We hear about fraud occurring in government programs all the time, right? So why was this month’s SNAP (food stamp) bust in Florida – aptly named Operation Stampede/Cash Hungry – so noteworthy?
With SNAP we generally see trafficking as the major fraud channel, where beneficiaries sell their own benefits to small-time crooked retailers and buyers for about 50 cents on the dollar. Generally, this is so they can support their families in other ways with the money, but sometimes it’s for nefarious reasons. Even so, SNAP fraud is touted at about 1.3% of all SNAP costs (there's some debate on that number), which is very minor when you consider the billions $ going into the program. Commercial enterprises face the same or more.