Police: Thief claimed items were cursed

Oct. 20, 2011 at 12:01 PM

TOMSK, Russia, Oct. 20 (UPI) -- Russian authorities said they have arrested a woman accused of stealing valuables under the guise of removing curses from the objects.

Police in Tomsk, in western Siberia, said the Ukrainian woman, whose name was not released, claimed to be a fortuneteller, faith healer and curse remover, RIA Novosti reported Thursday.

"Ivanko, as she called herself, told people their future and was interested in any valuable things they had on them," police said. "Then she would announce that exactly these belongings carried a curse and took them away for 'curse removal.'"

Authorities said the woman fled to Moscow, where she was arrested and the stolen items were recovered. The woman is currently back in Tomsk awaiting trial, police said.

The valuables she is accused of stealing include mink coats, cellphones, a laptop computer, gold jewelry and high-end boots.

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