Woman, 55, sells 80-year-old's home to pay own debts

THE QPS Fraud and Cyber Crime Group have charged a 55-year-old woman with the fraudulent use of a $200,000 trust established for an 80-year-old woman.

Fraud Squad officers will allege the woman sold a property belonging to the 80-year-old woman and used the proceeds to pay off her own personal debts and to purchase properties for herself in Western Australia and Queensland.

It will be further alleged the 80-year-old was placed in a nursing home with no means of financial support for accommodation, living and medical expenses.

The matter came to light when Centrelink referred the matter to the Adult Guardian and Public Trustee who in turn contacted the Fraud and Cyber Crime Group.

The 55-year-old Petrie woman is to appear before the Pine Rivers Magistrates Court on Friday October 9, 2015.

"The actions of the woman constitute elder abuse and it is important Queenslanders report their concern if they believe a friend, family member or neighbour is experiencing this type of abuse," Acting Detective Superintendent Terry Lawrence of the Fraud and Cyber Crime Group said.

'Sadly elder abuse does exist and the most common forms in Queensland are financial and psychological abuse. Those people who have worked hard all of their lives should be entitled to enjoy their later years without harm and neglect and in the comfort they are respected, loved and cared for," he said.

The Queensland Government has classified any act within a relationship of trust which results in harm to an older person as elder abuse. The most common forms of elder abuse include emotional abuse, financial abuse, physical abuse and neglect.

The Queensland Government Elder Abuse Prevention Unit operates a helpline 1300 651 192 and website (www.qld.gov.au/trustyourinstinct) for support and advice. All Queenslanders are asked to recognise elder abuse as a sometimes forgotten area of domestic and family violence, remain vigilant and trust their instinct and call.

Anyone with information which could assist with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au 24hrs a day.


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