Skepfeeds-The Best Skeptical blogs of the day

2 sought for allegedly taking $62,000 in ‘cursed money’ in psychic healing scam

Posted in Skepdude by Skepdude on April 22, 2010

READ THE FULL STORY AT THE CHICAGO TRIBUNE

When she saw the “for rent” sign in the Far Northwest Side home, a Park Ridge woman realized the mother-daughter team of self-described psychic healers had not taken her money to cleanse it of evil spirits — they stole it.

Laura Santini, 61, and her daughter, Rosann, 35, were indicted this week in Cook County on felony theft charges for allegedly scamming the woman of $62,000. The two haven’t been seen in more than a year, authorities said.

“They basically were able to convince the victim that some money she had gotten was cursed money and that somehow that curse had transferred to other money that she had,” said Chicago police Detective Milorad Sofrenovic of the Grand Central area. “They told her that in order to be able to remove this curse, they needed to take this money physically to a shrine in Indiana and with prayers drive the curse from the money.”

The alleged scam began in early 2007 when a flurry of fliers began peppering car windshields on the Far Northwest Side and nearby suburbs.

“One does not live without problems such as love, health, marriage and business,” the flier read. “Why endure them when a gifted psychic can help you with whatever your problem may be?”

READ THE FULL STORY AT THE CHICAGO TRIBUNE

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A not-so-innocent obsession

Posted in Skepdude by Skepdude on April 8, 2010

The following account of one woman’s obsession with psychics and her downfall and ruin of her personnal life is remarkable. What’s the harm in psychics? Read the story of  Samantha Brick and you will have your answer.

The floaty voice of the designer-clad woman urged me to ‘let my worries go  –  empty your mind and then focus on what you want to ask the cards’. Gingerly, I took the tarot pack she handed to me.

Sitting opposite me was one of Britain’s leading psychics. Everyone I worked with in TV said her predictions were 100 per cent accurate. That was enough for me: I was hooked.

‘Think, Sam,’ I told myself. ‘Think what you really want to know.’ I handed the pack back to the psychic, Angelica, and prepared to listen to her prophecies: my future was in her hands. She stared at the first card, then let out a shriek of surprise.

SEC says ‘psychic’ scammed investors

Posted in News by Skepdude on March 10, 2010

READ THE FULL ARTICLE AT THE NYPOST

Too bad he couldn’t foresee getting caught.

Federal regulators filed suit today against a self-proclaimed psychic who allegedly scammed $6 million by conning suckers into believing that his extrasensory abilities would make them “piles of money” by trading foreign currencies.

Sean David Morton — who bills himself as “America’s Prophet” — “falsely touted his historical success in psychically predicting the various rises and falls of the market,” according to the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The California-based huckster — whose Web site shows him posing with celebs including Sting, Robin Williams and the late Farrah Fawcett — solicited investors on late-night radio shows and at the 2006 “New Life Expo” in New York City, the Manhattan federal court filing says.

READ THE FULL ARTICLE AT THE NYPOST

Woman kills psychic over failed love spell

Posted in Skepdude by Skepdude on February 16, 2010

A clearly not all sane woman has killed a psychic over the later’s failed attempt to bring the woman’s lover back into her arms.

Tanya Nelson, from North Carolina, and her alleged accomplice Phillipe Zamora are accused of stabbing the psychic Jade Smith, 57, and her daughter Anita Vo, 23, to death in April 2005, US media report.

It is alleged Miss Nelson, 45, became angry with her fortune teller friend after she was unable to use her magical powers to get Miss Nelson’s ex-lover to return to her.

Miss Smith wrote to Miss Nelson to say she could not change reality.

Clearly there is a risk in misleading people to think that you have amazing, paranormal powers. The really crazy ones can take it literally and become violent, like Mrs. Nelson did. However, there seems to be a bit of a disconnect between claiming psychic powers and claiming of not being able to change reality. Reality forbids the existence of psychic powers; either you’re bound by reality’s rules or not. Clearly Mrs. Nelson thought that reality could be bent to her advantage. What is not clear from the article though is if the victim had claimed to be able to do the deed that Mrs. Nelson expected of her; or if Nelson had demanded it done and Miss Smith had told her that she couldn’t. Either way I hope Mrs. Nelson gets what she deserves. No ex-lover is worth 2 human lives!

LA Psychic Makes Claim On Cantu Reward Money

Posted in News by Skepdude on May 1, 2009

TRACY, Calif. — A Los Angeles psychic is claiming she should receive some of the reward money in the Sandra Cantu case because of her predictions.

Dani Pedlow says she was contacted by a Tracy resident and sent her text and e-mail messages.

Pedlow says she described the location of Cantu’s body to the woman and said that Cantu was killed in a church.

Tracy police say they never had any contact with Pedlow and didn’t use any information from psychics during the investigation.

They say an anonymous tipster already has received more than $20,000 for finding the suitcase with Sandra Cantu’s body in it.

READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE AT “KTVU.COM”

Psychic pleads no contest to bilking old woman

Posted in News by Skepdude on February 10, 2009

The victim began visiting Adams’ Psychic and Crystal Vision shop in the Laurelwood Shopping Center in San Mateo in January 2008, prosecutor Steve Wagstaffe said.

On her third visit, Adams began to shake and cry, telling the woman that her husband would die of a heart attack if she didn’t immediately pay $13,000 for “special prayers,” Wagstaffe said.

The woman promptly went to the bank and got the money, authorities said.

At the woman’s next visit, Adams told her that her own husband needed money for treatment or would die, Wagstaffe said. The woman gave her $9,000.

READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE AT ” THE SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE”