5 sentenced for overcharging elders for home improvements

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Five people were sentenced on Friday in a hate crime ring that targeted elderly victims.

They included Susan Barr, 58, of Altamont; her son, Brian Barr, 37, of Schenectady; Jessica Paradiso, 28, of Schenectady; John Risto, 61; and Henry Hicks, 59, of Albany.

Police said from February 2014 to November 2014, the co-defendants worked together on a driveway paving scheme, and their victims were targeted because of their age.

The victims were overcharged for work that was completed or charged for work that wasn’t done at all. The thefts totaled over $40,000.

They were sentenced in Albany County Court and received the following sentences:

  • Susan Barr was sentenced to two to four years in state prison
  • Brian Barr was sentenced to seven-and-a-half to 15 years in state prison
  • Jessica Paradiso was sentenced to six to 12 years in state prison
  • John Risto was sentenced to one to three years in state prison
  • Henry Hicks was sentenced to eight to 16 years in state prison

John Waterson, 38, of Albany faces up to three-and-a-half to seven years in state prison when sentenced on April 5.

The defendants were all ordered to collectively pay back $40,000 in restitution.

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