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Couple Swindled Elderly Mom, Prosecutors Say

A man and his ex wife are scheduled for arraignment on suspicion of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from his 91-year-old mother.

An ex-couple accused of stealing $350,000 from the husband's 91-year-old mother are scheduled to be arraigned Friday.

Peter Garcia, 70, and his former wife, Virginia Kay Furr-Garcia, 50, both of San Clemente, are accused of taking about $350,000 from the victim's four annuity funds without her knowing and transferring the proceeds into a joint account of Garcia and his mother, according to the Orange County District Attorney's Office.

Garcia allegedly then transferred the money from the joint account into another account the couple had control over, according to prosecutors.

The two are accused of spending the money on personal living expenses such as groceries, gas and utility bills, according to prosecutors. The alleged victim realized her money was gone when she could not afford to pay her bills at her senior living home for several months, prosecutors said.

She reported the alleged theft to sheriff's deputies in March 2011. The defendants, who were arrested Wednesday, were being held on $500,000 bail.

Garcia and Furr-Garcia are charged with grand theft, conspiracy to defraud another of property, conspiracy to commit forgery and theft from an elder with sentencing enhancements for property loss more than $200,000 and aggravated white collar crime more than $100,000.

The two could face up to six years in prison if convicted at trial.

-- From City News Service

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