2 found guilty of buying tons of cheese, beans, etc. in connection with a food stamp fraud

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BROWNSVILLE, Texas (KVEO) — Two Texas women have been convicted of food stamp fraud involving $1.2 million in purchases.

An investigation revealed that Ana Rioja and Maria Consuelo de Ureno, along with other co-conspirators, exchanged benefits from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program for cash, according to a statement from the office of U.S. Attorney Jennifer B. .Lowery.

The SNAP perks were then used by Ureno and other Sam’s Club accomplices, according to the statement.

Officials said they made 715 fraudulent transactions related to SNAP benefits from 83 people.

Ureno’s food purchases totaled approximately 49.1 tons of American cheese slices, 22.3 tons of pinto beans, 1.6 tons of Folger coffee, 1.4 tons of instant mashed potatoes and more than 5,000 gallons of mayonnaise.

It would then sell to a partner and the goods would be transported to Mexico, according to the statement.

Officials said Rioja and Ureno’s $1.2 million in fraudulent transactions took place between September 2014 and August 2019.

Rioja faces two and a half years in prison, followed by a year of probation, according to the press release.

Ureno faces three years in prison, followed by three years of probation, Lowery’s office said.

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