6 years for man who stole lawmakers’ IDs, passed bad checks

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — A Florida man has been sentenced to six years and five months in prison for stealing the identities of local, state and federal officials in a case involving more than $50,000 in fraudulent payments, authorities said.

Michael T. Watters, 51, of Ocoee, was sentenced Monday in Orlando federal court, according to court records. He pleaded guilty in July to aggravated identity theft and wire fraud.

According to court documents, Watters created approximately 35 counterfeit driver licenses using the stolen identities of current and former lawmakers. Between December 2018 and May 2019, Watters used those counterfeit licenses to pass about 265 counterfeit checks as payment at various stores in the Orlando area.

Prosecutors said Watters caused total losses of $53,156.43 to the affected businesses. Court records didn’t name the officials whose identities were stolen.

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