(CN) – A woman who solicited tens of millions in investments for a phony real estate business was sentenced to six years in federal prison, Manhattan prosecutors announced.
Antoinette Hodgson pleaded guilty in September to scamming more than 20 investors in New York and New Jersey out of $50 million between 2006 and early 2010.
Like many classic Ponzi schemes, Hodgson promised high returns to her investors based on profits from her successful real estate business. In fact, she used the investments to pay off other investors and enrich herself.
“Hodgson destroyed the financial security of dozens of people, all so that she could live a comfortable life and indulge a penchant for gambling, using other people’s money,” U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said in a statement.
District Judge Robert Sweet ordered Hodgson to forfeit $45 million. Once victim losses have been calculated, she is expected to pay around $17 million in restitution.