A woman who used the personal money of an elderly woman with dementia for her own personal benefit has been sentenced for the crime.


Susanna DiFranco, 53, illegally obtained a debit card from the 77-year-old victim’s bank and, in the span of a month, spent more than $70,000 on things like a trip to Las Vegas, credit cards and clothes.





“When the bank questioned Difranco about the money she was withdrawing from the victim’s account, Difranco provided a notarized statement to the bank in which she lied and said she was keeping the money in a safe deposit box on behalf of the victim,” a statement from the Alaska U.S. District Attorney’s office said.





She pleaded guilty to wire fraud and access device fraud in October, and was sentenced Wednesday to serve one year in prison and six months in a halfway house.


Difranco also has two protective orders against her to prevent her from defrauding her two elderly parents, Harry and Yoshiko Wilkins.


Editor’s note: An earlier version of this report stated Difranco was sentenced to 18 months at a halfway house. This has been corrected.