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Kokomo Tribune: Thursday, March 31, 1994 - Page 1

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   Kokomo Tribune (Newspaper) - March 31, 1994, Kokomo, Indiana                                207 KOKOMQ lTRIBUNE March 50 cents Food stamp fraud found Grocers buy redeem high WASHINGTON AP In a scheme to launder food stamps and stay a step ahead of investiga unscrupulous grocers are banding together to buy the paper coupons from recipients at a dis count and then redeem them from the government for full Federal officials say such under ground networks of small gro ceries are springing up around the country as food stamp traffickers become sophisticated in their efforts to defraud a program that provides billion in benefits to 27 million lowincome Retailers who traffic in food stamps buy them at less than their typically 50 cents to 75 cents on the then cash them in at full Sellers include wel fare recipients or middlemen and drug who trade the paper coupons for drugs or other items of value on the Federal investigators tend to discover laundering when a store redeems more food stamps than other neighborhood grocers or when food stamp redemptions are out of line with food Merchants in these new conspir acies are trying to sidestep those trip wires by shipping coupons from a store with a nigh volume in illegal food stamp purchases to retailers with a smaller investigators The Agriculture Department estimates that all types of traffick ing cost the food stamp program at least million a but USDA officials say there is no way to know how much laundering is being done by the underground Department officials who over see the program say stores involved in trafficking tend to be small not large supermar kets or major chainstore and represent a small minority of the retailers authorized to accept food Craig the assistant inspector general in charge of investigations for the Agriculture says investigators are finding more retailers coop erating among themselves to evade He said that underground net works of stores are operating all over the country and coupons are being shipped across state In a recent authorities in California charged three grocery stores in Stockton and one in San Jose with illegal food stamp traf The government alleged that the owner of a Stockton mar ket bought food stamps and then brokered them through the three other Ron is con vinced it is an emerging and wide spread It looks like its being done by very sophisticated crooks who under stand the technology and obviously able to get out in front of Jaw said whose House Small Business sub committee on regulation has spent several years investigating food stamp The average monthly food benefit is Food stamps come in denominations of and and can be used to buy almost any type of Exceptions include hot prepared alcoholic ciga rettes and household items such as toilet paper and Beauchamp said efforts to defraud the food stamp program have grown sophisticated with the dramatic growth in the num ber of people on the rolls and the number or coupons in Rolling into spring ra NS annual Spuring yard observer Robert WiseAPril wi enter in with highs near 57 on rolling and first mowing of the Temperatures should rise Friday and 60 on Saturday thS afternoon with a hi9h near 50 accordin9 local weather Tribune photo by Brian Scionti thought child was in danger Whale of a hug Chelsea daughter of President and gives a hug to Shamu the killer whale Wednesday during a visit to Sea World Park in San Chelsea and her parents are vacationing in AP photo Attorney Kevin Scionti who was issued a public reprimand March 23 by the Indiana Supreme Court said ne acted out of concern for his clients young According to an opinion issued by the Indiana Supreme Scionti had advised his Gary Smoot to violate a court order which instructed him to return his child to the mothers Scionti who practices law in ran an unsuccessful campaign for Howard Circuit Judge in the 1992 On Scionti told the The situation simply was that we thought the child was in danger from his The mother was charged with molest ing and so in consultation with the client we detained Gary and Annette Smoot were divorced in April 1990 and Annette was given custody of their Gary Smoot was allowed visitation rights every other But in December the Delaware County prosecutor charged Annette Smoot with molesting the a Class B In September Scionti challenged the terms of the cus tody order on behalf of On Smoot picked up the child for but act ing on Sciontis failed to return the child thus vio lating the court order outlining the terms and conditions of visita according to the Supreme An ex parte order requested by Annette Smoot was signed into effect by Judge Thomas Newman of Henry Superior Court on 11 directing Gary Smoot to return the child immediately to its moth Scionti requested that the order be removed and filed for emer gency custody on behalf of Gary The the Delaware County prosecutor charged Annette Smoot with intimidation and obstruction of The charges alleged that Annette struck her son and coached him not to testify against During this Gary Smoot retained custody of his child and kept in contact with Scionti and another Donald Dun We thought Annette Smoot was going to be arrested based on new information that she had hit the child and coached him not to testify against So we felt that if she were then the child would be in more danger in that Scionti We felt PROP fund drive hits goal the judge should review the The Supreme Court took a dim view of his actions and stated that as a licensed Scionti should have known that interfer ing with custody is a criminal vio lation according to Indiana However it acknowledged that since Scionti acted solely out of concern for the he should be issued a public reprimand and should be allowed to practice In Scionti We had the case for all of two months and we didnt have a true picture of the total history of the It was a vicious custody He added that the Supreme Court should have taken into con siUeration the fact Gary Smoot kept the boy for all of two weeks and he never left the state and he was in contact with his lawyers the whole The People Rescuing Our Planes Fund Drive has reached its minimum but the drive is not according to Charlie fund drive The drive raised as of this but there are still more contributions coming Kingery Were assured the planes are going to Now were going to go We have reached the min imum Were going to continue until we reach The drive will not be over until is in the Kingery That would make the finan cial position a lot The fund drive was launched 22 by a dedicat ed group of volunteers from the Heritage Museum Foundation and Miami and Howard Their goal is to raise Although the Air Force Museum at WrightPatterson AFB only requires there be in a bank account by Fri The is the minimum operations funds required before the collection of irreplaceable war planes can be loaned to a civil There are 17 historic warplanes on display on 20 acres near the entrance to wishing to donate can send a check to Grissom Air 6500 Hoosier 46971 or can call 6882654 and pay by credit Air Museum hours are 8 to 4 Tobacco industry under fire again NEW ORLEANS AP Melvin Belli and 25 other powerhouse lawyersare suing the tobacco industry for an estimated billion on behalf of everyone ever addicted to We will prove that the tobacco industry has con spired to catch hold you and kill the flam boyant personalinjury lawyer said All without a moment of remorse or The federal classaction suit against the nations major cigarette makers accuses tobacco companies of manipulating the level of nicotine in their products to hook and keep The industry denies boosting nicotine in its prod ucts above the naturally occurring levels and denies that tobacco products are addictive or District Judge Frederick Heebe barred the companies from destroying any records pertinent to the He set a hearing for April Philip Morris sued ABC for billion last week over a story accusing it of adding nicotine to its The Belli lawsuit accuses the companies of conspiracy and Inside Local Democrat Hugh Salisbury hopes to be in Congress and is campaigning with Social Security a gallon of gas and a fistful of Page Style cast My Fair Lady Page Also inside Classified Dear Local News of PMNTED WITHl SOVIMKl He claims to bear the wounds of crucified Christ By MARTIN WROE Manchester Guardian Service Scotland George Hamilton is more than a little His hands are the wound on his side is both his feet are bleeding and his forehead doesnt look too Hamilton hasnt been beaten and he denies being a Hes one of an estimated 20 stigmatics in the For reasons he doesnt understand his body bears the wounds of the crucified He has suffered for eight years as Good Friday the blood flows more In Lent its pretty the Scottish stigmatic explained If I walk across the It feels like Im walking on tacks or broken I have to change the bandages twice a Sometimes its not much other times they are a former steelwork er who lives with his commonlaw in a Glasgow has been receiving medical and psychiatric treatment for nearly a He now wears a drip and is on a liquid Hes a devout Roman Catholic by his own is not an especially holy He prays a mainly at night because he doesnt want to upset a By he watches television I especially like Star Trek its one of the few programs that takes my mind off what Ive What hes got is very John Hamiltons is an elder in the Church of which is Spence is not predisposed to belief in Roman Catholic religious phenomena such as but hes confident that Hamilton is no Ive known him for 10 years and I dont believe he is abusing Spence He is but I think there may be a psychosomatic The dramatic physical effects of stigmata have been reproduced under Ashley a Cambridge stage puts the phenome non entirely down to the power of People such as he reflect so much on the crucifixion of Jesus that their bodies mysteri ously respond in Ted author of a new book on stigmata who investigated the estimates there are 20 legitimate stigmatics alive two of them in Francis of in the 13th was the worlds first historically attested stigmatist but Padre the Italian is this centurys most celebrat Some of his devotees wear bloodied scabs of his stigmata in Hamilton lives quietly and often doesnt even go to He has mixed feelings about his status I feel Im enduring the suffering of but I dont know Distributed by Scripps Howard News   

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