Fort Liard votes for chief and council Monday amid much controversy

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ACHO DENE KOE/FORT LIARD – Acho Dene Koe First Nation members head to the polls May 15 to select a chief and council, capping a contentious election.
Gene Hope, Cathy Kotchea, Frank Kotchea Sr. and Herbie Berreault were running for chief while 16 were running for five council seats.
Among the council candidates was Harry Deneron, who was suspended as chief earlier this year.
More than 500 members were eligible to vote.
In the run up to the vote, Fort Liard RCMP received several complaints, including an apparent arson attempt, threats and a break and entre at a business.
Police have charged a youth with break and enter and arson. The youth cannot be named.
As well, a 19-year-old from Fort Liard was charged with with break and enter and arson and an 18-year-old from Fort Liard was charged with arson.
A CBC report quoting candidates linked several of the cases to the election, though RCMP would not confirm a connection.
RCMP civilian spokesperson Marie York-Condon stated “the events were isolated” and investigations are ongoing.
A complaint of uttering threats, she stated, was investigated but no charges were laid.