At Investigation Counsel PC, we have received inquiries about frauds perpetrated by spiritualists and psychics. We have commenced civil recovery prosecutions against such people where the circumstances justify investing in a recovery.
Spiritualism has been defined as a belief that spirits of the dead or other universes have the ability to communicate with the living of our universe. While espousing a belief system is not a form of fraudulent misrepresentation (those who do cite freedom of religion in their defence), we are of the view that representing oneself as a “god” or conveying messages on behalf of a “god” or “spirit” is false and may result in liability for fraud. The other significant concern is that such people engage in extortive conduct. So when a spiritualist claims to communicate on behalf of a spirit, and when the communication is designed to obtain the transfer of money and property, we are of the view that Court may find that such representations are fraudulent.
Our modern reality is that sometimes persons with religious, spiritual, emotional or psychological vulnerabilities will turn to psychics and/or spiritualists when their issues are not resolved by traditional licensed psychologists, therapists and/or religious advisors. Psychics and spiritualists, however, are unregulated in our society, and thus there is a greater opportunity for fraud than is present in traditional spheres of assistance with emotional or psychological issues or religious counselling. Fraud has the opportunity to occur where clients of spiritualists and psychics have vulnerabilities, and when the spiritualists’ fiduciary-type duties succumb to their own greed.
Because of this difficulty in distinguishing between the communication of a belief system, and communicating (channeling) on behalf of a spirit to obtain the transfer of property, cases of fraud by psychics and spiritualists are normally only prosecuted as civil recovery and/or criminal cases when: the fees charged to the victim/client for such services are significantly outside of acceptable ranges charged by licensed psychologists, therapists or religious advisors; and/or the psychic and spiritualist demands the transfer of money, jewellery or other personal property from their victim to prevent some form of harm or to obtain some form of benefit, with a promise to return which does not occur; and/or the psychic and spiritualist demands their victim pay for their lifestyle.
Breach of trust is often an aspect of fraud prosecutions against psychics and spiritualists. By obtaining the trust of victims/clients, the spiritualist or psychic often obtains not only an unfettered view of the person’s vulnerabilities, but also information about their financial assets and resources. When, over time, the spiritualist or psychic obtains control of their victim’s/client’s state of well-being, the opportunity to extort and psychologically coerce the transfer of money, property and lifestyle arises.
At Investigation Counsel PC, we are familiar with investigating and litigating psychic and spiritualist frauds, and we welcome you to contact us to discuss an investigation and a recovery plan.