Sisters Sentenced To Prison; Bilked Senior Citizen $350K

CHICAGO (JGL) – A Filipina certified nursing assistant (CNA) and her little sister got a bleak Christmas when they were sentenced on Dec. 22 to six and four years in state prison, respectively, after pleading guilty one after the other to bilking about $350,000 an elderly Chicago senior citizen under their care.

Judge Joseph M. Claps of the Circuit Court of Cook County in Chicago, Illinois sentenced Carmelita Pasamba to six years in state prison after pleading guilty to one count of financial exploitation out of 11 counts of financially exploiting elderly (80 years old plus and more than $5,000); financially exploiting a disabled (of more than $100,000); theft to deprive the owner permanently of the use or benefit of property worth from $100,000 to $500,000; theft thru deceptive practice of at least $50,000; forgery of documents; and got an additional five years of state prison after pleading guilty to forgery/making documents that her client is of sound mind out of the separate set of eight counts, including financial exploitation of an elderly and disabled and theft.

Pasamba represented that Dr. Pradag Simovic issued a delivery document on April 30, 2008 attesting that her client, Marshall F. Davies, had no memory loss problem. Dr. Simovic disowned the signature in the document.

The six- and five-years imprisonments will run concurrently. Pasamba, 64, is given 628 days credit for time served. She is projected to be released on March 23, 2018 and will be eligible for parole on March 23, 2016 with a mandatory supervision release of one year.

Her younger sister, Jocelyn Vargas Baker, 48, was sentenced to four years in state prison for financial exploitation of the elderly in one of the six counts of financial exploitation of an elderly and disabled and theft charges filed against her. She was also sentenced to a two-year mandatory supervision release and is given 628 days credit for time served. She is projected to be released on March 24, 2017 and will be eligible for parole on March 24, 2015.

Carmelita Pasamba’s husband, Edgardo Pasamba, however, did not make any plea last Dec. 22, prompting Judge Claps to set the stage for Edgardo’s jury trial on March 6, 2015. The cases of Edgardo and his wife, Carmelita Pasamba, and Baker are consolidated and heard by Judge Claps. All of them are locked behind bars during the pre-trial.

CHARGED WITH FINANCIAL EXPLOITATION

Carmelita and Edgardo Pasamba as well as Jocelyn Baker were charged criminally by Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez with felony offenses of financial exploitation of a senior citizen, Marshall F. Davies, 94. They spent more than a quarter million dollars of the Davies’ money, giving loans to themselves but never repaying them.

Both Carmelita and Edgardo Pasamba entered into a settlement agreement four months ago with Robert Harris, the Cook County Public Guardian, in the Citation to Recover Assets filed against them before Cook County Probate Court. The couple agreed to return at least $59,600 “restrained” funds that will come from the Healthcare Associates Credit Union of about $8,700; US Bancorp, $8,600; from JP Morgan Chase Bank, $33,900, all under the name of Carmelita Pasamba.

Both Carmelita and Edgardo Pasamba also let the Public Guardian “collect and retain all funds held in the Public Guardian’s escrow styled, “Davies, Marshal Escrow for Mercedes Proceeds” totaling $8,400 representing the sale of the Mercedes Benz SUV purchased by Carmelita and Edgardo Pasamba using Marshall F. Davies’ money.

While the Pasambas also agreed to “continue payment” to Davies and/or heirs of Davies named in the last will and testament, they did not admit to any wrongdoing.

The settlement does not cover other defendants in the probate case. They are Pasambas’ adult son, Dennis Pasamba, Joceclyn Baker and Filipino American lawyer Alfonso Bascos, who prepared the Power of Attorney that enabled Carmelita Pasamba to gain access to the victim’s bank accounts, stocks, bonds, money market, etc.

Told by this reporter that the assets recovered so far from the Pasambas are a little too small from the original missing assets, Public Guardian’s James Burton said, “Since Mr. Bascos remains in the case, and he is not willing to settle this  matter, I will be asking the Court, at the close of trial, to make him liable  for the balance.”

Carmelita Pasamba’s private defense lawyer, Bhatt Purav, did not return calls placed by the Journal GlobaLinks for comment on his client’s sentencing.

Two weeks after Carmelita Pasamba obtained a Power of Attorney, she wrote a check for herself for $30,000 against the victim’s bank account although, she is only entitled to a minimum fee of $8.25 for being a POA. Carmelita overstayed her “Visitor/Working” visa after she entered the U.S. from the Philippines in 1977.

Jocelyn, who is also a CNA, has no record of entry into the U.S., according to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency. They are likely to be deported after serving out their sentences. Edgardo became a green-card holder after entering the U.S. in 1983 on a visitor’s visa.

All the three defendants have no criminal history – no felony or misdemeanor arrests or convictions.

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