A couple and their daughter, originally from Trinidad, have been jailed in the United States for a total of 418 years, for conning 19 Caribbean immigrants out of more than $1.8 million.

In a sentence handed down by a court in Queens, New York on Wednesday, Shane Ramsundar, 52, wife Gomatee, 48, and daughter Stantal, 23, were described by the judge as “the most despicable gang of criminals to ever sit in front of me.”

“You and I know that if you did this fraud and paraded and strutted around in front of your own people, in your own country, you probably would have all been hacked to death,” Holder told the family, which hails from Trinidad. “But not in this country. Now it’s your time to hear your return on your investment for your crime,” the judge said.

Shane Ramsundar received the maximum 235-year sentence. His wife was sentenced to 153 years and daughter 30 years.

The three were found guilty last November of grand larceny.

Prosecutors said that Shane Ramsundar told immigrants that he could get their names or terror watch lists, or prevent their deportation by getting then green cards.

Assistant District Attorney Catherine Kane said: “They stole from their own, people afraid of reporting to the police, terrified of being deported back to a place where they had no one to go home to”.

One of the victims was an immigrant suffering with multiple sclerosis who gave the family $43,000 after being told by the family of con artists that at he was about to be deported.

Ramsundar also fooled immigrants into believing that he could get them cheap housing.

Prosecutors said that the family used some of the money to buy cars, expensive hand bags, a $2,700 Yorkie dog and go on shopping sprees.