AP NEWS

Holyoke man arrested in food stamp fraud scheme

April 10, 2019

HOLYOKE, Mass. (AP) — Massachusetts State Police have arrested a man they say purchased tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of food with fraudulently obtained food stamps, and gave it to his wife to serve to customers in her restaurant.

Police say they arrested 55-year-old Jose Baez at the Holyoke restaurant on Wednesday morning after a yearlong investigation. He faces several charges including money laundering, food stamp trafficking, and larceny.

Police say he used EBT cards he purchased at cents on the dollar to make nearly daily purchases at two Springfield food distributors. He then allegedly brought the food to El Rincon Boricua Restaurant, where the food was used in preparation of meals served to restaurant customers.

Baez faces arraignment Wednesday. The restaurant’s phone was disconnected. It’s not clear if he has a lawyer.