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Mexican Citizen in U.S. Guilty of Food Stamps Fraud: Ordered to Pay $1.5M

Raul Carlos Monarca-Gonzalez, a Mexican citizen, 40, was sentenced to 30 months in prison and three years supervised release on Friday in federal court in Hartford, Connecticut, in connection with a massive food stamps fraud scheme, according to a statement from the U.S. attorney’s office.

Monarca-Gonzalez worked at WB Trade Fair Grocery on Willow Street in Waterbury where he, along with others who worked there, illegally allowed customers to redeem food stamps for cash from November 2014 to June 2016.

Investigators from the U.S. attorney’s office say WB Trade Fair Grocery redeemed a total of approximately $3.2 million over an 18-month period, far more than the estimated $120,000 to $240,000 the store could legally redeem.

He was also ordered to pay $1.5 million in restitution, according to the U.S. attorney’s office.

Monarca-Gonzalez pleaded guilty in November to one count of unlawful use of food stamp benefits and one count of conspiracy to commit food stamp fraud.

He also faces immigration proceedings at the end of his prison term.

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