$609,398 Worth of Food Stamps Redeemed for Cologne, Cigarettes

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More than $600,000 worth of food stamp benefits were redeemed for cologne, cigarettes, and calling cards from a convenience store in St. Louis, Mo.

Ebraheem Maki Naif pled guilty last week to a four-year scheme where he redeemed nearly $2 million in benefits at his store Gravois Discount Smokes. Naif admitted that the benefits often were not exchanged for food.

"In his plea, Naif admitted that he conducted illegal food stamp transactions and allowed customers to purchase merchandise such as cigarettes, cologne, calling cards, as well as receiving cash back for food stamp sales," according to the Eastern District of Missouri U.S. State Attorney’s Office. "Naif admitted that due to his illegal food stamp sales he caused losses of at least $609,398 in 2011. Naif also agreed to forfeit $30,765 and a vehicle seized from him during the investigation."

Naif faces up to 10 years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000 and will be sentenced on Aug. 11.

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