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Lacroix sentenced to 13 years


Date: Friday, October 9, 2009
Author: Canadian Press

Ex-Norbourg boss Vincent Lacroix was sentenced to 13 years in prison on Friday for bilking clients out of more than $100 million.

Quebec Superior Court Justice Richard Wagner's sentence came about three weeks after Lacroix surprised everyone by pleading guilty to 200 fraud-related charges.

He stood accused of pilfering $100 million from some 9,200 investors.

The Crown was seeking the maximum sentence of 14 years in prison, while Lacroix's lawyer countered that a sentence of between 10 and 12 years would be sufficient.

The judge ruled that the 13-year term will run consecutively to a five-year sentence Lacroix ended up with for securities violations related to the same crimes.

Lacroix was convicted on those violations in 2007. The initial sentence of 12 years was eventually whittled down to five years after appeals by the accused.

Lacroix begged for forgiveness when he appeared at his sentencing hearing a few weeks ago, saying he regretted "infinitely" regretted his actions.

"I ask you once again for 9200 pardons, but I am aware of your anger and your frustration," Lacroix told the court.

"My objective is to help you find your savings. Consumed by numbers, I forgot my human side."

Crown prosecutor Serge Brodeur was unmoved by Lacroix's plea and asked for the maximum 14-year sentence for the infractions committed after September 2004, when tougher laws were introduced.

The Quebec government announced last month it would distribute about $7 million to investors duped by Lacroix.

Filed by The Canadian Press

Originally published on Advisor.ca