Senior accused of being criminal mastermind in grocery theft ring

A 73-year old woman in east end Riviere des Prairies is accused of being the mastermind behind a theft and resale ring specializing in food.  

Police say senior Jeanine Johnson had throngs of people visiting her apartment each day, some selling her the meat, cheese, seafood and other grocery items they'd just shoplifted from various supermarkets while others were there to buy the stolen merchandise.  

Investigators allege that Johnson paid the shoplifters 40% of the sticker price and charged buyers 50%, keeping the difference for herself.  

She is facing up to ten years in jail on charges of conspiracy and possession of stolen goods.  

She insists to La Presse that she did not take a cut for herself and was only trying to help out needy people in the neighbourhood