KUNM

Judge Unseals State Investigation Into Falsified Food Stamps Apps

Jul 6, 2016

    

A federal judge unsealed the results of a state investigation into falsification of food stamp applications by state employees Wednesday. That means the internal Human Services Department report will be released to the public. Public Health New Mexico's Marisa Demarco spoke with KUNM's Chris Boros. 

HSD Inspector General Adrian Gallegos told the court that his investigation has flagged 260 cases from three months of applications where food stamps requests may have been falsified by state employees. He said the probe is ongoing.

HSD Secretary Brent Earnest testified that he had no knowledge of workers adding assets to emergency food stamp applications before the allegations came to light earlier this year.

State employees have said during interviews with investigators that the practice dates back at least 24 years. 

Earnest also confirmed that there have been two claims of retaliation from workers who spoke out in court hearings about their concerns.