© New Zealand Broadcasting School 2019

Elderly woman who cleaned out a Maori trust fund has been sentenced

christchurch court4
Christchurch District Court MetroNews

76-year-old Elizabeth Rose Bruce was sentenced to four months home detention.

Bruce withdrew funds 46 times over a four year period draining a trust she was solely in charge of from over $23,000 to $3 and 21 cents.

Initial claims were that Bruce was using the money to fund her casino visits but it was accepted that she was using the money to aid her financially struggling daughter.

Bruce was ordered to pay the trust $15,000 immediately and pay the trust $30 a week which would take 13 years to fully make up what was lost.