fortune-teller with a shining crystal ballThe variety of personal stories we hear at is endless, probably because humans are fallible and gullible. Unless you have been very down on your luck, depressed and worried about your future, you might not understand how a grown adult could be swindled by a wanna-be psychic. But Eric, a struggling actor, was not only conned by a psychic prankster, he was ripped off, to the tune of $30,000.00.

In Eric’s defense, he saved money for a long time in order to pursue acting. He also moved across the country to be amongst agents and producers. For a couple of years, Eric found work. He was cast in a short-lived sitcom and a few commercials. But then, Eric’s luck dried up. In a desperate effort to find hope, Eric visited a psychic.

In his very fragile mental state, this psychic managed to convince Eric that he was the victim of a family curse. She talked him into giving her $30,000 temporarily, promising to alleviate the curse and promptly return the cash. We don’t need to tell you that Eric never again saw the 30 grand, do we?

With a combination of antidepressants from his doctor and two opportunities in commercials, Eric escaped the mental fog and realized that he had been swindled. He immediately went to the police. Even if he couldn’t get back his money, he wanted the psychic out of business. But police said there wasn’t enough evidence to file charges.

Eric contacted an attorney who called . A female investigator posed as a distraught heiress who had recently lost her wealthy parents. During each visit, our investigator used covert surveillance equipment to record interactions while the psychic requested large amounts of cash to again “rid the family” of a supposed curse. Listening devices weren’t the only investigative tool used.

Electronic surveillance cameras were fitted to the investigator so that actual date and time-stamped footage could be gathered. Since staff is highly trained in the legal requirements regarding admissibility of evidence in court, all information gathered is handled within a strict protocol.

Using digital forensics and social media engineering, other investigators began to dig into the psychic’s background. Five former clients, all swindled out of money, had unsuccessfully tried to bring charges against the psychic.

By the end of our investigation, Eric had more than enough solid evidence to take to the police and file charges. The scammer was not only put out of business but ended up in jail, too.

-Brenda McGinley, CEO, All in Investigations, All in Investigations