Fortunetellers slip out of fraud charges

Here is an update to a psychic fraud story from January.

Fortuneteller fraud: Charges won’t be filed against fortuneteller who agreed to pay customer back $50,000 – OrlandoSentinel.com.

Overwhelmed by problems, Priti Mahalanobis consulted a fortuneteller who told her there was a curse on her family.

After spending nearly $136,000 in cash, gift cards and jewelry to have Windermere psychic “Miss Starr” remove the hex, Mahalanobis came to the conclusion that she had been swindled.

In November 2011, Peaches Stevens — the psychic’s real name — was arrested on fraud charges.

All charges were dropped in September after Stevens agreed to give Mahalanobis and her husband a full refund of $135,898.60.

And, Sharon Stevens, professionally known as Sarah Stevens, Peaches’ aunt, was arrested last week on charges of scheming to defraud and grand theft. She will also reimburse her unsatisfied client.

Their lawyer said “Both of my clients are excellent people who offer excellent services.”

What?

This is unsatisfying and more than a bit annoying! What is to prevent either Stevens’ from trying this again with someone else? As our tipster asks, why they were given a choice by the state prosecutor to return money? If it was obtained through fraud why was she not prosecuted?

It’s good that these victims got their money back but this is a weak resolution.

Tip: David Wood

  4 comments for “Fortunetellers slip out of fraud charges

  1. RDW
    March 9, 2013 at 12:23 PM

    I agree that they should have been prosecuted and even sued for the trouble they caused. If they’re let off the hook, they’ll just do it again. ALL of the money those shysters stole should be taken away and an attempt made to give it back to the people it was stolen from.

  2. One Eyed Jack
    March 9, 2013 at 8:10 PM

    I think I’ll take up bank robbery. If I get caught, I’ll just give the money back and try again. Sounds like a plan.

  3. March 10, 2013 at 3:48 AM

    Most people’s lives are ruled by superstitions of one sort or another. There will be a reason for the court’s decision in this case, everything has a cause.

  4. One Eyed Jack
    March 10, 2013 at 2:12 PM

    Most people’s lives are ruled by superstitions of one sort or another

    I was about to object to the use of “mos”t, but then I thought about religion.

    Is the way your average church bilks followers through fear of damnation and a promise of salvation all that different from what Stevens does?

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