Skeptic News: Elderly woman is duped in miracle healing scam

From: Boston and Beyond Now

An elderly woman was duped in a miracle healing scam in Chinatown, giving a bag of money and jewelry to three suspects who said her son was in danger, and getting a bag containing rice, water, and a newspaper in return, Boston police said in a statement.

The woman was walking on Harrison Avenue and Beach Street in Chinatown Sunday when she was approached by the three female suspects, police said. One suspect asked the woman about a miracle healer. The woman said she knew nothing about the healer, police said. A second suspect said she knew where the healer was and asked the woman to follow them, police said. The woman refused — until the suspects started talking about spirits in her home and told her that her son was in danger, police said. They told the woman to get all of her valuables and meet them near the Hei La Moon restaurant at 88 Beach St., police said. If she didn’t, something bad would happen to the woman’s son, the suspects told her.

The woman went home to get cash and jewelry and met the suspects at the specified location, police said. The suspects handed the woman a plastic bag, which she filled with her valuables and passed back, police said. The three suspects handed the woman a black plastic bag and told her to put it in a safe place and not open it for a month.

The woman opened the bag some time later and discovered a newspaper, some rice, and a bottle of water, police said. She then contacted Boston police.

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