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Feb 17, 2010 4:08 PM

La. man gets 309 years in prison for ID theft scam

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) A Louisiana man whom prosecutors said was the ringleader of an identity theft scheme with dozens of victims has been sentenced to 309 years in prison.

U.S. Attorney David Dugas said the sentence handed down Wednesday to 43-year-old Robert Thompson, of Zachary, is the longest prison sentence for any white-collar crime in the history of his Baton Rouge-based office's jurisdiction.

Thompson, also known as John Lawson, allegedly used the identities and financial information of 61 individuals, churches, financial institutions and businesses to steal more than $200,000 worth of cash and goods. Prosecutors said Thompson also tried to steal $20 million from an unidentified victim's bank accounts, but authorities foiled the scheme.

Thompson pleaded guilty to fraud and theft charges last May.

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