Rip-Off Alert: Psychic ropes many into fake medallions

KSNV ABC TV-3 News, Nevada/November 9, 2015

By Marie Mortera

Las Vegas — What's the cost of happiness? One psychic convinced many people that is was available for $40.

Postal inspectors in Washington D.C. began investigating this rip-off after thousands of complaints from older victims about the Destiny Research Center and psychic Maria Duval.

The Center guaranteed good fortune by purchasing one of its medallions: “You just hold on to it and you say this prayer every day the same time for 40 days, and you should have happiness.”

The truth?

“Very, very cheap mass produced trinkets from China and Hong Kong,” said U.S. Postal Inspector Clayton Gerber. “The purchase prices would be anywhere from 10 cents to $1.50 or less; they were bought by the tens of thousands.”

The letters did have a small note on the side stating “This solicitation is for promotional purposes only.”

“It was almost impossible for me to read,” Gerber said. “And the elderly victims who received these solicitations surely would have been unable to read it.”

And most of the victims were elderly.

After opening their case, investigators filed an administrative action with the courts to cease Duval from sending this type of mail again.

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