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Tallahassee Criminal Attorney > Blog > Criminal > Florida City Commissioner Charged with Exploitation of the Elderly, Fraud

Florida City Commissioner Charged with Exploitation of the Elderly, Fraud


The Florida Department of Law Enforcement recently announced criminal charges against 58-year-old Regina Hill, the Commissioner for the City of Orlando. Hill is facing seven charges total including 3 counts of exploitation of the elderly, mortgage fraud, scheme to defraud, and two counts of fraud.

Authorities say that Hill spent thousands of dollars from the estate of a 96-year-old woman for personal gain. The victim was reportedly the last member of her family in the area.

The investigation began in February 2023 after someone filed a complaint that Hill was taking advantage of the victim. The victim lived in a dilapidated house. Hill managed to gain power of attorney over the victim and used the victim’s savings to purchase a home, make expensive purchases, and pay off her debts.

The FDLE alleges that Hill moved into a home that the victim inherited and used the victim’s money to renovate the home while the victim was still living in her own run-down home. The victim was unaware of the losses.

Exploitation of an elderly person or a disabled adult 

Florida Statutes 825.103 lays out the criteria for a conviction of the crime of exploiting an elderly person or disabled adult. There are several elements to this crime and it is a complicated statute. Essentially, as someone who is vested with power of attorney over another individual, you have a fiduciary duty to act in that person’s best interests. The statute states “Breach of a fiduciary duty to an elderly person or disabled adult by the person’s guardian, trustee who is an individual, or agent under a power of attorney which results in an unauthorized appropriation, sale, transfer of property, kickback, or receipt of an improper benefit.” In other words, instead of acting in the best interests of the person, the individual with power of attorney uses the individual’s money for their own personal gain.

The statute also lays out the criteria for sentencing. Sentences for exploitation of the elderly are based on how much money the defendant is alleged to have stolen. If the defendant is accused of stealing less than $10,000, they can be charged with a third-degree felony punishable by up to five years in state prison. If they are accused of stealing between $10,000 and $50,000, they can be charged with a second-degree felony punishable by a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison. If they steal more than $50,000, they can be charged with a first-degree felony punishable by up to 30 years in prison.

In this case, we can safely assume that the defendant is alleged to have stolen more than $50,000 from the victim. In that case, she would face a first-degree felony under Florida law.

Talk to a Tallahassee Criminal Defense Lawyer Today 

If you have been charged with fraud or related offenses in Tallahassee, call the Tallahassee criminal defense lawyers at Luke Newman, P.A. today. We can help you raise a vigorous defense to the charges and ensure your rights are preserved during the prosecution.



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