Florida man who stole identity of US solider fighting in Iraq sentenced to 5 years in prison

GAINESVILLE, Florida — A former Gainesville resident is going to prison for five years for stealing the identity of a U.S. solider fighting in Iraq.

U.S. Attorney Pamela Marsh announced Thursday that 51-year-oild Donald Lee Phelps was sentenced earlier this week for bank fraud and aggravated identity theft.

Phelps arrived in Gainesville in January 2005 and used the soldier’s identity to get a job and open bank accounts and credit card accounts.

Phelps had been sought by the FBI since fleeing Gainesville at the end of 2006. He was arrested in Alabama but he had been living in Texas under another name. Marsh’s office said he was being sought by authorities in three other states for probation violations.

Phelps has been ordered to pay nearly $69,000 to victims of his fraud.

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