Waukegan grocer gets 2 1/2 years for food stamp fraud; no deportation mentioned

This is an update of a story we posted previously, here and here.  It’s the one that made me laugh so much because when the feds busted them the wife put hundreds of thousands of dollars in a suitcase, grabbed her mom and tried to make a run for it.

Khaled and Fatima Saleh who own Sun (aka Sunset) Food Market, located at 1501 Sunset Ave. in Waukegan, were found guilty of food stamp fraud. Note that the store name has been altered. | Ryan Pagelow~Sun-Times Media

Here is the sentencing news from last week:

CHICAGO (NBC) — An Illinois grocer was sentenced to two-and-a-half years in federal prison Monday for defrauding government and nutrition programs.

Khaled Saleh, 48, the owner of Sunset Food Market in Waukegan was charged with illegally exchanging cash with customers using food stamp cards and nutrition coupons during an undercover investigation.

Saleh was sentenced to 30 months in prison by U.S. District Judge Charles Norgle.

Saleh, along with his wife, Fatima Saleh, 37, acquired more than $844,000 by paying customers approximately half the value in cash for goods purchased at other stores using their benefits.

They then re-sold the same items in their store at a substantially higher price.


The couple was arrested in May 2011 and both pleaded guilty last August to conspiracy to defraud government programs.

The government forfeited $391,616 in cash and bank account funds that were seized from the Salehs, and Khaled Saleh was ordered to pay $453,013 in restitution for the remaining balance.

Sentencing for Fatima Saleh has been postponed to March 22.

Then this is from the original US Attorneys Office Press Release from 2011:

After the search of the store, Fatima Saleh went to her apartment and agents observed her leaving a short time later with a suitcase and her mother.

After giving consent to search the suitcase, agents found more than $350,000 cash and more than 800 coupon vouchers for the Women, Infants and Children Program (WIC)*, a supplemental food program to provide a more nutritious diet to low-income infants, young children and pregnant and post-partum women.

Agents later discovered an additional $25,000 cash in the couple’s apartment.

The indictment seeks forfeiture of approximately $377,000 seized on April 26, as well as more than $14,500 seized from Sunset Food’s bank account.

Don’t you think this story is interesting enough to make the national news especially as wasteful government spending is the topic of the day—fat chance!—the Saleh’s are likely members in good standing of the Religion of Peace and CAIR would be on the news outlet like white on rice.

LOL! These must be some of the immigrants ‘finding their way’ to smaller US cities to set up business that Professor Kotkin admires.

* Does this mean 800 people sold her their WIC cards???   Note to refugees (70% of whom are using food stamps):  Do not sell your benefits, it is as much against the law as buying them!

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