Thursday, December 6, 2012

Ontario Man Charged with Witchcraft Fraud

The Toronto Star has a story on an Ontario man named Gustavo Valencia Gomez who has been charged with the rare offence of fraudulently practising witchcraft.  According to the story, Gomez is alleged to have persuaded a 56-year-old woman that she was under a curse and that her children were in grave danger.  Allegedly, Gomez received more than $ 14,000 from the woman for a serious of spiritual interventions involving elaborate rituals to remove the curse.

The Canadian Criminal Code retains a provision specifically directed to witchcraft and fortune telling, and I think the provision raises some very interesting issues relating to freedom of religion that I hope to write about some time in the future.

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