It was an emotional day in a San Francisco courtroom Friday after three people were sentenced in a high-profile scam that targeted Asian seniors, because some victims said the punishments weren't severe enough.
Law enforcement said a group of older Asian women approached another woman and convinced her that she or her family members were cursed or in danger. They convinced her to hand over her money, jewels and family heirlooms for a blessing, but those items were never returned.
San Francisco police and prosecutors have launched a major campaign to warn elderly Asian women of the scam, but it has taken hundreds of thousands of dollars since it made its way here from China.
A judge handed down a sentence late Friday against three women after hearing tearful victim testimony.
The judge called the scam defendants "despicable," and sentenced them a minimum of two years in county jail.
Victims of the scam weren't pleased.
They were angry because the defendants were granted double time for time already served, so two defendants are eligible to go free next week, with another facing freedom in July.
"We totally disagree, such a scam," said Brandon Lee, the son of a victim.
The three defendants were ordered to pay over $100,000 in restitution to their victims and one will be deported back to China.
Watchdogs are questioning an exclusive agreement between the City of Oakland and a non-profit group, tapped to lead a multi-million dollar project to redevelop the area around the Coliseum BART station.