Husband-and-wife duo convicted of conspiracy to commit $3.4 million in food stamp fraud

Dayton (WCPO) — The husband-and-wife duo behind a Findlay Market business that prided itself on family values was convicted Friday of leading a scheme to commit $3.4 million in food stamp fraud over the course of eight years.

Michael and Amanda Jo Busch, who ran Busch’s Country Corner until federal investigators raided it in May 2018, were each convicted on 25 charges, including conspiracy to steal government funds, submitting false claims, SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) fraud and wire fraud.

According to the office of U.S. Attorney Benjamin Glassman, the Busches began exchanging cash for SNAP benefits in 2010. Investigators found that, in the eight years that followed, they recorded an average of 2,167 SNAP transactions each month — more than twice the number conducted by similar businesses in the area.

Altogether, Busch’s processed 195,113 SNAP transactions totaling $5.4 million between 2010 and 2018. Federal agents estimated only about 36 percent were authentic.

Co-conspirator Randall Busch, Michael’s brother, pleaded guilty to 19 counts of SNAP fraud in April and was sentenced to five years probation.

Busch’s is no longer listed on Findlay Market’s roster of vendors, but an archived snapshot of the site from early 2018 describes it as a family business run by high school sweethearts. Its owners wrote they chose Findlay because it is “a constantly interesting place to be.”

Originally Published: 22 JUN 19 13:49 ET

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The-CNN-Wire
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