PHOENIX - A man has been accused of pretending to be a highly decorated Marine by wearing a uniform with ribbons representing prestigious military honors, cops said yesterday.

John William Rodriguez, 31, was arrested Wednesday and faces 13 charges of felony fraud schemes, state public-safety officials said. He was being held at the Maricopa County jail.

Detective Roger Wilson said that Rodriguez got discounts on airline tickets, lived free and made friends by introducing himself as a Marine.

Wilson said that Rodriguez, who is unemployed, had been living for two months without paying for his stay in the suburban Phoenix home of a man he met on a flight to Phoenix.

He also said that Rodriguez cited an upcoming deployment to Iraq to get a court hearing on a drunken-driving charge postponed. *