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A Missouri man who stole $218,000 during an identity theft scam spent the cash on gambling and drugs, authorities said. 

Michael Worsham, 33, pleaded guilty Tuesday in federal court to two counts of wire fraud, seven counts of bank fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft, the Justice Department said. 

His illegal activities ran from October 2019 to November 2021, a period in which he took out multiple bank loans in the names of victims and stole checks that he then cashed, federal authorities said. 

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The Justice Department in Washington D.C. Missouri man allegedly used hundreds of thousands of dollars obtained through identity theft to gamble and buy drugs, the DOJ said. 
(Xinhua/Liu Jie via Getty Images)

Worsham admitted to investigators to using the money to purchase a 2015 Ford Mustang, a black Chevy Avalanche and a 2021 Suzuki motorcycle. He also paid a friend to use a stolen identity to buy a 2021 Honda motorcycle. He unsuccessfully tried to buy a $17,841 Ford Mustang GT, federal prosecutors said. 

In July 2021, he allegedly deposited four checks that were altered for a total of more than $50,000 and opened an account in the name of a business and deposited two checks totaling more than $32,000, according to the DOJ. 

In June 2021, Worsham told Missouri police officers he used stolen identities that he purchased online to take out loans. Authorities estimate he committed $200,000 in fraudulent activity. 

He faces up to 30 years in prison and fines of up to $1 million. He is slated to be sentenced in November.

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