GEORGIA–A scheme involving $18 million worth of food stamps has landed a lot of people in hot water. The DOJ is calling it “one of the largest federal food program frauds ever”, and has filed federal charges against 88 people.
The plot involved the illegal purchase of WIC and food stamp benefits from low-income families. Grocery stores across Georgia were in on the scheme, and bought the food stamps for a fraction of their value.
54 defendants are being charged with one count each of mail and wire fraud conspiracy, and face up to 20 years in prison if convicted.
The remaining 34 defendants were charged separately, allegedly for selling more than $1,000 worth of WIC and food stamps for cash.
The government is seeking reparations by seizing the sizable assets some of the defendants had acquired, including a 2008 Land Rover and Mercedes-Benz.