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Magician’s magic is in conning restaurants, then disappearing

Date Posted: 2007-12-14

It’s happened at least nine times in Naha City restaurants, where a man orders and consumes a large meal, then declares to the staff and other patrons he’s a magician, offering to perform some tricks.
The latest incident Sunday had the man eat a ¥5,000 meal, then tell other customers “I’m a magician and would like to show my magic. Can I borrow ¥10,000 yen in paper money?” People gave him ¥30,000, and he went through the motion of performing. Suddenly, he declared “Oh, sorry, I can’t” and then raced out of the restaurant.
The staff, expecting their ¥30,000 to be returned, was stunned and immediately called police, but it was too late. The magician was successful in disappearing. Police say they’ve no idea where he went.
Police say they think all con incidents were by the same man. In each case, he ordered food and went through his routine. His highest food bill at one restaurant was ¥10,000. Officers say the man is a criminal, and vow they will catch him.

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