EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. (AP) - A southwestern Illinois man has been ordered to spend 27 months in federal prison for stealing unemployment benefits and evading taxes.

Fifty-nine-year-old James Quirin of Sauget pleaded guilty to three counts of tax evasion, as well as one count apiece of theft of government funds and of filing a false tax return.

Quirin was ordered Friday to pay more than $44,000 in restitution to the Illinois Unemployment Compensation Fund and nearly $385,000 to the Internal Revenue Service.

Authorities allege Quirin wrongly collected unemployment benefits while he had a job, at times concealing the wrongdoing by converting the checks to cash through a St. Louis money-services business.

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