A West Side deli operator accused of food stamp fraud pleaded guilty to the charges, U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul Jr. announced Wednesday.
Riyadh Almadrahi, 34, of Buffalo, exchanged customer food stamps for cash in violation of federal rules, Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert C. Moscati said. Officials said Almadrahi, who operated Zip’s Food and Beverage on Niagara Street, made more than $140,000 on the fraudulent exchanges.
The indictment is the result of a joint investigation between the federal Department of Agriculture Inspector General’s Office, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the State Police.
Almadrahi, who pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Richard J. Arcara, is scheduled to be sentenced March 27. He faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, a fine of $250,000, or both.