Wisconsin Contractor & Wife Plead Guilty to Home Improvement Project Fraud Scheme
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Wisconsin
MADISON, WIS. – Timothy M. O’Shea, United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Tyler Hansen, 52, Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin, pleaded guilty today in U.S. District Court in Madison to wire fraud and money laundering charges in connection to a contractor fraud scheme he committed throughout Wisconsin. Jennifer Hansen, 43, who is Tyler Hansen’s wife, also pleaded guilty today to money laundering in connection with her participation in the fraud scheme.
Between October 2020 and September 2022, Tyler Hansen operated a home improvement business based in Dane County and Jefferson County that operated under multiple names, including Weathersealed Wisconsin and EcoView Windows of South-Central Wisconsin. At today’s hearing, Tyler Hansen pleaded guilty to engaging in a wire fraud scheme in which he entered into contracts for home improvement projects with customers throughout Wisconsin knowing he did not intend to order supplies for the jobs or otherwise start the projects. The contracts were for various home improvement projects, including windows, sunrooms, bathroom remodels, roofs, and doors. At the time the project contracts were signed, Tyler Hansen and his associates regularly required that the customers pay 50% of the total contract price as a down payment. As part of the plea agreement, Tyler Hansen admitted that he lied to his customers and told them that he used the money from the down payments to purchase building materials for their projects. Instead, Tyler Hansen used the money from the down payments to pay for personal expenses.
Tyler Hansen, along with his wife Jennifer Hansen, also pleaded guilty to participating in a money laundering conspiracy in which they attempted to conceal and disguise the down payment funds by using multiple business and personal bank accounts. The Hansens admitted that they routinely deposited down payment checks from customers into multiple bank accounts at Fort Community Credit Union associated with their business. Once the down payment checks were deposited, the Hansens often transferred the funds to multiple personal accounts at Fort Community Credit Union in order to conceal and disguise the true nature of the funds and to make it more difficult for clients to receive refunds of their down payments.
The maximum penalty for the wire fraud charge is 20 years in prison. The maximum penalty for the money laundering charge is also 20 years in prison. The Court scheduled Tyler Hansen’s sentencing hearing for December 19, 2023 at 1:00 p.m., and Jennifer Hansen’s sentencing hearing for December 13, 2023 at 1:00 p.m.
The charges against the Hansens were a result of an investigation led by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, IRS Criminal Investigation, the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office, the Walworth County Sheriff’s Office, and with the assistance of law enforcement officers and District Attorneys’ Offices in the following counties in Wisconsin: Richland, Vernon, Grant, Dane, Fond du Lac, Green Lake, Jefferson, Vilas, Walworth, Waukesha, Iowa, Kenosha, Adams, Columbia, Green, Monroe, Rock, Sauk, Winnebago, Sheboygan, Dodge, and Brown. Assistant U.S. Attorney Aaron Wegner is handling the prosecution.
Updated October 4, 2023