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A group of relatives and a married couple who ran a Minneapolis grocery are among the latest to be charged in the sprawling Feeding Our Future food fraud case, now bringing the total number of defendants to 70.

In a pair of indictments returned by a grand jury late last month and unsealed Monday, one alleges a scheme perpetrated by a half-dozen relatives who helped obtain and launder millions of dollars in fraudulent proceeds intended to help feed needy children during the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the new charges, a consultant for the Feeding Our Future program named Ikram Yusuf Mohamed started multiple sites that claimed to serve food to children under Feeding Our Future's sponsorship. She allegedly put the sites in the name of her relatives to conceal her involvement, solicited and received kickbacks from people and companies involved in the scheme and used her IM Consultation LLC to receive and launder kickback payments and fraud proceeds.

Mohamed is being charged alongside her mother, husband, sister and two brothers in the new indictment. Co-defendants include Suleman Yusuf Mohamed, Aisha Hassan Hussein, Sahra Sharif Osman, Shakur Abdinur Abdisalam, Fadumo Mohamed Yusuf and Gandi Yusuf Mohamed. All nine were indicted on charges of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering, among other charges that include federal programs bribery and other individual counts.

Attorneys have not yet been publicly listed for any of the defendants named in the two indictments unsealed Monday.

The charges outline a similar plot alleged against many of those initially charged when federal prosecutors began rolling out indictments in September 2022. Purporting to operate meal sites between Minneapolis, Edina and Hopkins, the co-defendants in one indictment unsealed Monday are accused of falsely claiming to serve thousands of children daily — while also submitting fake rosters of children served to the state.

Multiple co-defendants allegedly funneled money from the scheme to Ikram through Afrique Hospitality Group, owned by Mukhtar Mohamed Shariff and used it to launder the fraudulently obtained federal funds.

A separate indictment unsealed Monday outlined similar charges against a husband and wife who owned and worked at a grocery and deli in Minneapolis. Said Ereg owned Evergreen Grocery and Deli, which also operated a food site under Feeding Our Future's sponsorship. His wife, Najmo Ahmed, worked for the business and received payroll payments from Feeding Our Future.

According to charges, Evergreen claimed to both serve as a food distribution site but also offer "homework help/mentoring" on its application to participate in the federal food aid program.

Starting in April 2020, before it received official enrollment in the program, Evergreen Grocery and Deli sent meal count sheets claiming to have served thousands of meals that month — later claiming at times to serve more than 3,000 meals, twice a day, seven days a week.

"However, Evergreen Grocery and Deli only served a fraction of those meals," the indictment reads.

Based on those claims, the indictment said, the grocery store received more than $4.2 million in payments for purportedly serving meals.

Instead, the charges allege that the couple transferred much of the money to personal accounts in their own names and made purchases from Burberry, Louis Vuitton and Canada Goose. They also transferred more than $2.5 million to foreign textile and trading companies, and paid more than $100,000 in kickbacks to Abdikerm Eidleh, a Feeding Our Future employee in exchange for sponsorship, the charges allege.

Such payments were often labeled as fees for "consulting" or loan repayments.

The new charges come days after a Burnsville grocery store owner was charged with wire fraud in the case. Hoda Ali Abdi, who owned Alif Halal LLC, was charged Thursday in federal court via a felony information, a charging mechanism through which a defendant waives the right to a grand jury. Prosecutors said Abdi received nearly $1.3 million from the federal meals programs for needy children. The money came through her work as a food vendor to distribution sites and through her own meals program, prosecutors allege.

Prosecutors said she provided fake invoices for substantial amounts of food but distributed little to no food.

"Hoda Abdi is a very good person. She has faced and overcome many hardships in her life," her attorney, Thomas Kelly, said. "Unfortunately she has made mistakes recently in connection with this scheme, for which she is truly contrite. We hope to demonstrate that she had little to gain or gain very little, and loses quite a bit."

Her first court hearing is scheduled for April 11.

In January 2022, the FBI raided Feeding Our Future, a St. Anthony nonprofit that oversaw hundreds of meal distribution sites in Minnesota. The operation is at the center of what prosecutors say is one of the largest pandemic-related fraud cases in the country, totaling more than $250 million.

The federal program reimburses schools and nonprofits for providing meals to low-income children after school and during the summer. According to court documents, Abdi's store was a food vendor for sites sponsored by Feeding Our Future and a St. Paul nonprofit.

So far, 17 people have pleaded guilty in the case. The first trials are slated to begin this spring.

Star Tribune staff writer Kelly Smith contributed to this report.