Bessemer store owner pleads guilty to $5M in food stamp fraud, other financial crimes

Bessemer store owner pleads guilty to $5M in food stamp fraud, other financial crimes

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - A Bessemer grocery store owner has plead guilty to several financial crimes with damaged of $5 million, according to the U.S. Attorney for the Norther District of Alabama.

Authorities say Hasan F. Ahmed, 50, owned and operated Associated Discount Foods on 9th Street South in Bessemer.

They add that Hasan faces jail time for defrauding the food stamp program of more than $5 million, illegally structuring cash transactions and laundering money to hide the illegal profits and evading federal income taxes.

Hasan would illegally swap food stamps for cash, at a rate lower than the food stamp's face value, and allow customers to buy ineligible items with their SNAP benefits at a higher markup.

He attempted to hide his increase in profits by lying on his 2013 federal income tax return and even opened a checking account in a relative's name to help illegally restructure and launder the payments.

The jail time and fines for all of these charges totals 35 years and $1,250,000.

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