Authorities charged a woman who sold her food stamps in order to score heroin and 63 other Pennsylvania residents with welfare fraud Monday.
The state Inspector General’s Office alleges that the defendants cost Pennsylvania roughly $285,000 by ripping off medical assistance benefits, food programs and state daycare services. One woman, 25-year-old Dana R. Pryor, is accused of selling her food stamps to buy heroin and helping another woman to do the same, reports Penn Live.
Pryor allegedly aided Tanya Keenan-Mack Feb. 6 when she used Facebook to sell her state Access Card for $100, which held $194 of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits.
“My Food Stamps at Half Price,” read the Facebook post. “I’m looking to sell them ASAP.”
Pryor also sold an Access Card Feb. 18 without Facebook, which held $107 in benefits. In both cases the women used their profits to buy $30 of heroin. Pryor is charged with misdemeanor fraud and faces up to five years in prison if convicted.
She will also be disqualified from receiving any future welfare benefits if found guilty. (RELATED: Librarians Stock Up On Overdose Antidotes As People Flock To Philly For A Better High)
Pennsylvania is suffering from rampant opioid abuse, particularly centered around Philadelphia. Heroin addicts from out of state are actually flocking to Philadelphia because of the reputation of heroin in the city as some of the strongest in the country.
Officials say that the presence of fentanyl, a painkiller roughly 50 to 100 times more powerful than morphine, and other strong chemicals in heroin are causing addicts to purposefully seek it out for abuse.
Drug overdoses are now the leading cause of accidental death for Americans under 50.
The New York Times recently culled through data from state health departments and county medical examiners and coroners, predicting that there were between 59,000 and 65,000 drug deaths in 2016.
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