Manhattan fortune teller Sylvia Mitchell pleaded not guilty to a 16-count indictment on Wednesday. The woman known to many as Zena Clairvoyant is accused of bilking clients our of $150,000. Defense attorneys consider the charges baseless and funds given to the psychic merely payment for services rendered.
The fortune teller is accused of stealing approximately $120,000 Singapore-native Lee Choong, the New York Post reports. Prosecutors have accused Sylvia Mitchell of taking Choong’s money to cleanse the customer of bad spirits.
Prosecutor James Bergamo had this to say about the New York fortune teller case during the hearing:
“This defendant masquerades as a fortune teller, swindling people out of tens of thousands of dollars.”
The second customer turned potential victim went to see Zena Clairvoyant to help clear “blockages” in her life, the New York Daily News notes. Dane Chan reportedly needed guidance about her struggling career and woes stemming from a breakup with her boyfriend. Chan’s $20 palm reading habit allegedly grew so large that she had to work overtime and borrow money to pay for the visits.
Defense attorney Joseph Murray contends that law enforcement investigators engaged in “desperate efforts” to talk satisfied customers that they we were actually victims of a crime. During the Manhattan fortune teller hearing, Murray had this to say about the swindling charges levied against his client:
“This indictment is not worth the paper it is printed on and I look forward to defending my client against this smear campaign being perpetrated against her by the NYPD, and the Manhattan District Attorney’s office.”
Do you think the NYC fortune teller committed a crime or simply offered a service for consenting adults to enjoy if they so chose?
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