The 74-year-old teacher worked nearly four decades, regularly contributing to her 401(k) and 403(b) retirement funds.
When she retired, she had nearly $850,000 in savings. Then John Piccarreto Jr. convinced her to gradually take most of it for investment in what turned out to be a sprawling Ponzi scheme.
“I lost most of my money,” she wrote in a letter that prosecutors wielded at Piccarreto’s recent sentencing for fraud crimes. “I lost most of my money. Now I panic and live in fear of need medical or home emergencies and not able to afford it. I can’t enjoy time with family and grandkids due to lack of money.”
Piccarreto, 38, was one player in a massive fraud scheme that bilked hundreds of investors out of millions of dollars. Sentenced this week to 84 months in federal prison, he and other co-conspirators in the fraud have been ordered to pay almost $20 million in restitution.
“The victims’ stories are heart-wrenching, with accounts…