New Jersey: Guilty Food Stamp Scammers, Turks, Say they Do Not Have to Pay Restitution

Editor:  As is so often the case, I’ve been busy at Refugee Resettlement Watch as Republican governors are caving to the Open Borders Left and asking the President for MORE refugees this year.  See RRW from time to time if you aren’t already.

One of my favorite scams earlier at RRW, and now at ‘Frauds and Crooks,’ is SNAP scam!  That is when small stores and gas stations (most often owned by ‘new Americans’) traffic in food stamps.  I’ve noticed fewer of them lately. I don’t know if that is because the most egregious cases have already been busted or whether the feds have slowed their investigations.

However, this isn’t about trafficking fraud, but about the couple collecting food stamp benefits while owning several gas stations.  There may also be some Medicaid fraud mixed in, but that isn’t fully explained.

I hope the feds investigated their gas stations to ascertain if they also might be trafficking in food stamps!

BTW, I’ve traveled often through this part of South Jersey and I can say there are many, many foreign-owned and operated convenience stores and gas stations.  Why is that?

 

Mustafa and Rahime Ozturk in court on Monday with their Turkish interpreter that you, the taxpayers, likely paid for as required by a Bill Clinton Executive Order that was never rescinded. I wish someone would do an analysis of what these interpreters are costing county and state taxpayers!

 

From the Daily Journal:

Vineland couple in food stamp case say they don’t have to pay back money

 

BRIDGETON – A Vineland couple charged with taking thousands of dollars in an alleged food stamp scam are rejecting a plea deal, claiming a recent bankruptcy means they don’t have to pay back the money.

The couple, Mustafa Ozturk, 35, and Rahime Ozturk, 38, fraudulently received $26,128 in food stamps over several years while concealing that they owned gas stations in two states from the Cumberland County Division of Social Services, court records show.

They both appeared in Cumberland County Superior Court on Monday.
The couple, who have separate attorneys, were arraigned in November on a 16-count indictment alleging theft, conspiracy, and falsifying records.

At Monday’s hearing before Judge Robert Malestein, county Assistant Prosecutor Shari-Ann Sasu said the state has offered the couple plea deals that would recommend probation instead of prison.

However, she said, the defendants would be required to pay back the county and the Ozturks are refusing.

Send them to jail then!

The Ozturks filed in federal Bankruptcy Court in October 2018 for Chapter 13 protection. The Division of Social Services already had completed its investigation by that time.

The division contacted the Prosecutor’s Office in February 2018 to report suspected Medicaid fraud, according to court records.

[….]

“I believe Mr. Ozturk’s of the position that, if he’s in bankruptcy, he shouldn’t have to pay anything back,” Sasu said. “So, the sticking point really is the money and restitution. I’m thinking a restitution hearing is coming at some point.”

More here.

Sigh…. more of the ‘new American’ entrepreneurs we are being told benefit our economy.

Indian National Ripped off Americans/Others for Millions via Call Center Scam

He was on the run and we tracked him down in Singapore.

If you’ve ever gotten one of those calls where someone tells you they are from the IRS and you owe money, surely you hung up! However thousands of gullible people did not hang up and sent this Indian crook their hard-earned money.

Well one more of the international crooks ripping us off will now be behind bars.

Thanks to reader Charles for tipping me off about this story, here is the US Justice Department news about Hitesh Madhubhai Patel aka Hitesh Hinglaj, 43, of Ahmedabad, India:

(By the way, I like the fact that we are now seeing mention of the nationality of crooks more prominently mentioned sparing us from having to spend time playing the secret decoder ring game with the criminal’s name.)

Indian national convicted of role in call center scam that victimized thousands in the U.S.

HOUSTON – An Indian national has entered a guilty plea for his role in operating and funding India-based call centers which defrauded thousands of victims out of millions of dollars between 2013 and 2016.

Hitesh Madhubhai Patel aka Hitesh Hinglaj, 43, of Ahmedabad, India, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud as well as a general conspiracy to commit identification fraud, access device fraud, money laundering and to impersonate a federal officer or employee.

“Hitesh Patel played a prominent role in this massive, India-based fraud scheme that bilked vulnerable Americans out of millions of dollars,” said Assistant Attorney General Brian Benczkowski of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. “This important resolution would not have occurred without the assistance of our Singaporean colleagues, to whom we extend our deep appreciation.”

Patel and his conspirators perpetrated a complex scheme in which employees from call centers in Ahmedabad, India, impersonated officials from the IRS and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). They also engaged in other telephone call scams designed to defraud victims throughout the United States. U.S. victims were threatened with arrest, imprisonment, fines or deportation if they did not pay alleged monies owed to the government.

An image of a call center at a website that also reported this news entitled: ‘Financial Fraud News’. https://www.financialfraudnews.com/indian-national-convicted-of-role-in-call-center-scam-that-victimized-thousands-in-the-u-s/

Those who fell victim to the scammers were instructed how to provide payment, including by purchasing general purpose reloadable (GPR) cards or wiring money. Upon payment, the call centers would immediately turn to a network of “runners” based in the United States to liquidate and launder the fraudulently-obtained funds.

In his plea, Patel admitted to operating and funding several India-based call centers from which the fraud schemes were perpetrated, including organizational co-defendant call center HGLOBAL. Patel frequently corresponded by email and WhatsApp messaging with co-defendants to exchange credit card numbers, telephone scam scripts, deposit slips, payment information, call center operations information, instructions and bank account information. The scripts included impersonation of IRS, USCIS, Canada Revenue Agency and Australian Tax Office personnel as well as payday loan, U.S. government grant and debt collection fraud schemes.

Patel also received monthly income and expense reports to his personal email from the call centers and used his Indian cell phone number to access GPR cards through automated telephone systems on many occasions.

A co-defendant described Patel as “the top person in India and the boss for whom most of the other defendants worked.” Another co-defendant claimed Patel was arrested in India in 2016, but paid a bribe and was released. Additionally, Patel admitted he was accountable for approximately $25-65 million.

Patel was extradited from Singapore in April 2019 to face charges in this large-scale telefraud and money laundering scheme. Singapore authorities apprehended Patel at the request of the United States pursuant to a provisional arrest warrant in September 2018 after Patel flew there from India.

As I have said before, the President should regularly highlight all of the scams his Justice Department is busting.

Lewiston: African Involved with Death of Maine Man Sentenced to 7 DAYS

Oh brother, no wonder people get so steamed about our ‘new Americans!’

This is an update of a story we followed here at ‘Frauds and Crooks’ but could also have been posted at RRW because some of those involved in the beating death of Donald Giusti are Somali refugees.

Readers who are not also reading RRW should see a recent post on Lewiston here.

I reported the arrest of one of those involved in the gang of rampaging ‘youths’ here in April.

Now this….

From the Press Herald (h/t: Frank):

Lewiston man sentenced to 7 days in jail for role in Donald Giusti’s death

AUBURN — A Lewiston man involved with the 2018 melee near Kennedy Park that left a man dead was sentenced Monday in Androscoggin County Superior Court to seven days in jail and a $300 fine.

No mention of where he is from or how he came to be living in Lewiston.

Pierre Musafiri, 23, was facing a misdemeanor assault charge for kicking Donald Giusti while he lay badly injured on Knox Street after a confrontation between two groups near Kennedy Park on June 12, 2018.

Several members of Giusti’s family sat near the back of the courtroom and watched as Musafiri was sentenced.

Patrick Nickerson, Musafiri’s attorney, told the Giusti family that Musafiri expressed that “he is sorry for what he did, that what he did was a mistake and that he can’t take it back.”

“He told me to express his sorrow for what happened and that he takes responsibility for his conduct,” Nickerson said.

After the sentencing, Musafiri immediately was taken into custody.

Now here is the most important line at the end of the story:

Comments are not available on this story.

Gee, I wonder why?  They don’t want to hear Mainers unload?

Texas: Somali Cleric Arrested on Charges of Sexually Assaulting Children

The first question I have is:  Is he a refugee since the vast majority of Somalis in the US are refugees, but I am seeing no definitive answer on that, so I figured this news would be best reported at ‘Frauds and Crooks’ rather than at my other blog, ‘Refugee Resettlement Watch.’ 

Although let me say that there are many of my RRW stories that could just as easily be reported here especially those stories involving the nine anti-Trump federal refugee contractors masquerading as ‘religious’ non-profits! See today’s post at RRW!

From the Houston Chronicle:

Islamic religious teacher arrested for alleged sex crimes against children

The Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office has arrested an Islamic religious teacher for alleged sex crimes against children. Mohamed Omar Ali, 59, was charged with one count of sexual assault of a child and three counts of sexual indecency of a child following his Jan. 3 arrest.

At a press conference Monday morning, Fort Bend County Sheriff Troy Nehls said that all four victims were children under the age of 14. Ali is a Somalian national who was living in the U.S. illegally, acording to Nehls. The bail for Ali was set at $125,000, but due to his illegal status, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement put a detainer on Ali, and he is being held at the Fort Bend County jail, Nehls said.

Mohamed Omar Ali, 59, is reportedly in the US illegally.

According to Detective Michael Alexander of the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office, Ali gained access to his alleged victims by gaining the trust of the victim’s families, who invited him into their homes to teach the Quran to their children.

Other Members of the Islamic community are distancing themselves from Ali:

Shariq Abdul Ghani, Director of the Minaret Foundation and representative of the Muslim community, added that Ali was not an employee or official volunteer of any particular mosque, but he traveled to different mosques and schools in the area, establishing himself as a defacto religious leader.

In a phone interview on Monday afternoon, Ghani also said that leaders within the Houston Muslim community were unfamiliar with Ghani. Ali lives in the Houston area of Fort Bend County, according to a news release from the sheriff’s office.

[….]

Surveillance of Ali began in September of 2019, after victims reported the abuse to the FBI, but investigators believe the alleged crimes date back to 2013. Investigators said they believe there are many more victims who have not spoken up, and the sheriff’s office urges those victims to come forward.

More here.

I’ve been joking here at ‘Frauds and Crooks’ that Michigan and Florida seem to have the most ‘new American’ crooks and criminals, but Texas might be giving them a run for the money.

See yesterday at RRW about the Iraqi refugee arrested in Texas suspected of murdering a mother of three in Colorado.

As you can see, there is a lot of crossover between my blogs!

Extra Scrutiny at US Border with Canada; CAIR has Hissy Fit

Last night I had a look at CAIR’s twitter feed (you should all do that from time to time).  It was very illuminating.  They have been hollering for days about a slowdown in movement across the Washington State/Canada border due to Border Patrol doing a little extra checking of those who might pose harm to America.

By the way, in case CAIR and you have forgotten, the President’s travel ban is still in place and Iran is on the list, so checking Iranians right now is doubly important.

(I’ll have more to say about the travel ban at RRW in light of John Binder’s Breitbart post yesterday about how we are still taking refugees from banned countries.)

Here is one of CAIR’s featured outrage stories by their pals at Vox:

Nearly 200 Iranian Americans were detained at the US-Canada border

 

In recent days, as many as 200 people of Iranian descent, some of them US citizens, have been detained at the US-Canada border and questioned about their political views, family members, and work histories.

About 60 individuals, including American and Canadian citizens, were held for questioning about their “political views and allegiances” at the Canadian border in Blaine, Washington, on Saturday, according to the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a nonprofit that advocates for the rights of Muslims in the US.

 

CAIR has been on twitter for ten years and has 51K followers. This tweet has been up for 22 hours with only 6 retweets. Apparently few care what CAIR is saying.

 

US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) confiscated their passports and held some of them waiting rooms for as long as 10 hours, refusing to grant them entry to the US, according to CAIR.

By Monday, as many as 140 more people of Iranian descent had been detained at the border. They were repeatedly asked about their birthplaces, family members, schooling, and work histories.

But CBP also told Vox it’s operating with an “enhanced posture at its ports of entry to safeguard our national security” based on current threats to the US — which, according to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), could include an Iran-backed terrorist attack.

CBP agents have broad legal authority to detain and question individuals at ports of entry, but not to conduct interrogations for hours without cause.

[….]

Though Saturday’s detentions appeared to be a reaction to the recent escalation of tensions between the US and Iran, the administration had already made it difficult for Iranians to enter the US under President Donald Trump’s travel ban, which also affects nationals of six other countries deemed to be security threats.

[….]

In a statement, CAIR said that according to one of its sources at CBP, DHS had directed CBP officials to report and detain anyone of Iranian heritage attempting to enter the US if they were found to be “suspicious or adversarial, regardless of citizenship status.”

“These reports are extremely troubling and potentially constitute illegal detentions of United States citizens,” Masih Fouladi, executive director of CAIR’s Washington chapter, said.

Washington’s Democrat Governor Inslee joined CAIR in its criticism. He apparently is fine and dandy with unhindered traffic in and out of his state.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee called CBP’s denial of the detentions “simply not credible.”

“These were detentions, and that is unacceptable,” Inslee said in a statement. “By all accounts, this is detention, regardless of whether the waiting area has bars on the windows.”

More here.

We should all breath a sigh of relief to know that extra scrutiny is happening at our border in light of recent fears that Iranians would exact revenge on us.