This seems to be a trend lately, where law enforcement are cracking down on fake “psychics” defrauding the credulous. This time it’s in Florida, where a woman is in jail for allegedly scamming more than $800,000 from a client over the course of many years.
Peaches T. Miller, 33, of Miami, was arrested Saturday in Florida’s Broward County after Santa Clara County authorities issued a warrant for her arrest on suspicion of grand theft and extortion, with an “aggravated white collar crime” enhancement because the amount involved surpasses half a million dollars. If her extradition is approved at a hearing Thursday, Miller is expected to be transported to California within two weeks.
Nationally, “evil spirit” scams and the like have garnered national headlines in major cities like New York, Chicago and Boston. In San Francisco alone, scammers exploited victims out of $2 million in a string of cases last year. Those cases involved larger rackets, but in the case of the Sunnyvale woman, it was someone working solo and likely exploiting victims that number beyond her.
Deputy district attorney Cherie Bourlard said the local case is one of many fortunetelling scams that come across her desk and should be a cautionary tale for those who might consider turning to a self-proclaimed psychic or fortuneteller for anything more than entertainment.
“This is a big business and it’s all rip-offs,” Bourlard said.
That it is.
Like Dispatches on Facebook: