ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — A North Dakota man has been sentenced to nine years in prison for scamming Minnesota welfare programs out of hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Forty-seven-year-old Elfonzo Shelby, of Fargo, was sentenced in Ramsey County District Court Tuesday for using fake identities to swindle more than $300,000 in general assistance and food stamp benefits. Shelby pleaded guilty to the allegations in September.

The St. Paul Pioneer Press reports court records say Shelby used information he collected on phony surveys he sent to inmates at a correctional facility in Mississippi to create the identities. He was sentenced for identity theft and other related crimes.

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Information from: St. Paul Pioneer Press, http://www.twincities.com