WWII Vet Claims Caregivers Hosed Him
LAS VEGAS (CN) - A World War II veteran claims in court that his caregiver at an elderly community in Henderson, Nev. "kidnapped" him and hid him from his family while she embezzled from him - and then a court-appointed guardian swiped what was left.
Guadalupe Olvera sued Sun City Anthem Community Association, six people and four other businesses, in a civil racketeering complaint, on Friday in Federal Court.
Olvera says he was staying at Sun City Anthem in late 2009 when one of its employees, defendant Cathy Elliot, with the knowledge of Sun City Anthem officials, "kidnapped Olvera, removed him from his home and proceeded to convert much of his assets for her own use and benefit."
"Elliot kept Mr. Olvera hidden from his family and did not give up control of Olvera until early November 2009," the lawsuit states.
Sun City Anthem describes itself on its website as a community of more than 7,000 homes for active adults 55 and older. It opened in 2008, the year Olvera says he moved in.
Olvera claims Sun City Anthem officials knew or should have known that "Elliot had kidnapped Olvera and taken some action to protect Olvera from its predatory employees."
Soon after the kidnapping, Olvera says, the Clark County District Court's Family Court Division appointed defendant Jared E. Shafer as the guardian of Olvera and his estate.
Instead of protecting him, Olvera claims, Shafer and his employer, defendant Professional Fiduciary Services of Nevada, victimized him again when they "billed and collected hundreds of thousands of dollars for services and reimbursements ... without court approval, accounting or oversight."
Many of the reimbursements were for "charges made to the personal credit cards of Jared E. Shafer," Olvera says.
He claims that Shafer "embezzled funds from the bank accounts of the guardianship estate ... by submitting false or inflated invoices for payment and by taking possession of Social Security and pension funds without rendering an accounting of how those funds were kept or utilized."
While Shafer and Professional Fiduciary Services were in charge of his estate, from December 2009 until April 26, 2013, Olvera claims, both parties charged for services that were "completely unrelated" to his care. He says the "vast majority of expenses are unsupported by any verifying documentation, such as receipts or invoices."
The billings include tens of thousands of dollars for law firms and for bookkeeping services, without court approval, accounting or oversight, according to the complaint.
Olvera claims the defendants took him for more than $420,000. He seeks punitive damages for civil RICO violations, fraud, conversion, unjust enrichment, breach of fiduciary duty and negligence.
He is represented by D. Brian Boggess, with Boggess and Harker.
Named as defendants are Shafer, Elliot, Amy Viggiano Deittrick, Patience Bristol, Eve S. Mills, Susan Bull, Professional Fiduciary Services of Nevada, Avid Business Services, Wells Fargo Bank, Center for Guardianship Certification and Sun City Anthem Community Association.