Skip to comments.New Immigrants Masters at Food Stamp Fraud
Posted on 11/28/2002 11:02:49 AM PST by Sparta
After hed gone 90 days without payment, my law firm informed Shihad that we could do no more on his case until he made a payment. He pulled a wad of food stamps our of his wallet and said, "Give me some time to sell these."
Shihad, whod won his asylum case a few months earlier, might have been eligible for food stamps, but he wasn't eligible to sell them. No one is. It's a crime. "Shihad," I said, "I'm withdrawing. You're trying to pay me with the proceeds of a crime."
The commonness of food stamp fraud among America's new immigrants is staggering. Many recent immigrants do not even understand that selling food stamps is a crime, representing, as they do, a form of individualized assistance. Most look at food stamps as just one more thing to barter, so for between 10 and 80 cents on the dollar, they are converted to cash. Never mind that the food stamp was invented to prevent public assistance, formerly given in cash, from being frittered away on non-food items.
How much money is lost each year to food stamp fraud? About $30 million, according to the best estimate provided by the Washington Department of Social and Health Services. But recent immigrants are not just selling the food stamps they receive, they profit from it, too.
Large scale food stamp fraud came to light in an explosive way in 1996, when authorities in Ohio discovered that a Jordanian man and his uncle had deposited $24 million in purchased food stamps in the bank accounts associated with their chain of food and video stores. Just before authorities descended on them with arrest warrants, they deeded their property over to their wives, which included $300,000 homes, and fled to Jordan.
More recently, food stamp fraud has been refined by "asylees" -- asylum seekers -- fleeing Somalia, where rampant starvation serves as the basis of those asylum claims. Asylees are one of a very small number of immigrant groups who are normally eligible for food stamps. Last year, according to documents filed by the U.S. Attorney's Office with the District Court in Seattle, Wash., a ring of Somali couples based in Washington leveraged their skills into a multi-layered public assistance fraud that even involved cash payments from the government. One of the couples netted $40,000 in food stamp fraud alone. Be comforted that the United States was not their only victim. The ring claimed residences on both sides of the border, and Canada, too, was taken for many tens of thousands of dollars.
Food stamp fraud has taken on more sinister dimensions within the last year and a half. Last autumn, the FBI determined that the Somali asylee community in Seattle, set with food stamps and other forms of public assistance, was targeted by the Al-Barakaat Wire Transfer company, a wire transfer and hawala banking outfit with known connections to Al Qaeda. Al-Barakaat set up a storefront in Seattle and immediately went to work selling Qat, a mild narcotic popular with Somalis, and converting food stamps to money for Somalis to send back to their relatives in Somalia. The FBI believes Al-Barakaat skimmed tens of millions of dollars off of the proceeds of these two activities, and funneled it directly to Al Qaeda.
According to the testimony provided by New York City detectives to a U.S. Senate subcommittee in connection with the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, corporate America has been victimized by precisely the same dynamic with coupon fraud, unwittingly funding terrorism by as much as $125 million annually.
Financial relationships of trust -- applications for public assistance that require the truthful disclosure of income information, a store's capacity to deposit for payment only those food stamps that have actually been exchanged for food or coupons that have been presented in connection with the actual sale of a consumer item -- are often completely alien to new immigrants. Many new immigrants have told me that they simply cannot believe that the government trusts them to honestly provide their income information on a food stamp application.
America is entirely too loose with its money, and its new immigrants know it. As recent raids and prosecutions have shown, greater oversight of programs like the one that makes food stamps readily available to new immigrants is crucial. A week after I told Shihad that I'd filed to withdraw from his case, he returned to get a copy of his file. He'd been able to sell the food stamps, he told me, and had received enough to retain a new lawyer.
Is this what is known as an "unintended consequence"?
Oh Puleeze! Since when did the legal profession have an actual repugnance about being paid with the proceeds of a crime? This article on immigrant lawlessness may be otherwise factual, but I find the quoted statement of the attorney / author to be fantasy.
The lawyer took the money anyway. He just told "Shihad" not to inform the attorney of the money's origin.
This figure of $30 million sounds accurate if we are simply talking about the state of Washington. This figure sounds way too low to be how much money goes to fraudulent use of food stamps across the country.
BTW, I am for controlled immigration and having open borders for commerce between US citizens and people abroad with which they want to do business. I am against mass immigration of people from third world countries who come here and get handouts from the state. If you want to come to the US, you should show that you have skills to get a job and/or have sponsors (like family members) who will support you if don't make it economically right away. No immigrant should be given social welfare of any kind. The US needs immigrants for a growing population and economic growth and development. That being said, the US should encourage countries around the world to reform their governments such that peoples around the world can thrive in their native lands, then there would be much less pressure on developed countries like the US to take on welfare-needing immigrants who come here and steal from American taxpayers.
We need to deal with the politicians and bureaucrats who let this kind of thing happen too. Tar and feathers?
Well, I've been doing a lot of thinking about the illegal aliens and the politicians whining about not having enough money, continually wanting to raise our taxes as a solution to the budget problems. Washington is sending feelers out to see if we will riot over an amnesty.
This just might be a solution. See if you like it.
Educate a couple of hundred young energetic people to an idea like this one. Youngsters who feel American Patriotism is a finer character asset than national Diversity is. Yes, us patriots do obey the laws.
Then these young people would need to go face to face with the residents of your lightly populated rural county and explaining how it would work and benefit them, their kids, and their grandkids. Have a website that would explain just why this is being done. Explain the costs to each individual community because of the illegal alien residency and immigration.
It is obvious that INS and the State Dept are corrupt. Attempting to correct the corruption is the wrong way to fix the problem. Rounding up the illegals and removing them will fix the problem!!!
Get your local population educated to the idea of electing a Sheriff who will go face to face with the Federal government. He is going to need legal advice on how to do all of this. Ideally you would want local attorneys or judges to provide this advice. Hey, before you run off...the local attorneys and judges have kids and grandkids too.
Sheriffs are the top LEO in each County. They have the authority to demand that the Feds call ahead and ask to come into your County to enforce Federal laws. Check your State Constitution if you don't believe me.
Now getting the Sheriff and County officials to go along with it, is of course another subject. Just maybe you might be able to find someone who thinks as I do, that illegal aliens are parasites in America, and they would also spread the idea amongst the citizens of your County. Then the citizens could write a petition to force the Council and Sheriff to follow their instructions.
If you have a Sheriff and local County officials of a lightly populated County with a budget deficit and the abnormal high taxes who will declare that all illegal aliens from every nation will be arrested and removed from the County in 30, 60 or 90 days the program is on it's way.
All assets not removed from the County must be assigned by the illegal alien to be sold with registered agents or they will be seized by the Sheriff and sold. These funds will be divided between the Sheriffs Office and the County budget offices for expenses.
All people employing illegal aliens will also be arrested and fined. Perhaps $5000 per employee. This would prompt employers to demand that their employees bring in birth certificates, etc. I think there is a federal law forbidding this, I'm not sure. But so what? If they won't protect America then we must do it. This also keeps the government out of our personal records any more than necessary.
The hiring of non citizens that have entered the US legally with the legal assistance of Immigration and Naturalization Services will of course be encouraged. Only the hiring of illegal aliens will be reason for arrest and stiff fines. It is already against the law to hire an illegal alien. These people have already broken too many of our laws for us to continue to turn our heads.
Perhaps ads could be placed in the newspapers of the surrounding counties to obtain legal workers for the farm, ranch, gas station and local K-Mart to replace the ones who are leaving. A local 800 number could be updated daily with jobs available in your County.
All people giving aid or care to illegal aliens would also be arrested and fined. This would include all illegal aliens who are family members of legal aliens. I would imagine this would gather up quite a few people who have overstayed their visitors pass.
This will result in no or very few illegal aliens going to the local hospitals for medical attention. The hospital will start making money again instead of heading into bankruptcy. Just imagine what the result would be if prices dropped!
This will also bring welfare for illegal aliens to a screeching halt. This alone will do much for your local budget, maintaining or even drop taxes.
School districts would require much less money because the new residents in the county would certainly be more able to speak English. I think schools already check for birth certificates and medical history. (This maybe a good place for the sheriff to start.)
Imagine what that would do to surrounding Counties with similar budget deficits. Would the residents agree to more taxes or would they say get the lawbreakers out of here?
Do you think it might convince the State officials when enough Counties have adopted these measures that we citizens are serious in our desire to protect our communities from being over run by illegal aliens? Would this prompt them to follow our guidance and issue state laws that demand law enforcement agencies to enforce ALL the laws or their budgets get cut?
I think half a dozen community residents that are involved in the legal system and the business community could work out what to do to make an idea similar to this work in your community.
For the legal minded folks I have included a statement from one of the cases that made it through the Supreme Court. Unless there are State laws forbidding such actions as I have suggested, I think everything legally is above the table. A local judge could give the Sheriff advice on how to handle the little tweak of the laws.
The federal Gov't may neither issue directives requiring the States to address particular problems, nor command State' officers, or those of their political subdivisions, to administer or enforce a federal regulatory program. It matters not whether policy making is involved, and no case by case weighing of the burdens or benefits is necessary; such commands are fundamentally incompatible with our constitutional system of dual sovereignty.
Justice Antonin Scalia, Mack vs US., June 27, 1997
The way I see it is that given the opportunity and enough notice to move their families safely, the illegal aliens would pack up and leave rather than fight a Sheriff who is broadcasting that just because the Feds aren't going to enforce the immigration laws doesn't mean he isn't.
Employers would rather make a company policy that all employees must prove that they are American citizens or in the United States legally than be fined $5000 per employee for supporting open border policy.
Give employers a chance to advertise for critical employees who are currently illegal aliens so their businesses don't suffer a drastic skill shortage.
Just as an add on, I imagine that the local crime rates would be continually dropping until it again reached an acceptable level.
Surrounding rural counties would surely catch on quickly to the benefits and start similar programs. All it would take is one newspaper article about their city council needing money for some more public services. There is much more rural county land in the US than cities in county land, that's why I am promoting a rural county to start with.
The residents are more apt to be on a handshake basis with their elected official than residents of large cities are. I think that it wouldn't take too long before cities would simply not be able to afford to support all the illegals who are on taxpayer paid benefits. Consequently, like it or not they would have to fall in line.
I have no idea how fast an idea such as this would spread and actually take firm hold causing neighboring state legislators to look at the idea BEFORE their state was swamped with illegal aliens and the taxpayers rose up demanding immediate solutions. The crime rate amongst illegals is very high as it is. A plan such a this could send it through the ceiling, so caution would be advised on initiating it in a city. Vandalism and riots would probably occur in some areas, so the Governor would need to be ready with the State National Guard Units.
This could be dangerous because it could foster hate and anger. Too much anger would result in radicals bringing out their guns chasing the illegals out of their neighborhoods. We have seen gang wars and the resulting violence, this could be worse. So, it will have to be a slow, calm, well organized plan in each county!
Our intention is to bring the population of our neighborhoods into patriotic, law abiding folks not to be ravaged by foreigners who have nowhere to go. Eventually, I can see where states would have to cough up the funds and or transportation for the people to get back to Norway, Brazil, Australia, Japan and China.
The first States to do this emigration plan will encounter the least expenses. Of course I would expect it to happen, if it ever does, in Western States.
If we continue to allow to let the Feds handle it, they will continue to dilly dally around like they been doing and the problem will never be solved. So, the way I see this, the STATES are going to have to stand up after too many years on our knees to the self promoting, egotistical big shots in the Federal Legislature and the Federal Agencies. We need to show them that we'll fix the problem ourselves. Imagine if our citizens brought a halt to Agenda 21, that would set the United Nations on its rear end!!
Notice the direction of travel in this definition.
\Em`i*gra"tion\, n. [L. emigratio: cf. F. ['e]migration.] 1. The act of emigrating; removal from one country or state to another, for the purpose of residence, as from Europe to America, or, in America, from the Atlantic States to the Western.
Lets change the worlds idea of where to emigrate from and to! We have given education and work experience to millions of illegal aliens. Now lets give them a chance to see if they can do it for themselves back home!!!
If you think this might work, phone some local friends to see what they think of it.
Why not email other friends with this idea and see if we can't get it started. Of course there will surely need to be modifications to initialize it and perhaps different ideas to promote it. Each County is slightly different and we don't want extreme radicals promoting it or else it will surely sink into oblivion.
Here's another piece to look at. http://www.fairus.org/html/04176912.htm
We need more Muslim criminals that hate us to meet our United Nation's quota.
Only $30 million??? I'd honestly guess thats its at least more like $600 Million. That $30 Million sounds like a pittance and a drop in the bucket imho.