88 Indicted In WIC And Food Stamp Fraud - WJBF-TV ABC 6 Augusta-Aiken

88 Indicted In WIC And Food Stamp Fraud

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CHATHAM COUNTY, GA - Eighty-eight men and women have been indicted for their alleged roles in a massive fraud scheme involving federal food assistance benefits. Fifty- four of those indicted are accused of opening around a dozen phony grocery stores and through them buying recipients WIC and food stamp benefits - paying pennies on the dollar in cash.

The indictment alleges the purchasers would then redeem the full value of the benefits. Authorities say the fraud, which occurred in a number of communities across the state, amounted to over 18-million dollars.  Some of those who allegedly sold their benefits have also been charged.  Seventy of the 88 defendants have been taken into custody.  The stores - including one in Savannah and one in Garden City - have been shut down.

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