As per local media reports, a Florida woman who claimed to be a psychic was sentenced to three years in federal prison for scamming a Texas woman. The victim paid $1.6 million to the 'fortune teller' to lift a 'curse'. The scam victim was reportedly suffering from depression after her mother's death and took the fortune teller's help, believing it would solve her difficulties and unhappiness.
Sherry Tina Uwanawich, 28, who goes by the name Jacqueline Miller had met the victim in Houston, 2007 and learned that she was a medical student from Brazil. The student had recently lost her mother. Uwanawich managed to gain her trust and convince the woman that a curse has been placed upon her and her family by someone from South America and would cause harm if not lifted.
Their friendship lasted seven years during which Uwanawich asked for large sums of money from the woman so that she could buy items like crystals and candles to perform meditations to remove curse. The paid cash reportedly included student loans the woman had obtained, plus thousands of dollars from her inheritance following the death of her father.
Even after the conwoman moved to South Florida, in Fort Lauderdale, the victim reportedly kept sending some money to Uwanawich from Houston to South Florida by Western Union wire transfer. This put the fraud in the wire fraud column and made the case eligible for federal court.
In 2014, Uwanawich revealed that there was no curse, reprtedly admitting that she came from a family in which “fortune telling” was part of the 'tradition' and claimed that she wanted to break from that lifestyle. Upon hearing this, the victim approached the police. Uwanawich had previously plead guilty to a wire fraud, where reports show she was diagnosed with schizophrenia. She was also ordered to pay compensation to the victim.