USDA: More than 35,000 retailers engaged in food stamp fraud over 3-year period

USDA: More than 35,000 retailers engaged in food stamp fraud over 3-year period

[Ed. – What a surprise.  The fraud in question is buying the value on a card’s balance for cash, meaning the beneficiary can walk away with cash and spend it on anything.]

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has published a report estimating that 35,891 food retailers around the country engaged in food stamp fraud, illegally “trafficking” more than $1 billion in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits annually over the three-year period from 2012 through 2014.

“Retailer trafficking of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits occurs primarily when SNAP recipients sell their benefits for cash to food retailers, often at a discount,” the USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service said in a summary of the report. …

The report, published in September 2017, looked at food stamp trafficking in 2012, 2013 and 2014, estimating that more than $1 billion in SNAP benefits were “trafficked” annually during that time period and that about 11.8 percent of the 303,522 retail stores authorized to accept SNAP benefits over the period were involved in trafficking.

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