A woman has been jailed for keeping another woman in slavery for more than four years.

Maria Miller, 65, of Simmons Lane, Chingford, made a woman, now 74, sleep on the floor and carry out tasks such as weeding the garden or clearing out animal shelters in exchange for meals or access to the home.

Miller also took control of the victim's bank account, made herself the sole trustee in the victim's will and tried to persuade the pensioner to sell a property she owned.

She would also refuse the victim access to her mobile phone, money and pension.

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The home of Maria Miller, who has been jailed for keeping a slave for years. Photo: Met Police

The 65-year-old was found guilty of two counts of holding another in slavery or servitude and one count of theft on June 21. She was sentenced at Snaresbrook Crown Court today (Friday, August 30) to three years in prison.

The court heard Miller met the victim outside a pet shop and invited her to volunteer in her charity shop.

In 2012, she persuaded the woman, who has learning difficulties, to move into her home address.

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The home of Maria Miller. Photo: Met Police

The victim was forced to sleep on the floor or in an outhouse and was often refused meals for a number of days. As a result, she lost a significant amount of weight.

However, on June 14, 2016, she managed to run away and reported the abuse to police.

Police began an investigation and arrested Miller on July 14, 2016. She was released on bail before being charged on November 16, 2018.

Detective Sergeant James Earle, who led the investigation, said: “Miller targeted one of society’s most vulnerable and the sentence received today reflects the gravity of her actions.

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The inside of Miller's home. Photo: Met Police

“This was a long and challenging investigation but we are pleased that Miller has now been brought to justice.

“We know that the victim will never forget the years she spent in constant fear but we hope that she has some closure now Miller is behind bars.

“Her bravery in coming forward to police and reliving some of the worst experiences of her life in court is testament to her strength of character and we hope this sends out a message that the MPS will seek to bring the strongest charges for such shocking criminal conduct where appropriate.”