Gypsies who hand out fliers on the streets of West Hollywood can seem mighty trustworthy, we know; but when they start asking you to buy them gold bars and Mercedes Benzes, we'd hope your inner "This is a freaking scam" buzzer might start to go off.
Unfortunately for one L.A. 37-year-old, an Orange County psychic by the name of Lisa Debbie Adams allegedly plays the fear game better than Jafar's cobra stick:
Though Adams is pleading "not guilty" to grand theft and fraud in court today, she's accused of convincing her customer to drop a total of $200,000 on her services, telling the woman it was the only way to ward off an evil family curse.
Must have been one hell of a hex. O.C. District Attorney Matt Lockhart explains, via City News Service:
The woman was "kind of lonely and her love life was not where she wanted it,'' so she went to the psychic and Adams allegedly told her that for a fee she could rid of her of a curse she inherited while in her mother's womb, Lockhart said. ...
Between June 2008 and August 2009 Adams allegedly directed the woman to withdraw money from an IRA and other sources, including as much as $96,000 once, Lockhart said.
At one point when the victim did not want to work with the so-called
psychic anymore Adams allegedly told her the woman's family would be in danger
if she didn't follow Adams' directions, Lockhart said.
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The 2008-09 payout included $30,000 in gold bars, several credit cards, clothes, furniture, electronics, jewelry and a Mercedes-Benz.
Adams' Linked-In profile, which lists her company as "Lisa Adams Angel Messages" (how sweet!) reads: "I am a psychic reader specializing in self improvement and life coaching."
Also, preying on the paranoid and loveless. But really -- $200,000? Come on, people.