On April 27, on Bay 22nd Street and 86th Street, 44-year-old Xuekun Su successfully convinced a female 61-year-old Chinese immigrant that either her or a member of her family would die from a curse that had been set on them.
In order to get rid of the curse, Su and a group of other individuals posing as clairvoyants convinced the victim, she needed to gather large sums of cash and jewels to be blessed. Only then would the evil spirits surrounding her family be removed.
After the blessing, Su and the clairvoyants said, the jewels and money would be returned.
So, the victim gathered approximately $140,000 in cash and numerous pieces of 24-karat gold jewelry, according to the District Attorney’s report.
A blessing ritual was then performed in which Su and the others told the victim to put her cash and jewels into a bag, which she was instructed not to open for many days. When the victim opened the bag that evening, she found her cash and jewelry was gone. She went to the police.
A second incident involving Su took place just two months later, on June 22, in Sunset Park. Su again targeted an older, female Chinese immigrant. The same ritual with the cash and jewelry was performed — this time the woman was able to collect $19,000 in cash — only for the victim to find that the cash and jewels had disappeared from her curse-breaking bag.
In a press release sent out today, it was announced that Su has been indicted on charges of grand larceny as a hate crime and other charges for stealing a total of approximately $160,000 cash as well as the numerous pieces of jewelry in two separate incidents.
The defendant’s bail has been set at $150,000 cash or $250,000 bond. If convicted on her court date, set for December 21, Su faces up to 25 years in prison.
In the press release, Acting District Attorney Gonzalez urged the Chinese community members to warn friends and family members to be wary of such “blessing scams“.
Bensonhurst has been plagued by “cursed jewelry” scams of this nature since 2013. The thieves often speak to their Chinese immigrant victims in Cantonese to earn their trust. Police have warned residents to be vigilant and not to trust anyone who offers to rid their valuables of evil spirits.