Gardaí have received a complaint about an elderly Cork man who had up to €100,000 taken out of his bank accounts by a person who had power of attorney over his affairs.
The report was made to gardaí after regular withdrawals from the man’s financial accounts were noticed by a relative.
Gardaí have confirmed they have received the report and are currently “assessing it”.
It is one of several cases of financial abuse among elderly people across the country, according to Age Action.
The organisation cited another elderly person who lives alone and has memory loss. Her two daughters are acting powers of attorney for her.
According to Age Action, one daughter has discovered that her sister has been taking substantial sums of money from the mother’s bank account.
The money continued to be taken even after the culprit was confronted by her sister.
The case has been referred to the HSE safeguarding team in her area.
The Age Action spokeswoman also listed a case in which an elderly man was taken to the bank by his son, to unwillingly withdraw money from his account.
The man later told another son that he did it because he was threatened that he would be put into a nursing home.
Age Action says one-fifth of substantiated elder abuse cases relate to financial abuse.
The organisation said that financial abuse can take a number of forms, including theft of money, the use of a person’s identity in relation to credit and debit cards, forging someone’s signature, use of counterfeit cheques, or being tricked into signing blank cheques.
There are also cases of elderly people being pressured into signing documents or changing wills, or threatening to have care withdrawn unless money or property is handed over.
Age Action and gardaí say that the full extent of elder abuse is not reported either to gardaí or the HSE.
The HSE National Safeguarding Office can be contacted on 1850 24 1850.
This story originally appeared in the Echo