Cleveland: (Another) doozy of a food stamp fraud bust

This is one more in my long list of immigrant-run convenience store food stamp fraud stories.  For new readers, following these scams is a side interest of mine and since no one (that I know of) is writing a blog dedicated to stories about immigrants scamming the US taxpayer (there are many more such frauds and ‘medicare/medicaid’ fraud is on the rise), I’ll keep posting some here.

EBT Nation! Our standard graphic when we can’t find a photo of the perps. If anyone sees a mugshot of Mohammad D. Mohammad send it my way! Thanks!

I don’t even post all of the cases that arrive in my alerts.  I try to focus on stories that have an extra-added angle beyond the usual EBT card trafficking.  This one has a high “Mohammad coefficient” in addition to the allegedly brazen scam these guys were running.

There are many reports of this indictment, but some don’t tell the larger story.  This Patch report does.

First be sure to re-visit my post of a couple of weeks ago about how David Lubell and ‘Welcoming America’ has just kicked-off its Cleveland campaign to convince residents that diversity is beautiful and they need to embrace more of it!  Entrepreneurial immigrants will save the city from economic ruin, they say.

Here is the Patch story on the $780,000 rip-off of the taxpayer (as is the usual case, no mention of the immigration status or how these perps got into the US in the first place):

Three men — including a store owner from Strongsville (a Cleveland suburb)— were indicted Wednesday for an alleged decade-long conspiracy to defraud the food stamp and Women, Infants and Children programs out of more than $780,000 by trading the vouchers for cash and restricted items like beer and cigarettes, said Steven M. Dettelbach, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio.

Ahmad (“Tony”) Damra, 31, of Macedonia, his brother, Mahmoud (“Moe”) Damrah, 26, of Cleveland, and Mohammad D. Mohammad, 41, of Strongsville,  were each indicted on one count of conspiracy to commit food stamp fraud, three counts of food stamp fraud and unlawful redemption of food stamps, and one count of WIC fraud.

The incidents allegedly took place at Mohammad’s store in Cleveland.

Used Mamma to get food stamp license!   Prior conviction for “aggravated arson” went unnoticed by officials until now?  (Left out of the story in many of the reports).

The indictment charges that between 2002 and 2011, the three men and others defrauded the WIC and food stamp program out of more than $780,000 at the East 143rd Food Market, l3249 East 143rd Street in Cleveland, which is owned, operated and managed by Mohammad.

Mohammad obtained a food stamp license in 1997, which, except for a two-year period beginning in September 1998, remained in effect through 2004, according to the indictment.

In 2005, he obtained a food stamp license for the market using the business Rashiqa, Inc., which listed Mohammad’s mother as president. He used his mother’s name because he had a prior conviction for aggravated arson, which precluded him from getting the license himself, the document said.

Also in 2005, Mohammad obtained a WIC program authorization under Rashiqa, Inc.


The investigation revealed that the defendants used their business to exchange customer food stamps and WIC coupons for cash and other unauthorized items, including beer and cigarettes.

The men also purchased customer food stamp cards and used them at other grocery locations to purchase inventory for the market and for their own personal use, the indictment says.

Here is another version of this latest bust in Cleveland, at the Plain Dealer, where the reporter summarized the case, just two weeks ago of the bust involving brothers Saed “Sam” Wahdan, 41, and Maher “Mario” Wahdan, 42, and Nidal Jaber, 45, but doesn’t mention that they scammed you of $2 million!

Readers, I’ve been following these busts for over five years and have never seen any mainstream news outlet attempt to get to the root of how all of these immigrant ‘entrepreneurs’ got into the country, bought stores and knew how to set up these scams.  Too politically incorrect I assume to make any connections?

If there are any real investigative reporters out there—click here for dozens and dozens of similar stories (I’ve done much of your research already!).

Germany (again!): Is “sugar on the table” drawing Chechens?

German officials are scratching their heads about why the recent large numbers of Russians from Chechnya (homeland of the Boston Bombers) are coming to Germany seeking asylum.  See also “tensions rising” in German cities.

I was looking for a map that shows how far Chechnya is from Germany and this is the best I could find. If the ‘asylum-seekers’ went by land, and were truly desperate asylum-seekers, they would have traveled through many “safe” countries where they should have legally sought asylum BEFORE arriving in Germany (west of the circled Czech Republic).

From the BBC:

The number of people seeking political asylum in Germany has soared, and the biggest group by far was from Russia.

In the first half of this year, just over 43,000 refugees applied to stay – that is 86% more than in the same period in 2012.

It is the highest level since 1999, when people fled Serbia’s Kosovo war.

Many this year came from Russia’s Chechnya region, they told German officials. Violence and human rights abuses plague Chechnya.

German Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich said that “in 2012, by far the most asylum seekers in the European Union came to Germany, and in the first half of 2013 we saw almost a doubling of applications.

“The number of asylum seekers in the first half of 2013 was the greatest since the same period in 1999.”

According to the interior ministry, 9,957 people came from Russia and claimed political asylum in Germany, compared with 4,517 from Syria and 3,448 from Afghanistan.  [I’m sure Putin is thrilled to be relieved of them!—ed]

Perplexed analysts!

The figures for refugees from Chechnya are perplexing analysts because there has not been a perceptible deterioration of the situation there. No worsening of a vicious war has been reported in the North Caucasus republic.

Germany put the “sugar on the table!”   (A commenter used that phrase recently and I love it!)

Seems that a logical explanation is that Germany offers asylum-seekers/refugees more taxpayer-funded goodies, and that is the draw.  However, for Muslims it’s a twofer, they can fulfill their Muslim duty (Al-Hijra) by helping to build the Islamic caliphate and live fairly well doing it!

The BBC continues:

One theory being mooted in ministries to explain the surge is that, exactly a year ago, Germany’s highest court ruled that asylum seekers waiting for their applications to be processed should receive the same social benefits as Germans.

That led to higher payments for food and accommodation, as the different regions of Germany implemented the court’s strictures.

Svetlana Gannushkina, a leading human rights activist in Russia, says Chechens appear to have been motivated by rumours that Germany “has opened its doors to Chechens”.

In an e-mail to the BBC, she said “a rumour is circulating that in Germany each family is given a parcel of land and money to build a house”.

Update August 18th:  A reader sent us this story from Der Spiegel about the “rumor” and the ramifications.  People are desperate to leave Chechnya now being ruled by hard-line Islamists according to this story.

All of our posts on Germany and its refugee/asylum/illegal alien problems are here.