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Food stamp fraud investigator charged with extorting stores

October 4, 2018

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — A former Mississippi food stamp fraud investigator is charged with extorting money from convenience store owners who violated regulations.

The criminal charge against 52-year-old Frank Saddler of Ridgeland was filed Thursday in federal court in Jackson.

It’s unclear if Saddler has a lawyer and no court appearance is scheduled. Defendants sometime plead guilty without being indicted under a plea bargain.

Prosecutors say Saddler was a Mississippi Department of Human Services branch director, investigating criminal violations of rules of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. The state administers the federal program.

The charge says Saddler extorted money in 2014 and 2015 from store owners charged with criminal violations.

He faces up to 20 years in prison. Saddler would be required to pay restitution, if convicted, and prosecutors demand he forfeit any gains.

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