DENVER - After announcing indictments in June 2012 under the Colorado Organized Crime Control Act against daughter Tracy Vasseur and her mother Karen Vasseur of Brighton for their roles in a "Nigerian internet romance scam," Attorney General John Suthers announced the sentencing outcomes on Wednesday.
The Vasseurs stole more than $1 million from 374 victims throughout the United States and from 40 other countries.
"Not only did this mother-daughter duo break the law, they broke hearts worldwide," Suthers said. "It is fitting that they received stiff sentences for their unconscionable crimes committed in the name of love and the United States military."
Tracy Vasseur received a 15-year sentence with the Department of Corrections plus five years parole. In addition, she received a four-year DOC sentence with three years parole to be run consecutively for a total of 19 years. The additional four-year sentence stemmed from a case in which Vasseur was free on bond from the Nigerian case and committed several new crimes related to trying to gain control over her children's inheritance and for attempting to influence a public servant which is a class-four felony.
Karen Vasseur pleaded guilty in Adams County District Court to count one under the Colorado Organized Crime Control Act. She was sentenced to 12 years with the Department of Corrections, plus five years parole, to run concurrent to the 10-year DOC sentence she received for multiple counts of theft from at-risk adults in Weld County.
She falsely represented to victims that she had inherited millions of dollars from a military friend in Nigeria and would able to provide them with unsecured loans if they would pay an origination fee upfront. Vasseur never provided the loans yet kept thousands of dollars in payments. Restitution will be determined at a later date.