The last of a series of food stamp fraud cases from Wilkinson County wrapped up Tuesday with a yearlong federal prison sentence, prosecutors said.
Lashaundra Evans, 32, of Wilkinson County was sentenced to serve 12 months and one day in prison and to pay $14,460 in restitution to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. She pleaded guilty in July to one charge of food stamp fraud.
Evans was part of a fraud scheme that involved Elbert Eugene Shinholster, 77, who was sentenced in October to 40 months in prison and restitution of $4.68 million on charges of food stamp fraud and money laundering. He ran Shinholsters Grocery and Meat Market in Irwinton, where prosecutors say he conspired with nearly 2,000 food stamp recipients to exchange food stamp credits for cash. He made a 30 percent profit on each deal, federal prosecutors said.
In all, 17 people pleaded guilty in the Shinholster food stamp case.
In a separate case from Wilkinson County, Alfred Boyd was sentenced in October to serve 52 months in prison and pay $800,000 in restitution. Evans was involved in that case with 12 other people, who prosecutors say committed food stamp fraud at the Northwind Mini Mart in McIntyre. Evans charges in that fraud were dismissed in a plea agreement, but she admitted to the fraud.
U.S. Attorney Michael Moore said in a statement that Ms. Evans took advantage of a worthwhile system that was set up to help people who need a hand, just like her and her children.
To contact writer Mike Stucka, call 744-4251.