Daytona Beach, FL – police have arrested a local father and son in an apparent cash-for-EBT card scam. According to police, the duo were purchasing EBT cards from local residents. While the practice is illegal, the father and son were purchasing EBT cards at discounts of 60% or more of face value.
In one instance, they purchased a $500 EBT card for $200. Next, the duo would use the cards to purchase food items for resale at their convenience store. Bassam and Matthew Abu Diab were both arrested on Monday. Police had been investigating them for three months and say the duo had been using various EBT cards to buy “inventory” items at big chain grocery stores.
Daytona Beach Police Chief Michael Chitwood explained that police have raided their store in the past, but the owner has refused to “learn his lesson”. Chief Chitwood was visibly indignant as he explained these men were earning an income off the backs of taxpayers and robbing the poor.
In recent years, Food Stamps transitioned from currency-like vouchers to bank-like debit cards.
The enormity of the post 2008 recession has placed tens of millions of Americans on food stamp assistance making the one frowned upon practice socially acceptable. Perhaps, the wide use of food stamps makes the program ripe for scams such as these.