News and Press Releases

News and Press Releases

South Dakota man pleads guilty to
using stolen identities to obtain welfare and other benefits

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 17, 2011


MINNEAPOLIS – Earlier today in federal court, a 36-year-old man from Sioux Falls, South
Dakota, pleaded guilty to stealing the personal identification of others and using that information
to obtain state welfare and housing assistance benefits as well as credit cards and other things of
value. Antonio Antwon Andolini, formerly of New Brighton, Minnesota, pleaded guilty to one
count of mail fraud and two counts of aggravated identity theft in connection with the crime.
Andolini, who was indicted on June 14, 2011, entered his plea before United States District
Court Judge John R. Tunheim.

In his plea agreement, Andolini admitted that beginning in 2008, he obtained the personal
identification information of at least 17 people and used that information to obtain money and
other things of value. The personal information included names, dates of birth, social security
numbers, and driver’s license numbers. Andolini also admittedly used several of the personal
identifiers to obtain driver’s licenses and identification cards in at least nine different names. For
example, Andolini used the personal identifiers of one person to obtain approximately
$10,381.91 in benefits from the Hennepin County Human Services and Public Health
Department as well as approximately $1,190 in housing assistance from Anoka County
Community Emergency Assistance Program. Andolini also used this victim’s information to rent
an apartment and fraudulently obtain credit cards. In addition, Andolini admitted that in July of
2008, he used the personal identifiers of another victim to rent an apartment, obtain credit cards,
and obtain approximately $367 in benefits from the Hennepin County Human Services and
Public Health Department.

Andolini used numerous other victims’ personal identifiers to obtain credit and debit cards,
create and pass counterfeit checks, rent post office boxes, and acquire an identification card in
South Dakota.

For his crimes, Andolini faces a potential maximum penalty of 20 years in prison for mail
fraud and a mandatory two-year minimum prison sentence for each count of aggravated identity
theft. Judge Tunheim will determine his sentence at a future hearing.

This case is the result of a joint investigation by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the
Department of Immigration and Customs Enforcement-Homeland Security Investigations, and
the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office, in connection with the interagency Document and
Benefits Fraud Task Force.. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Karen B.
Schommer.

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