NJ real estate Ponzi schemer gets six years

December 08, 2010 09:40AM

New Jersey Ponzi schemer Antoinette Hodgson, who pleaded guilty in September to charges that she bilked her clients out of $50 million worth of mostly bogus real estate investments, was sentenced in Manhattan Monday to six years in prison, U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara announced. Hodgson, who was said to have carried out the fraud between 2006 and late 2009, will also have to forfeit $45 million and pay more than $17 million in restitution once the losses of her more than 20 victims in New York and New Jersey are accounted for, according to her sentence. Prosecutors had accused Hodgson of taking in tens of millions of dollars from investors, under the guise of plans to buy and renovate residential properties that would later be sold or rented. Instead, she spent only $6 million on residential real estate during the nearly four-year scheme, and made less than $700,000 off the properties, prosecutors argued. Meanwhile, Hodgson used the bulk of the $50 million to repay earlier investors and to fund her own lifestyle, they said. TRD