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Roupell case

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The Roupell case (1862) was a notorious English legal dispute that centred around legal documents alleged to have been forged by William Roupell and excited great public interest.

William Roupell was the illegitimate son of Richard Palmer Roupell who possessed extensive properties in London and the Home Counties. By 1853, William, who spent unwisely seeking to establish himself in fashionable society, was already in debt and launched a sequence of deceptions and forgeries, dishonestly to obtain much of his father's property. In particular, he forged a deed conveying Norbiton Estate to himself and then sold it to Mr Waite. Further, he destroyed his father's will, which had left much of his property to William's brother Richard, and forged a will leaving it to William's mother, with himself as executor. His father died in 1856 and in 1857 William was elected Liberal Party Member of Parliament for Lambeth.

By 1862, William was no longer able to service the mortgages that he had taken out on the misappropriated property and on 30 March destroyed some of his papers and fled to Spain. In August, his brother Richard visited him in Spain and William returned to England. He was recognised and arrested for fraud and forgery.

A number of court cases followed which are detailed on the Wikipedia page [1]

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