42-year-old self-proclaimed psychic Ann Thompson was previously arrested for scamming two clients out of $800,000. She now has another arrest under her belt after being hauled off to jail on August 16th after it was discovered that she conned over a dozen other victims.
The New Jersey native pleaded not guilty to 17 counts at the Manhattan Supreme Court Thursday morning. These counts include forgery, grand larceny, and scheme to defraud.
The prosecutor in the case, Michael Lumley, stated that over the last five years, Thompson had tricked more than a dozen unsuspecting victims into giving her over $1 million dollars.
Thompson worked out of a psychic storefront called “Psychic Zoe” located on West 35th Street near Seventh Avenue in Manhattan. The complaint states that she would con her victims by making them believe that they suffered from several psychic maladies that she could cure for them, at a hefty price.
The fraudulent psychic scammed a Canadian woman out of about $740,000 by convincing her to buy gold coins that she then put inside of a temporary, makeshift temple, and that would “help protect her from danger”, according to the complaint.
Lumley referred to Thompson as a “con artist” who preyed on vulnerable customers and requested that the judge, Justice Gregory Carro, raise the $50,000 bail.
Thompson’s defense lawyer, Robert Gottlieb, defended her by referring to her as a “spiritual adviser” and claimed that a lot of her clients wouldn’t even cooperate with the Manhattan District Attorney’s investigation because they saw her as a personal friend.
Gottlieb also stated that Thompson was not a flight risk and that she rarely ever leaves the state. Lumley, however, has examined and researched over five years’ worth of Thompson’s financial records and argued against Gottlieb’s claim.
“There are expenditures out of state all the time,” he said. “They go to casinos. They go to Atlantic City all the time.”
Justice Carro stated that these new charges could cause Thompson to serve a lengthy prison sentence before proceeding to increase her bond to $250,000.