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Condo scammer imprisoned, but judge believes victims’ funds may be gone for good

EDMONTON — A woman who scammed dozens of investors into a deposit for an Alberta condominium and resort that was never built has been sentenced to four years in prison.

Marie LaFramboise, who is 61, was convicted of taking hundreds of thousands of dollars between 2006 and 2010 to construct a dream retirement home near the mountains on the edge of Hinton in west-central Alberta.

The project would have included a hotel, spa and golf course.

The court was told that land for the resort was never purchased from the provincial government.

Around two dozen victims are still owed about $1.3 million.

Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Adam Germain said that even with an imposed restitution order, it’s unlikely any of those who were scammed will ever get their money back.

In one victim impact statement, a woman said LaFramboise preyed on her terminally ill husband who was just trying to leave a legacy for their children.

Another victim said he lost so much money that he was forced to withdraw funds from his child’s bank account to pay for groceries and gas.

Peter and Sue Schubert gave around $400,000 to LaFramboise, who they considered a friend. Now they are happy she’s paying for her crimes.

“It might not be everything we think it should be, but it is a measure of justice,” Sue Schubert told CTV News outside court. “For four years she can’t hurt anyone else.” (CTV Edmonton)

The Canadian Press

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