Florida family charged in $40 million psychic scam – Yahoo! News
In all, authorities said, the family amassed a $40 million fortune from a psychic scam dating back 20 years.
They used “magicians’ tricks” to frighten victims, who lived as far away as Denmark and Japan, to give them the money, prosecutors said. The victims included a best-selling author who gave $20 million.
Marks, 60, and eight family members pleaded not guilty last week. Their lawyers said they believe their Gypsy religion gave them the ability to heal psychically and that business was legitimate.
“They try to do that and they get paid for it,” defense attorney Fred Schwartz said.
Marks moved her family to Florida 13 years ago. Her children and grandchildren moved into her posh, waterfront home in Fort Lauderdale after her husband died of brain cancer in 2006.
Often using the alter ego “Joyce Michael,” the women of the family extracted valuables from their victims to support their lavish lifestyle, prosecutors said. Neighbors saw luxury cars coming and going, but saw little of the family.
Their nearby business, Astrology Life, advertised life coaching and $20 special readings.
Strange Random Psychic Quote:
“If it’s the Psychic Network why do they need a phone number?” – Robin Williams (American actor)
- Florida family charged in $40 million psychic scam (seattletimes.nwsource.com)
- Fla. Family Charged in $40 Million Scam (time.com)
- Best-Selling Author and Grieving Mother Loses $20 Million to ‘Psychics’ [Scams] (gawker.com)
- Psychic scam a $40 million Fort Lauderdale-family affair, feds allege – Fort Lauderdale – MiamiHerald.com (claytonglasco.wordpress.com)
- Feds: ‘Psychic’ Family Scammed $40M (newser.com)
- Fort Lauderdale Psychics Swindle $40 Million (buzz103.radio.com)
- Bad fortune for busted psychics (nydailynews.com)