Fond du Lac aerial view. Photo courtesy Facebook.

Serious charges against a past elected official from Fond du Lac are set for pre-trial.

Napoleon Mercredi has been facing allegations of fraud, theft and breach of trust by a public officer since charges were laid summer of 2015. After more than a dozen court dates over the past year and a half in Fond du Lac and La Ronge, he has been committed to stand trial in Prince Albert.

This relates to charges dating back to Mercredi’s time as chief of Fond du Lac between 2009 and 2011.

When the charges were first laid, RCMP economic crime unit’s Hugh Gordon, lead investigator on the file, told MBC the complaints were brought forward in 2012 by the chief and council who replaced Mercredi after an unsuccessful re-election bid.

Gordon said Mercredi did, as chief, have authority to access band accounts but Gordon said the question is, did he misappropriate funds or put them at risk of misappropriation, and if so, how much?

After a two and a half year investigation, he said the value of these funds “is in the hundreds of thousands, but as to which amount is going to ultimately be the correct amount will have to be decided by a court.”

When contacted about the charges in 2015, Mercredi responded that he was not alone in the authority to spend the band’s money “so therefore I was getting direction from some of the councillors.”

He called the allegations “a political game.”

A trial date has not yet been set.