Ana Beti Molina and Javier Molina of Silver Spring, Maryland, were found guilty of multiple felony theft charges. Their victim? A 99-year-old man.
WUSA9’s recent article, “Md. couple steals more than $1 million from man with dementia,” reports that authorities say Ana Beti started work as a maid for Gustave Shapiro in 2012. In four years, Beti was able to dupe Shapiro into opening joint bank accounts, so both she and her husband, Javier, would have access to Shapiro's $4 million fortune.
"She used a classic technique of isolation and separation of an elderly gentleman who was starting to degrade because of his dementia," said Ramon Korionoff, spokesperson for the Montgomery County State's Attorney Office.
In total, the couple stole $1.2 million of Shapiro’s money. Korionoff said they were able to use the money to finance their daughter’s college education, buy a SUV and a home.
Remarkably, the couple claimed in the trial, in their defense, that somehow buying an SUV was in the best interest of Mr. Shapiro.
Banking officials eventually questioned some of Mr. Shapiro’s finances. That query led to a subsequent investigation of the Molinas. The Shapiro’s attorney said the family was happy that the Molinas were caught.
“They're very relieved at the outcome today," said Attorney Heather Mehigan. "It’s been a very difficult few years for the family.”
Mr. Shapiro died in 2016, but the state’s attorney’s office was able to act fast enough to save close to $2 million of Shapiro's savings for his true heirs.
Reference: WUSA9 (November 27, 2017) “Md. couple steals more than $1 million from man with dementia”