2 Men Sentenced To MASSIVE Welfare Fraud – Notice The Shocking Thing They Have In Common

2 Men Sentenced To MASSIVE Welfare Fraud – Notice The Shocking Thing They Have In Common


2 Men Sentenced To MASSIVE Welfare Fraud – Notice
The Shocking Thing They Have In Common Two Middle Eastern brothers who were accused
of a massive welfare fraud scheme at a Portland grocery store in 2016 have now been sentenced
to federal prison. 41-year-old Ali Ratib Daham, of Westbrook,
pleaded guilty in November to conspiracy to defraud the United States government, money
laundering and theft of government funds, he was sentenced to three years Monday. And his brother, 23-year-old Abdulkareem Daham,
was sentenced to two years after being convicted of conspiracy to defraud the U.S. during a
jury trial. Reports say the two brothers allegedly traded
$1.4 million in federal food benefits for cash. Federal agents raided the Ahram Halal Market
back in 2016 after being tipped off about unusually high sales at the establishment
involving food stamps. Prosecutors then confirmed the brothers allowed
customers to exchange food assistance benefits for cash at a discounted rate from June 2011
through April 2016. That’s 5 years of fraud. A federal prosecutor called the scheme “one
of the largest, if not the largest, fraud cases involving [Supplemental Nutrition Assistance
Program] benefits in [Maine].” Here is more on this story via The New York
Daily News: “PORTLAND, Maine — Two brothers accused
of a massive welfare fraud scheme at a Portland grocery store have been sentenced to federal
prison. The Bangor Daily News reports that 41-year-old
Ali Ratib Daham of Westbrook pleaded guilty in November to conspiracy to defraud the United
States government, money laundering and theft of government funds. He was sentenced to three years on Monday. He was sentenced to three years in prison
for the $1.4 million scam, according to the Bangor Daily News. A federal prosecutor called the case “one
of the largest, if not the largest, fraud cases involving (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance
Program) benefits in (Maine),” the Bangor Daily News reported. His brother 23-year-old Abdulkareem Daham
was sentenced to two years after being convicted of conspiracy to defraud the U.S. during a
jury trial. Federal agents raided Ahram Halal Market in
2016 after being tipped off of unusually high sales at the market coming from food stamps. Prosecutors said the brothers had allowed
customers to exchange food assistance benefits for cash at a discounted rate from June 2011
through April 2016. The older brother will have to cough up $1.4
million in restitution, while the younger brother was ordered to pay $955,000, the Bangor
Daily News reported.” The Dahams are Iraqi natives who fled the
country in the mid-2000s during Iraqi Freedom and opened the Portland business in 2011. In a statement the older brother said he broke
the law in order to help Portland’s immigrant community, but Assistant U.S. Attorney James
Chapman argued that the welfare-for-cash fraud harmed those immigrants by “providing ammunition
to those who would seek to restrict welfare benefits.” The brothers were also ordered to pay restitution
and sentenced to supervised release following their prison terms. This is just sick. Even though most large-scale welfare fraud
cases seem to involve middle eastern men these days, these two brothers’ case is worse. They commit food stamp fraud in order to enrich
themselves and then they say they did it to help the community? Seems like an argument a drug dealer might
make as to why he sells illegal drugs on the street. Here is more information on another case of
Food Stamp fraud via Angry Patriot: “A massive welfare fraud scheme was unearthed
and ultimately sent 14 people to jail. The criminals who stole from Americans taxpayers
all have one very significant thing in common! The Baltimore area retail store operators
charged with welfare fraud all have Middle Eastern names! The fraud indictment states the retail store
operators received more than $16 million in federal (i.e. taxpayer funded) reimbursements
for food they did not actually sell to the poor, CBS reports. Welfare fraud, commonly referred to as “food
stamp trafficking,” cheats We the People out of our hard-earned money. The USDA Food and Nutrition Service must approve
all the retailers who offer the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly
known as the Food Stamp Program. In Maryland, poor citizens are provided an
electronic “benefit” transfer card, or EBT card, to buy groceries. The card functions like a debit card and is
scanned at an approved store’s checkout. Retailers who participate in the food stamp
program deduct the cash value of the purchase from the consumers’ SNAP balance. The USDA then pays retailers for the purchased
food after sending a bill to the federal government. The Baltimore welfare fraud defendants are
accused of exchanging EBT benefits for cash. The store provides the welfare recipient cash
instead of food with enough leftover for the store to also make a profit. Such schemes are believed to occur in states
around the country. The food stamp recipients who participate
in such schemes are also committing an illegal act and defrauding the American people who
pay for their food. “USDA has a zero tolerance policy on fraud,
and we continue to strengthen our anti-fraud tactics to identify and exclude bad actors. More than any other factor, we know that the
change in the trafficking rate is being driven by the growth in the number of smaller retailers
where trafficking occurs at ten times the rate of larger grocery stores and supermarkets,”
said Kevin Concannon, Agriculture Undersecretary for Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services,
as per USDA. In an effort to avoid getting caught, the
suspects with Middle Eastern names who own the stores had the welfare recipients’ debit
money from the cards in a series of transactions over hours or days, the Department of Justice
said. Some of the store operators allegedly sold
food at substantially reduced prices and then split the federal reimbursement money with
the food stamp participants. “The food stamp program is intended to put
food on the tables of needy recipients, not to put money in the pockets of greedy criminals,”
said United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein. “Honest store owners work hard to earn a
profit by actually selling food, and food producers and distributors also benefit. People who play by the rules deserve to know
that criminals who defraud them will be held accountable.” The welfare fraud defendants face up to 20
years in prison for each count of wire fraud, up to five years behind bars for conspiracy
to commit food stamp fraud and wire fraud, and a maximum of five years in jail for food
stamp fraud.”

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