LOS ANGELES – A Canadian man has been sentenced to nine years in prison for using a lottery scam to cheat dozens of elderly Americans out of $600,000.
Henry Anekwu, of Vancouver, British Columbia, also was ordered Monday to pay about $500,000 in restitution.
Federal prosecutors in Los Angeles say that from 1998 through 2003, the 43-year-old employed telemarketers who told victims they had won a lottery but had to pay taxes before they could collect.
Anekwu called the 79 victims over and over again, demanding more money and encouraging them to borrow to pay the fees.
He was arrested in Canada and extradited to the U.S. in 2009.
U.S. District Judge John F. Walter says it was "painful" to listen to the testimony of victims but Anekwu showed no remorse.