In free lunch fraud: The charges

United States Attorney Andrew Luger called a press conference to announce indictments in the massive Minnesota free lunch fraud that we have covered in the linked series of posts since that date back to this past January. At that time the FBI executed a search warrants and property seizures all over the Twin Cities. The fraud involved hundred of millions of federal tax dollars. It was massive, as I say, but it was also open, obvious, and notorious. The government has charged Feeding Our Future founder/front woman Aimee Bock and 47 defendants in six indictments along with three criminal informations — with a promise of more defendants to come — in what it assesses to be a $250 million fraud. Luger stated that the government has recovered cash and property worth a total of $50 million to date.

I just left the press conference (photo above). It was attended by representatives of the FBI (Minnesota Special Agent in Charge Michael Paul), the IRS (Special Agent in Charge Justin Campbell, Chicago), the United States Postal Inspection Service Inspector in Charge (Ruth Mendonca, Denver), and Associate Deputy Attorney General & Director of Covid-19 Fraud Enforcement (Kevin Chambers, from Main Justice in DC). The Department of Justice has posted a press release here. The press release links to two of the six indictments. If you read one, read the one charging Bock here.

This is a huge story involving the biggest food fraud in history and the largest pandemic fraud uncovered so far. We’re number one.

Bock appears to have been the ringleader who recruited members of the Twin Cities Somali community to participate in the fraud. Bock was the front women who claimed discrimination when the Minnesota Department of Education first sniffed out the fraud. Bock was a genius plying that line. She may even be able to teach her fellow prisoners a thing or two about it when she is sent away.

We’ve been writing about Guhaad Hashi Said on Power Line for several years. We have previously identified him as Ilhan Omar’s enforcer. His picture shushing the Somali community is our thumbnail image for stories about Omar and now for this one involving Hashi himself. He is charged in the third of the six indictments: “Guhaad Hashi Said, 46, of Minneapolis, Minnesota, is charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, wire fraud, and conspiracy to commit money laundering. Hashi ran a site under the name Advance Youth Athletic Development that falsely claimed to serve up to 5,000 meals a day.” He is a well-known thug. What a farce.

I asked Andy Luger if he could explain to the average person how such a massive and obvious fraud — “an egregious plot,” in the words of the press release — could continue for nearly two years before it was shut down. Consistent with Department of Justice policy, he referred me to the indictments, but the question will persist.

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