Housekeeper took over home and stole life savings of woman, 94, in Toronto, Canada

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 03 April, 2014, 11:39pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 03 April, 2014, 11:39pm


A housekeeper and her husband have been arrested for forcibly moving into a 94-year-old Canadian woman's house with their children, confining the woman to a bedroom and emptying her bank account.

Toronto police said Norma Marshall, who lived alone, hired the Portuguese housekeeper four years ago.

The housekeeper's role gradually expanded until one day last month when Marshall answered a knock at the door.

"She ... was surprised to see that the housekeeper was at the door with her husband and children, along with all of their possessions," said Detective Constable Valerie Dahan.

The couple announced to the elderly woman that they were moving in and Marshall was moved into a smaller bedroom and confined to it "most of the time", Dahan said.

The couple then accessed Marshall's bank accounts and allegedly stole her life savings of about C$25,000 (HK$176,000), and began selling off her jewellery and furniture.

The bizarre home invasion fell apart when a pharmacy delivery worker became suspicious and notified the authorities.

He said he delivered a medical prescription to Marshall every Wednesday, and was surprised that a man who claimed to be a relative answered the door.

The delivery man noted that he had not seen any member of Marshall's family in more than a decade.

At his next visit the following week, the delivery man insisted on speaking to Marshall and was taken to her room where, he said, she was "confined to the bed".

He added: "She didn't look at me. She was just scared, so I knew something was wrong."

Police have charged Vera Nunez, 32, and Luis Serpa de Considad Santos, 38, with fraud, theft, mischief, interfering with property and being unlawfully in a dwelling.