Anoka County couple charged with welfare fraud

The Anoka County attorney has charged a Ramsey, Minnesota couple involved in a welfare scheme that allegedly bilked the county out more than $20,000.

Investigators say Samantha Cater and her husband Zachariah Cater lied about how much they were truly making to receive government assistance.

Earlier this week Anoka County authorities filed charges against the couple for illegally obtaining more than $21,000 dollars in food stamps and over $7,500 in medical assistance that they were not entitled to.

The complaint states the Caters received public assistance from November 2013 to June 2018.

Apparently, 29-year-old Zachariah Cater underreported his income as a self-employed contractor with a home service company based in Minneapolis.

No one answered the door at their Ramsey home.

The investigation began following a fraud referral because Zachariah’s income was not enough to cover the monthly mortgages and utilities reported by the couple.

The complaints make no reference to Samantha Cater’s income from her photography business or social media presence.

One customer says he paid Samantha nearly $2,000 to photograph his wedding in August 2014. Additionally, we spoke with several other people who said they also paid thousands of dollars to Samantha for photography over the last few years.

“If you’re not going to take time to take care of your customers, how are you going to take time to run a business the right way like you should and not underreport your income and take advantage of the system that Minnesota gives us for people who are actually in need,” said former customer Matt Korsmo.

Both are facing felony charges.

If convicted they could be looking at potentially 10 years in prison.