Faith healer cons millions of dollars from vulnerable women by promising to reveal winning lottery numbers

Choosing lottery numbers illustration 
By: Mahesh Sarin 

A man was arrested, charged and convicted of fraud and blackmail after coning hundreds of thousands of dollars from vulnerable women, prosecutors in the United Kingdom said.

Now, the bogus faith healer who was convicted of fraud and blackmail for conning vulnerable people in the Leicester area, has been sentenced to serve 9 years in prison.

Mohammed Ashrafi was convicted of 15 counts of fraud and one of blackmail for what CPS East Midlands Chief Crown Prosecutor Steve Chappell described as a cynical campaign of dishonesty.

Ashrafi posed as a faith healer and used charm and tricks to exploit people when they were at their most vulnerable, and made them believe things that they would not ordinarily believe.

This allowed him to deceive them into giving him tens and even hundreds of thousands of dollars. When one victim told him she had no more money to give, he resorted to blackmail.

He was arrested in his apartment in London, where several of the props he had used to trick his victims were found. He promised to reveal winning lottery numbers, but that never materialized.

Steve Chappell, Chief Crown Prosecutor, CPS East Midlands said: “Mohammed Ashrafi ran a sophisticated operation to gain the confidence of his victims and showed no sign of stopping until he was arrested. His cynical campaign of dishonesty has been brought to an end because his victims have stood up in court to expose his lies and deception.”