For those wondering if the life of a celebrity psychic would be filled with spiritual connections and pleasant encounters, think again – as the death of Derek Acorah has uncovered an ugly side to the industry.
News of the television star’s sudden death at the age of 69 on Friday left fans shocked as Derek’s wife declared on Facebook: “Farewell my love! I will miss you forever! I’m devastated to announce that my beloved husband Derek has passed away.”
However she also drew attention to the bitter, back-stabbing side of the psychic industry as she added in her statement: “To the vile couple who hounded him for responses to their ridiculous campaign whilst he was in Intensive Care in a coma, I hope you have the decency to hang your heads in shame.”
Gwen was referencing a rival psychic and her partner who targeted Derek as they claimed the TV star had sent messages to fans and clients claiming to be able to connect them to deceased family members and friends.
The couple have run a campaign online against Derek and other psychics claiming they upset fans and customers by trying to reveal secrets and messages of dead relatives.
However psychics and their colleagues have long had each other in their sights as the community appears more than ready to argue amongst itself over what should be considered correct practice.
Some clairvoyants have been caught out for seemingly faking information in relation to the the dead – one example being Leeds based psychic Lillyanne.
The raven haired star (who has featured on television) was rumbled in 2016 when grieving fans paid to receive “letters from heaven” from deceased family members – only to find they received “identical” responses from the psychic.
A mother-of-five named Karen Branning from Scotland was shocked when the letter she received made reference to her late mother loving flowers, when she knew her mother hated flowers.
After taking to another of Lillyanne’s followers names Sue, the pair swapped letters from the psychic only to discover they notes were “the same” except for “significant dates” which had been changed.
A spokesperson for Lillyanne (whose real name is Paula Barstow) had said the letters had been sent due to clerical error and Karen and Sue were compensated.
Derek Acorah was duped into slipping up himself while working on hit show Most Haunted – being fooled into claiming to channel a spirit called Greed Kafer, which was revealed to be an anagram of “Derek Faker”.
The TV star was booted from the show – and host Yvette Fielding twisted the knife after he was exposed by explaining why he was gone from future episodes stating: “We tell people everything is real, then it turns out he was a fake, so he had to go.”
Meanwhile, Derek was also once involved in a feud with illusionist Derren Brown – who accused the late star of being a fraud.
Derren, 48, is believed to have taken pot shots at Derek during his live shows where he would reveal the secrets and tricks medium’s use to dupe paying customers into believing they are communicating with the dead.
This led to a bust up when Derek and Derren crossed paths in a Swansea hotel in May 2006 – with none other than Myleene Klass being forced to step in to break up the argument.
“Derren came over to say hello but Derek looked peeved and asked… ‘Why are you always slagging me off?’” an eyewitness told The Sun at the time.
“Derren replied ‘That’s the way I am. I’ve never seen your show but I’ve reservations about you’,” the witness continued.
It was reported that Derek’s Ghost Towns co-host Myleene, 41, stepped in to calm the situation.
“Myleene told Derren to leave Derek alone. She said, ‘You’re obviously threatened by him’,” the witness claimed.