A company that made fake promises to hundreds of Iowans now has to refund $7,000 to be split amongst their victims. The fraudulent company made fake promises, telling them they would receive money and miracles if they just pay a fee.
The company, Nature Plus Limited, mailed letters from a supposed “clairvoyant” who promised its recipients that they had “ties to spiritual leaders of many world religions” and promised them “riches and life-changing miracles”, according to the statement from Thomas Miller, Iowa Attorney General. The majority of the recipients for these letters were sent to elderly men and women.
The letters they sent were very personalized and were from fake “psychics” named Mary Theresa or Lady of Hearts. They would ask for fees in the range of $20 to $54 and for some of the more naïve and elderly residents, the fees they paid totaled into the hundreds over the course of the scam.
Miller found out about these fraudulent letters thanks to a concerned Iowa woman who learned that the reason her 91-year-old mother was almost broke was because she had been mailing checks to these people who promised her “extraordinary powers, riches, and good health, among other things.” Miller states that because so many of these mail scams are coming from Europe, it is difficult for U.S. law enforcement to take any action.
“This elderly victim’s experience has exposed a very ugly set of practices,” says Miller. “Fake clairvoyants, manipulative mailings, sophisticated networks for targeting vulnerable people- these elements have conspired to cheat thousands of elderly Iowans, and we’re doing what we can to get their money back and keep it from happening again.”
A settlement was reached with Nature Plus Limited and now nearly 325 Iowans will receive refunds. They also prohibited the company from soliciting, either directly or indirectly, to people with an Iowa address.