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Wig for sale on the cheap: one witchdoctor former owner

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Freshly-called lawyers could save a few quid by picking up second hand horsehair that a bogus witchdoctor is flogging after £1 million swindling spree

WitchDoctor

A Crown Court judge has forced a purported witchdoctor to flog a barrister’s wig to compensate victims for a string of frauds valued at more than £1 million.

Apart from providing scores of victims with some solace, the order — made at London’s Southwark Crown Court by Judge Ian Karsten QC — will cheer one lucky junior barrister, who won’t have to shell out for an expensive new horsehair.

The wig is expected to fetch up to £250 — still markedly less than the £500-plus demanded by purveyors of the brand new variety.

According to Court News UK, 60-year-old Juliette D’Souza ran a nice line in convincing vulnerable punters she was a witchdoctor, who could cure all sorts of ailments, provided they got their chequebooks out.

As part of the operation, D’Souza apparently made bizarre shrines in her home to fool her victims — one of which incorporated a brand new barrister’s wig.

At her original trial down the river at Blackfriars Crown Court, a jury heard that D’Souza promised gullible victims that a duo of friendly shamans called Pa and Oma would hang their donated money from a “magical tree” deep in the Amazonian rainforest. Presumably, they then were meant to do a little jig and all prayers would be answered.

In reality, the money was going straight under D’Souza’s bed. And there appears to be a lot of mugs out there. She is reported to have splurged £1.5 million on flights, antique furniture, designer handbags and rent on several north London flats.

At the Southwark confiscation hearing, Judge Karsten instructed D’Souza — who is now serving a 10-year jail sentence — to pay back £133,878.85, which Court News UK points out is “a fraction of the millions of pounds she is thought to have made in her criminal career”.

In a bid to salve some of the victims’ financial pain, the judge ordered the bogus witchdoctor to flog an antique jewellery collection and her car — as well as the wig.