ST. LOUIS (KMOX) — A man from Nigeria has been sentenced to nearly three years in federal prison for stealing identities of dozens of people and using them to file false tax returns that resulted in $734,000 in bogus refunds.

The St. Louis Post Dispatch reports 38-year-old Olusola Luke was sentenced Wednesday. He pleaded guilty in October to conspiracy to steal government funds.

Luke was living in St. Louis in 2015 when he fled the country. He returned to the U.S. in April and was arrested.

U.S. District Judge Henry Autrey ordered Luke deported after his prison term banned him from returning without authorization. Luke and a co-conspirator, St. Louis musician Olufunsho Adeshina, must repay the money to the IRS. Adeshina was sentenced to more than three years in prison in 2016.

(© Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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