ABERDEEN - A former district chairman of the Sisseton Wahpeton Sioux has been sentenced to 1  1/2 years in prison for embezzling from the Dakotas tribe.

The American News reports that 53-year-old Lloyd LaBelle Jr. also has been ordered to pay nearly $350,000 in restitution together with three other district officials charged in the case.  One of the others has been convicted by a jury and the other two have pleaded guilty.

Authorities say the four officials stole the money between January 2007 and January 2009, often meeting at the tribal casino to issue checks to themselves and immediately cash them.

LaBelle pleaded guilty to a federal felony count of aiding and abetting misapplication of tribal funds.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.