Food Mart owners arrested for food stamp fraud

PALATKA, Fla. – The Florida Department of Law Enforcement arrested Chandeep Sahni, 41, and Arleen Chadha, 40, on charges of racketeering, bank fraud, public assistance fraud and grand theft.  The husband and wife own the Palm and Crill Food Mart, located at 3200 Crill Ave. in Palatka. 
FDLE began its investigation in February after the Palatka Police Department received a tip. Agents believe Sahni and Chadha routinely traded cash for EBT/SNAP cards paying the cardholder approximately half the value of the card.  Over four months, agents conducted numerous undercover operations and received hundreds of dollars in exchange for thousands worth of EBT benefits. 
After exchanging the cards for money, the investigation shows Sahni and Chadha used the EBT cards to purchase food and drink items from major retailers to sell in their store.  Agents were also able to purchase unauthorized items from the store using EBT cards. 
Agents served a search warrant at the Palm and Crill Food Mart this morning and arrested Sahni who was booked into the Putnam County Jail.  Chadha was arrested at the couple’s home on Fleming Island and booked into the Clay County Jail.  Both are being held on a $1.45 million bond. 
Palatka Police Department, Putnam, St. Johns and Flagler County Sheriff’s Offices along with the State Attorney’s Office, 7th judicial circuit, Florida Department of Financial Services, Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) and the United States Department of Agriculture assisted with this investigation. 
The State Attorney’s Office, 7th judicial circuit, will prosecute this case.
For Further Information Contact:
Gretl Plessinger, Molly Best, Samantha Andrews or Steve Arthur
FDLE Office of Public Information
(850) 410-7001