Mille Lacs Ojibwe file action against City of Brainerd to recover money

Brainerd, Minnesota (AP) August 2010

The Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe has taken legal action against the City of Brainerd over a firefighter who pleaded guilty to embezzling $660,000 from the tribe.

The Ojibwe say their losses actually exceeded $1.4 million. They’re seeking an injunction against the city if the city decides to settle a separate claim with Eric Makowski-Budrow.

The Brainerd Daily Dispatch says Makowski-Budrow remains a paid on-call Brainerd firefighter. After he pleaded guilty to the embezzlement, he offered to release the city from legal claims he had filed against it in return for $50,000.

In court documents filed by the tribe, the Ojibwe say any money the city might plan to pay him should go to them instead.

The city council has not voted on taking any action in the case.