JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – A former tribal councilmember for the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians was sentenced to 84 months in prison for embezzlement, perjury, and suborning perjury.

Prosecutors said Kevin Joseph Edwards, 51, of the Standing Pine Community, embezzled $12,178.40 from the Tribe by submitting fraudulent travel documents for reimbursement. Edwards was indicted for the embezzlement in February of 2019. 

According to court documents, once indicted on the embezzlement, Edwards was released on bond. While on bond, Edwards possessed a firearm. A petition to revoke his bond was filed in federal court, and during a hearing conducted in the United States Magistrate Court, prosecutors said Edwards committed perjury and convinced another person to commit perjury on his behalf during the hearing.  

Edwards entered a plea of guilty to the embezzlement in February 2021 and later pled guilty to the perjury charges in June 2022.

He was sentenced to a prison term of 84 months, to be followed by a term of 36 months supervised release. Edwards was also ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $12,178.40.