Tuesday, July 18, 2006

One lord a-leaping

Bogus aristocrat to be sent back to his family in Florida
By Paul Thompson in Tampa, Florida
(Filed: 17/07/2006)

A man who posed as a British aristocrat before being exposed as a former American serviceman is to be deported from the UK and banned from returning for at least five years.
Charles Stopford, 44, who had claimed to be Christopher Buckingham, will be a free man when he sets foot on US soil. He was last seen by his parents and eight brothers and sisters in 1983 when he disappeared, telling them that he was travelling around the world.
They were unaware that he had settled in Britain, married and had two children, Lyndsey, now 20, and Edward, 17, and had adopted the bogus title of Lord Buckingham.
The family say Stopford has told them that a car accident had wiped out his memory of his life in America.
Stopford grew up in Orlando and left the US abruptly after being accused of plotting to blow up his boss at a fast food restaurant.
He was arrested in Dover 18 months ago during a routine passport check on his way back from France.
Stopford had stolen the identity of a dead baby in a ploy taken from the thriller The Day of the Jackal and he later adopted the Lord Buckingham title. He had convinced his Canadian-born wife, Jody, that he had inherited the title.
Daily Telegraph


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