Three exorcists from Fort Lauderdale need some holy deliverance of their own.
After allegedly scamming almost $60,000 from victims they claimed were possessed, Bridget (36), Polly (32), and 22 year old Olivia Evans (sister, mother, and daughter, respectively), are facing federal mail and wire fraud charges which could land them 20 years in prison.
Bridget, who was arrested last week and thought to be the ringleader of the scam, is a fortune teller in Broward County, who from 2007 to 2009 (and presumably longer), would convince her victims that he or she was possessed by evil spirits, and persuade them to be ritually cleansed. It all seems fairly standard practice for an exorcism, which is most definitely legal, even if the client pays for it.
So where did the Evans’ go wrong? Well, they didn’t exactly ask for payment. Instead, they told the victim that their money “needed cleansing” as well, and would be returned to them after the ritual was complete. In one instance, they even insisted that a Rolex watch was needed “to be used as a vortex for demons to return to hell.” They kept the watch.
At first glance this might have been an interesting case to watch, but I wouldn’t expect anyone needing to prove to a court that demons were expelled. Thanks to Evans’ clause about returning the “cleansed” money, this case is purely about stolen cash now.
For more on the exorcism scam, check out NBC Miami.