On March 31, Marysville Police Detectives arrested the property owner of a local mini-mart store located in the 1000 block of State Ave. A search warrant was also served at the business.
The 50 year old Marysville man was booked into the Snohomish County Jail for the offenses of Trafficking in Food Stamps, Unlawful Redemption of Food Stamps, Identity Theft, and Money Laundering.
The man was previously licensed to conduct food stamp transactions in his store but the privilege was revoked by the United States Department of Agriculture in 2006 for food stamp trafficking.
Over the course of several months investigators developed information that the business owner was purchasing Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) cards from patrons. The owner would pay for the EBT card in cash at half of the cards current balance. He would then use the full balance of the cards to purchase goods he would then sell in his store.
While the investigation is ongoing and the final numbers have not been calculated, the fraudulent transactions total in the thousands of dollars.
Detectives seized $14,000 in cash, an EBT card, a computer, financial documents and illegal synthetic marijuana. In addition the Washington State Liquor Control Board confiscated 42 cartons of illegal cigarettes.
A 49 year old Everett man, who also participated in the fraudulent transactions, was also arrested and booked at the Snohomish County Jail.
The search warrant and subsequent arrest are the culmination of an extensive, prolonged investigation. It was a collaborative effort between the Marysville Police Department and the USDA-Office of Inspector General (USDA-OIG).