An evil demon sporting a Rolex watch
A fortune teller in Florida and her two relatives are accused of defrauding victims of $59,000.
Bridgette Evans and Polly Evans, as well as Olivia Evans, Polly's daughter, claimed they could cleanse money of evil spirits and demons that were causing illnesses and other problems, and had people send them money to be cleansed, after which they promised to return the money.
The victims sent the funds via Western Union or Moneygram.
In one instance, a victim was told to send a Rolex watch with a prism "to be used as a vortex for demons to return to hell."
The fortune tellers weren't charged with a crime for telling people they could cleanse their cursed money, as odd as that belief might seem. They were charged with mail fraud and wire fraud because they never returned the money.
This type of "money-cleansing" scam, where fortune tellers or gypsies "cleanse" money that has a curse, is an old story. Here's a slightly different evil spirit scam from 1973, told by Texas deputy sheriff Marvin Howard Zindler:
Zindler tells the story this way: A gypsy fortune teller, visited by a woman, told the customer her family was infested with evil spirits and, for a price, the fortune teller would get rid of the spirits. The customer came back, complaining that she was still having problems. The fortune teller replied that now she needed a refrigerator to bury the spirits in. So the unfortunate lady went to the store, bought a refrigerator, and had it delivered to the gypsy. The lady`s husband came home, found the sales slip for the refrigerator and, after hearing his wife`s story, complained to Zindler about the fortune teller. Zindler visited the gypsy and found the refrigerator being used to store food and drinks. He filed the theft charge. “l wouldn't have arrested them if they had buried the refrigerator," Zindler said. He later dismissed the case when the gypsy made full restitution.- Cash 'cleansing' leads to fraud charges against Hollywood fortune teller, Sun Sentinel>>
- Feds: Trio defrauded victims with 'cleansing' money of evil spirits scam, Miami Herald>>
- Marvin Zindler, Consumer Lawman, Texas Monthly, Feb. 1973>>
- The evil demon is actress Geretta Geretta in Mario Bava's 1985 film Demons>>