GREAT FALLS — Three former employees of the Blackfeet Head Start program have pleaded not guilty to charges alleging they falsified overtime claims to steal money from the federally funded program.

A federal indictment alleges acting director Ethyl Lee Grant, health manager Carol Hall Bird and custodian Allan Shane Goss were among several people who claimed more than 7,800 hours in overtime and received $232,000 in overpayments between April 2013 and July 2014.

All three pleaded not guilty Wednesday to theft from a tribal government receiving federal funding and wire fraud. Their trial is set for Jan. 8, 2018, before U.S. District Judge Brian Morris in Great Falls.

Prosecutors are seeking restitution of $28,500 from Grant, nearly $17,000 from Goss, and $14,800 from Bird.

The indictment says other defendants will be named later.

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