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Pa. ID thief who romanced bank workers gets prison

November 28, 2011
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PHILADELPHIA—A Philadelphia man convicted of running an ID theft ring with the help of girlfriends at several banks has been sentenced to 15 years in prison.

Federal prosecutors say 35-year-old Miguel Bell romanced bank workers to get them to pass on customer information. He must also pay $1.7 million in restitution after Monday's sentencing.

Fifteen others pleaded guilty in the case, including a PNC bank branch manager, Wachovia Bank teller and Colonial Penn Insurance Co. employee.

Bell's lawyer questioned the credibility of co-defendants who testified against him. But a jury convicted him in June.

Authorities say the scheme ended when Bell crashed his car into a tree -- leading police to a cache of fake credit cards and driver's licenses inside.

Bell's lawyer didn't immediately return a message Monday.

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