This article was originally published on by Madeleine O’Neill on September 12, 2018

An Erie man was sentenced to pay more than $1.7 million in restitution and to serve time in federal prison Monday for his involvement in a food stamp fraud scheme.

Nureden Jibul, 34, received one year and nine months in prison at his sentencing before Senior U.S. District Judge David S. Cercone, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Erie announced.

The defense and the government agreed on the sentence as part of Jibul’s agreement to plead guilty to a felony count of conspiracy to defraud the United States, court records show.

Jibul enlisted a co-defendant, John L. McDowell, to submit a fraudulent application for a food stamp license so that the food stamp terminals at convenience stores owned by Jibul would not be in his name, according to the indictment.

Nureden Jibul was the owner and operator of the One Stop Market, at 402 W. Eighth St.; NJ Market, at 501 E. 13th St.; and One Shop, also known as West Side Market, at 624 W. Eighth St., according to the indictment.

Another co-defendant, Jibul Jibul, owned and operated the Ash Street Market, at 601 E. Sixth St., according to the indictment.

Nureden Jibul, Jibul Jibul and a fourth co-defendant, Samia Jibul, who worked at the convenience stores, allowed food stamps to be exchanged for ineligible items and for cash, according to the indictment.

All of the defendants pleaded guilty to the conspiracy charge, according to court records. Samia Jibul and McDowell both received two years of probation. Jibul Jibul is awaiting sentencing on Oct. 1.

Also sentenced Monday was James Hunter Jr., 39, the owner of Melo’s Stop ’n Shop, 1146 East Lake Road and 2602 Myrtle St., in a separate food stamp fraud case.

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