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Rapides DA dismisses charges in unauthorized use of SNAP benefits case



ALEXANDRIA, La. – The Rapides Parish District Attorney’s Office has dismissed a series of racketeering, money laundering and fraud charges an Alexandria business owner faced for a March 2019 Louisiana State Police bust.

Louisiana State Police arrested Mohammad Abudayeh, 27 of Alexandria, after an investigation into the Food Mart in Alexandria on Third Street concerning allegations of the owner buying SNAP benefits from locals.

Police alleged that Abudayeh conducted over $1.2 million in EBT transactions, which they said was well above the amount a store that size should be conducting.

Abudayeh was charged with racketeering, money laundering, two counts of bank fraud, two counts of computer fraud, two counts of unauthorized use of SNAP benefits and criminal conspiracy.

On Monday, the Rapides Parish District Attorney’s Office dismissed the charges. Instead, Abudayeh pleaded guilty to the lesser offense of theft < $750, which is a misdemeanor.

He was sentenced by Judge Mary Doggett to six months in the parish jail. That sentence was suspended, and he received six months unsupervised probation. He is also required to pay a $500 fine and court costs. Restitution was paid in full.

The case was prosecuted by Cheryl Carter. Abudayeh was represented by John Flynn.