Caregiver Exploited Elderly Woman for $1 Million: Police

A South Florida caregiver who stole nearly $1 million from an elderly woman in her care gambled away more than $8 million at the Magic City Casino, authorities said.

Marie Petit Louis, 39, is facing a charge of exploitation of the elderly following her arrest Tuesday, according to a Coral Gables Police arrest report.

Her bond was set at $250,000 Wednesday but she was being held on an immigration warrant, records showed. It was unknown if she has an attorney.

Petit Louis, from Haiti, was one of three caretakers who cared for the victim, Annette Reff, who died in August 2012. Petit Louis cooked, cleaned and drove around Reff, who suffered from dementia, depression and other physical ailments, the report said.

According to the report, Petit Louis took $928,529.44 from Reff between February 2010 and July 2012. Petit Louis had Reff's financial accounts closed out and deposited into her own accounts or had checks written to her.

Petit Louis even posed as Reff in phone calls in which Reff's investments were liquidated, the report said.

When Miami Police first questioned Petit Louis, she claimed Reff gave her the money voluntarily and would also give money away to homeless people, the report said. But Reff told her daughter and accountant she didn't remember giving the money away.

Police learned that in 2012, Petit Louis was a member of the High Rollers Club at the Magic City Casino and that she had gambled away more than $8 million, the report said.

Just under $1 million of the money was proven to have been taken from Reff.

"The defendant capitalized on the victim's medical condition to exploit her out of $928,529.44 over a 2 year period prior to the victim passing away," the report said.

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