DENVER (CBS4) – Two men were sentenced on Tuesday in a human trafficking scheme that involved importing women from the Philippines and putting them into forced labor.
The plan involved tricking trained nurses from the Philippines to come to Colorado to chase the dream of a job in a university at with good pay.
Advertisements lured the women with promises of a job as a nurse supervisor at $72,000 a year. In reality they ended up working under coercion in nursing homes.
Kizzy Kalu and Phillip Langerman were both convicted in the case.
“I didn’t call it a scheme, it was a process to bring nurses from out of the country to here,” said Langerman.
Langerman said he was deceived by the high profile Kalu.
Nurses were encouraged to apply for the program with a $250 check payable to Kizzy Kalu.
“What took place shouldn’t have taken place and we did some things that weren’t appropriate. I didn’t realize that at the time, but I do now,” said Langerman.
Nursing home operator Jay Moscowitz said he eventually became suspicious of Kalu.
“Some the nurses came and told us they weren’t getting all the money from Kizzy and we started asking questions,” said Moscowitz.
Kalu was eventually convicted of 89 counts, including human trafficking, and is looking at nearly 11 years in prison.
Langerman pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges and cooperated with the government in the case and received three years probation.
Both Kalu and Langerman are responsible for $3.7 million in restitution.