Stop-n-Steal

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36583220 - shopping with shopping cart in snack department of supermarket

A lot of food stamp fraud occurs at small food markets or other establishments that accept Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits. Perhaps the owners of these establishments figure that their stores are so small that the government will never detect that they are committing fraud. That may have been the reasoning that a father and daughter duo used to rationalize their participation in a SNAP fraud scheme in Missouri.

The father owned and operated a fish market, while his daughter ran a mini-mart by the same name. Together, the two abused the SNAP program by exchanging food stamp benefits for cash and other ineligible items like household goods, alcoholic beverages, tobacco products, cell phones and other non-food items. (The stores both had the name “Stop-N-Go.” Perhaps they should have called it “Stop-N-Steal.”)

Over three years, the father and daughter managed to redeem nearly $550,000 in SNAP benefits at their fish market and mini-mart. (My guess is that investigators compared the amount of benefits the two stores redeemed and determined that the volume of business was out of the ordinary for that area when compared to similar stores.)

The 63-year-old father and his 35-year-old daughter both pleaded guilty to conspiracy and to multiple counts of the unauthorized use of SNAP benefits. The two family members are scheduled to be sentenced.

It’s hard to predict what the sentences will be for these two, but when they face the judge, they’ll be looking at a maximum penalty of five years in prison for each count and fines up to $250,000. Let’s hope the justice system chooses an appropriate punishment, one that will prevent any more stop-n-go fraud.

Source: Today’s “Fraud of the Day” is based on an article entitled, “Father, daughter plead guilty to federal charges involving food stamp fraud,” posted by KFVS12.com on June 22, 2017.

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) – A father and daughter duo have admitted to misusing the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

According to the Department of Justice, Larry White Sr., 63, and his daughter, Erica White, 35, pleaded guilty to multiple counts of unauthorized use of SNAP benefits and conspiracy.

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Larry Benson, Senior Director of Strategic Alliances, LexisNexis Risk Solutions - Government

Larry Benson is responsible for developing strategic partnerships and solutions for the government vertical. His expertise focuses on how government programs are defrauded by criminal groups, and the approaches necessary to prevent them from succeeding.

Mr. Benson has 30 years of experience in sales and business development. Before joining LexisNexis® Risk Solutions, he spent 12 years founding and managing two software technology startups. During the 1990s he spent 10 years as a Regional Director helping to grow a New England-based technology company from 300 employees to 7,000. He started his career with Martin Marietta Aerospace working on laser guided weapons and day/night vision systems.

A sought-after speaker and accomplished writer, Mr. Benson is the principal author of “Fraud of the Day,” a website dedicated to educating government officials about how criminals are defrauding government programs. He has co-authored WTF? Where’s the Fraud? How to Unmask and Stop Identity Fraud’s Drain on Our Government, and Data Personified, How Fraud is Changing the Meaning of Identity.

Benson holds a Bachelor of Science in Physics from Albright College, and earned two graduate degrees – a Master of Business Administration from Florida Institute of Technology, and a Master of Science in Engineering from Lehigh University.