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Retired Michigan priest arrested in Grand Forks on embezzlement charges

David Fisher

A Michigan priest who retired to Grand Forks is in the process of being extradited to his home state after being charged with embezzling hundreds of thousands of dollars from his former church.

Rev. David Ernest Fisher, 70, was arrested at his Grand Forks home on March 11 on an extradition order from Shiawassee County, Mich.

The Argus-Press newspaper in Ossowo, Mich. reported that Fisher was a pastor at St. Joseph Catholic Church for 23 years. He retired in 2015. The newspaper reported that Fisher faces seven counts of embezzlement, including one count of embezzling $100,000 or more, a crime punishable by 20 years in prison.

"Following the retirement of Rev. David Fisher from the pastorate of St. Joseph Parish in Owosso, financial irregularities came to light," the Catholic Diocese of Lansing, Mich. said in a press release. "These were promptly reported by the Diocese of Lansing to representatives of law enforcement, who began an investigation. At every point of the process, the diocese, the new pastor of St. Joseph Parish, and his parish staff have fully cooperated with law enforcement."

Michigan State Police told the Argus-Press that they believe Fisher used church money for personal use between 2009 and 2015.

Fisher made his initial appearance in Grand Forks District Court on March 14, court records show. He is out on bond awaiting an extradition hearing on March 31.

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