09/06/2013 07:14 EDT | Updated 11/06/2013 05:12 EST

Carmelita Del Rosario, Edmonton Woman, Sentenced To Jail For Ponzi Scheme


An Edmonton woman who stole nearly $2 million from nearly 50 people in a Ponzi scheme has been sentenced to five years in jail.

Carmelita Del Rosario, 42, had earlier pleaded guilty to two counts of fraud and was sentenced today.

Between 2009 and 2012, when Del Rosario was working as an accounting clerk for the Workers' Compensation Board, she tricked her victims into handing over $1.8 million under the guise of buying into an "investment plan.''

Some of the money has been recovered, but the total loss for the victims is still close to $1.2 million.

Provincial court judge Donna Groves called it a crime which required planning and deliberation, where Del Rosario used friendships and social connections to lure her victims.

One victim, who lost more than $100,000, said it was important to her to see Del Rosario in handcuffs as she was led away following the sentencing.

"It was a relief that the person who commit this scheme get charged, get sentenced. She have to pay for what she did wrong,'' said the victim who didn't want to be identified.

Del Rosario declined to speak in court Friday.

The victims have now launched civil proceedings against Del Rosario.

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