DELAWARE COUNTY, Pa. - Prosecutors say three people have been arrested and charged in an embezzlement scheme that involved stealing over $1 million from over 100 victims.
Investigators say Gloria Byars, Keith and Carolyn Collins bill themselves as “guardians” for the elderly, but they are accused of ripping off the very people they were supposed to protect.
The Delaware County District Attorney says the trio stole a fortune from over 100 elderly victims in six Pennsylvania counties.
"Instead of simply doing their jobs, they cruelly embezzled over $1 million dollars from over 100 incapacitated individuals. People who could no make decisions for themselves," Delaware County District Attorney Kat Copeland said.
Guardians are court-appointed advocates for the elderly with control over their money and have the ability to pay bills.
Investigators accuse Byars and the Collins of raiding those accounts to live lavish lifestyles, including the purchase of high-end cars.
A friend of the accused tried to block a FOX 29 camera after bail was set and the three were walked in cuffs to waiting vehicles.
Investigators allege they set up shell companies to hide their alleged schemes and the Collins are accused of using their Trainor, Delaware County church in the alleged rip-off.
The DA says the money taken is so large, she doesn’t think they’ll get it all back, while the pastor’s brother says he’s a man of God.
“I believe my brother is innocent of these allegations. We have no fear. We’re not afraid at all," he said.