Man ‘guilty’ in $11 million ripoff of state |

Man ‘guilty’ in $11 million ripoff of state

DENVER – A Denver jury has convicted a 42-year-old man of racketeering, theft and other charges in the theft of $11 million in unclaimed tax refunds from the state.

The jury deliberated less than four hours Monday before returning 52 guilty verdicts against Hysear Randell. He was charged with 54 felony counts, including violating the Colorado Organized Crime Control Act, theft, theft by receiving, computer crime, forgery, and conspiracy to commit theft and embezzlement of public property.

Randell was acquitted of two counts of computer crime. He potentially faces hundreds of years in prison when he’s sentenced Sept. 25.

Randell was accused of a scheme involving his ex-girlfriend, Michelle Cawthra, a former Colorado Department of Revenue supervisor. Cawthra testified during Randell’s weeklong trial that she deposited unclaimed tax refunds and other money in Randell’s bank accounts over two years by forging documents and creating fake businesses.

Cawthra is serving a 24-year prison term after pleading guilty to racketeering.

Randell’s wife, Trudy Randell, is accused of helping create bank accounts for the scheme. She has pleaded guilty to theft but has not yet been sentenced.

Authorities recovered $49,000 in assets when Randell was arrested and have found and frozen another $700,000 in assets.

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