POLICE are investigating claims a fake spiritual healer based in Hounslow has conned victims out of tens of thousands of pounds.
The alleged fraudster, going by the name Guru Ji, is believed to have told several unsuspecting clients they were due a big lottery win.
He persuaded them to hand over huge sums of money so he could perform magic known as 'puja', using deer musk, to ensure their lucky numbers would come up. However, when they visited his address in Hanworth Road, Hounslow (on March 27), he had vanished, taking their money with him.
One woman told the Chronicle today how she had handed over £18,000 during the last year and claimed another victim had been duped out of £110,000.
A 46-year-old mum, who lives near Hounslow Heath, first saw an advert for his services early last year, in which he offered his assistance as a spiritual healer and astrologer free of charge.
It read: "Do you feel that you, your family or business are affected by blockages and evil eye. Don't worry. Have them removed through spiritual prayers."
She was suspicious but decided to contact him because she was willing to try anything to cure her health problems and help her son get into university. When she visited his address in Hounslow, he said someone had performed black magic on her but promised to get rid of it for free.
During a later visit, he boiled six eggs with her name and those of her loved ones written on them.
When he cracked the egg bearing her name, he pulled out a lottery slip with certain details filled in, which he declared as proof she was due a £15 million lottery win. However, he told her for the premonition to come true he would have to perform 'puja' magic using highly expensive deer musk.
He asked for £15,000 but when she said she could only afford £8,200, he agreed to personally cover the remainder.
Over the following months, as her projected winnings escalated rapidly to £150 million, she handed over a further £10,000, taking out loans and borrowing from her father to fund the cost.
However, when she and her son turned up at Guru Ji's address yesterday (Wednesday, March 27), two days before their numbers were due to come in, he was nowhere to be seen. Instead they found several other angry victims, all of whom had fallen for the same trick and had, between them, parted with many tens of thousands of pounds.
"I wasn't even interested in the lottery when I visited him. I just wanted to sort out my health problems and help my son get into university," said Ms Kaur.
"I was sceptical at first but he preyed on my emotions and really brainwashed us. I believed what he said because my health was improving, things were getting better at work and my son had got into university, so whatever he was doing seemed to be working.
"One of his other victims sold all her gold jewellery to pay him and another re-mortgaged her house. He's targeting vulnerable people with family issues and getting them to hand over everything they have. We want to make sure he doesn't get away with it again."
Hounslow Police today confirmed they were investigating several allegations of fraud.
Anyone with information is asked to call Hounslow CID on 020 8247 6160 and ask to speak to DS Suj Khera or DC Kerry Sullivan.