October 2, 2001

On Thursday, September 27, 2001, Gregory L. Arsenault, 39, of Portland, pleaded guilty on September 27 to one count of Misuse of Entrusted Property (Class D) in Cumberland County District Court. Arsenault had power of attorney for his elderly mother, who suffers from dementia and resides in a Portland nursing home. Arsenault engaged in internet sports gambling, betting with his own credit card. He then used his mother's money to pay his credit card bill. He also used his mother's money on trips to a casino in Connecticut and to take a cruise on the Scotia Prince with his girlfriend. The most egregious aspect of the case-the loss of over $80,000 in risky day trading of stock--was not prosecutable because he was technically authorized to make legal investments.

Arsenault was sentenced to 180 days in jail, all but 10 days suspended, with one year probation. He must pay $4,177.26 in restitution. He will not be allowed to benefit from the sale of his mother's remaining asset: her home.

The case was prosecuted by Cumberland County Assistant District Attorney Deborah Chmielewski and investigated by Detective Mark Walsh, the elder financial exploitation investigator in the Attorney General's Office. DHS Adult Protective Caseworkers Julie Martin and Andrea Lee helped prepare the case for filing.

Detective Walsh said that the case is not uncommon.