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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Friday, April 2, 2010

Con man Wong admits to stealing as much as $7 million

Advertiser Staff

Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

Winfred Wong

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Dressed in a snow-white prison jumpsuit that matched the color of his hair, 90-year-old con man Winfred Wong this morning admitted stealing as much as $7 million from as many as 50 victims.

Wong appeared in a federal court to plead guilty to four criminal charges in a deal reached with prosecutors that calls for him to serve no more than five years in prison.

"My greatest fear is that he will die alone in prison," Wong's lawyer, federal Deputy Public Defender Donna Gray said.

Wong's plea agreement called for him to admit stealing $50,000 from one victim, Maria Ching, and more than $700,000 from the Bank of Hawaii and American Savings Bank.

But he agreed to repay other victims between $2.5 million and $7 million.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Amy Olson estimated that the total number of Wong's victims totals somewhere between 10 and 50.

Federal District Judge David Ezra will sentence Wong July 26.