Local March 14, 2011 | 11:08 am

Dominican preyed on NYC compatriots to spend at least 7 years in jail

NEW YORK.- The Dominican Josie Almonte will spend at least 7 years in prison starting March 24, for swindling her compatriots in Upper Manhattan and the Bronx out of thousands of dollars, District Attorney District Cyrus R. Vance Jr announced Monday.

She faces as many as 10 years in prison and the return of the scammed money, estimated at $50,000 dollars.

Almonte, 33, swindled 16 victims in a real estate scam and according to the file, preyed on vulnerable people in need of apartments and houses through the Federal Government’s housing program.

The convict took the money on promises of helping her victims secure a governmental subsidized residence, Vance said, calling Almonte the type of criminals who take advantage of needy people with different scams.

She was found guilty of the pyramid swindle last week on 28 counts of fraud, grand theft in the first degree, among other crimes, posing as a real estate “agent.”