five counts of bank fraud and 12 counts of misapplication of bank funds for allegedly receiving employment benefits he wasn’t entitled to while working for Security State Bank of Wellington from 2009 to 2014. If convicted he faces up to 30 years in federal prison, Beall said.

Amy Renee Leiker: 316-268-6644, @amyreneeleiker