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Published on December 21st, 2012 | by Orawan Gardner


Peter Popoff

Shameful act: Peter Popoff is self-proclaimed faith healer and prophet. He rose to prominence in the 1980s by preaching the “gospel of prosperity” on TV, promising cash rewards directly from God to his supporters. In 1987, James Randi, a stage magician and skeptic, exposed Popoff as a fraud, demonstrating how he used a radio earpiece to receive information from his wife gleaned from prayer cards to deceive people into thinking he could somehow divine secret information about them out of thin air.

Penalty: After Randi’s exposé aired on The Tonight Show, Popoff lost most of his supporters and had to file for bankruptcy.

Where is he now? By the late 1990s, Popoff recovered and started preaching impossible financial and medical miracles again, this time targeting the black community. Popoff continues to preach and sell miracle products on the BET network and through the mail to this day.

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About the Author

Orawan Gardner

Orawan was formerly a project associate who produced written and visual content for Orawan was an AmeriCorps VISTA member and studied film at Vassar College, where she received her B.A.

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