Sophia Adams, a clairvoyant to the stars for more than 40 years, didn’t need a crystal ball to see that her Palos Verdes Estates business had been dealt the proverbial Five of Pentacles, a tarot card that foreshadows impending financial doom.
That much seemed clear when a Los Angeles attorney phoned her husband, George Adams, on Sept. 19, 2021, to relay a threat from a rival who purportedly wanted to push her out of the area so he could expand his psychic reading clientele throughout the South Bay.
“He wants you to get out of the town … or he is going to do something,” the attorney said during the call, a recording of which was obtained by the Southern California News Group.
George Adams, who declined to publicly identify the attorney or the business rival because he fears retaliation, was shaken by the demand to immediately shutter Psychic Love Specialist By Sophia, which has operated in Palos Verdes Estates since 2020 and has counted Joan Rivers, Cher, and actress Delta Burke among its high-profile clientele.
“Jesus!” George Adams exclaimed after the attorney passed along the threat. “I don’t want to go up against (the rival). He’s a big-time guy and I am small time. He’s got more power and he’s very wealthy.”
Two days later, 37-year-old Mauro Restrepo of Inglewood visited Psychic Love Specialist By Sophia for a reading.
And in October 2021, roughly a month later, Restrepo sued Sophia and George Adams along with the psychic’s daughter, Tiffany Winston, and landlords Christ and Polly Koutroumbis for alleged fraud, negligence, emotional distress and civil conspiracy.
Restrepo alleged Sophia Adams falsely promised that, for $5,100, she could remove a curse placed on him at the direction of his ex-girlfriend.
The suit was amended several times due to a lack of evidence and, finally, dropped by Restrepo in May.
Sophia Adams contends the complaint was a sham and a setup from the beginning, claiming Restrepo was working for the business rival and his family members, some of whom are psychics.
“This is all jealousy,” Sophia Adams said, describing the rival and his relatives as part of a “gypsy mafia.” “They want to be the only psychics in the South Bay area and they’re jealous of my company because I’ve been in business for many, many years. I have a good clientele, (or) used to have a good clientele, but nobody’s coming now.”
She declined to elaborate on the possible connection between the rival and Restrepo.
According to the California secretary of state and public records, a man with the same name and age as Restrepo was employed in 2016 as chief financial officer of Herbal Solutions Select, which last listed its address as being in Harbor City.
Records categorize Herbal Solutions Select’s business as “drugs, proprietaries, and sundries.” Its business license was suspended by the Secretary of State’s Office in 2017.
Neither Restrepo nor officials with Herbal Solutions Select could be reached for comment.
A born clairvoyant
Meanwhile, Sophia Adams, a Southern California native, said she was born with psychic gifts that include the ability to receive visions and interpret dreams. She added that as she became older, her supernatural skills became stronger, allowing her to offer psychic, tarot, love and past life readings as well as spells and potions.
Restrepo’s lawsuit states that he, Sophia Adams and the other defendants are members of an ethnic group called the Romani, more commonly known as gypsies, which some consider a racial slur or pejorative.
Gypsies are descendants of people from northern India, originating there about 1,000 years ago, whose culture is steeped in superstition along with a belief in charms, amulets, curses, bad luck and ghosts. They also practice rituals to ward off spirits, according to the lawsuit.
Psyched for the session
Restrepo, who was experiencing personal difficulties, found Sophia Adams’ website on Sept. 17, 2021, and exchanged text messages with her before going to her business in the 800 block of Paseo Lunado in Palos Verdes Estates, according to the lawsuit.
After a Tarot card reading, she told Restrepo he had “mala suerte,” or bad luck, due to the curse placed on him by a witch hired by his ex-girlfriend and that he and his family would be in danger if it wasn’t removed, says the suit.
George Adams said Restrepo’s claim about being cursed with bad luck is a lie and “nonsense.”
According to the complaint, Sophia Adams demanded $5,100 to purchase an expensive crystal to remove the curse from Restrepo, who paid a $1,000 deposit.
Soon after, Restrepo sent a text to Sophia Adams accusing her of fraud, said George Adams, who added that his wife offered to return the deposit without success.
Although George Adams remains fearful of the business rival who threatened him, he’s determined to protect his wife’s reputation.
“He thought he could scare us to get out,” George Adams said. “For the past 40 years, Sophia has never had a complaint or ever been in any type of trouble regarding her business. She has a clean record.”