"INTERNET LAW BOOK REVIEWS" Provided by Rob Jerrard LLB LLM (London)

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John Blake Publishing Limited Books Reviewed in 2009


Jack the Ripper - Unmasked
Edition: 1st
Format: Paperback
Author: William Beadle
ISBN: 9781844546886
Publishers: John Blake Publishing Ltd
Price: 17.99
Publication Date: Jan 2009
 
Publisher's Title Information
 

Had the Jack the Ripper murders taken place in 1988 not 1888 then our response to them would have been markedly different. Since those dark days in Victorian London we have learnt much about this type of killer: their damaged childhoods, misfit adulthoods and psychopathic alienation from the human race. But can this new knowledge help to solve a mystery that has been eluding generations of policemen and historians?
 
By comparing the crimes of the Ripper with those of other serial killers, Ripper expert William Beadle creates the most extensive psychological profile of the man behind Jack the Ripper. One suspect who embodied all these dire characteristics was William Henry Bury. Bury moved to the East End of London in 1887. He had a terrible childhood, he was a horsemeat butcher, and he had a violent relationship with his wife. But was Bury the Ripper?
 
Beadle uses his Ripper psychological profile in conjunction with newly unearthed evidence: Bury was out all night on the dates of the murders, and when his wife 'committed suicide' she had been strangled and her body ripped up in the same way as the Ripper's victims. When Bury was executed for the murder of his wife, the killings in the East End stopped. A Scotland Yard detective even conceded to the hangman that he was 'quite satisfied you have hanged Jack the Ripper'.
 
In this compelling account, William Beadle presents a fresh body of incriminating evidence that could finally answer the question of the true identity of the infamous Jack the Ripper.
 
Modern profiling provides the tools to identify Jack the Ripper` An American study of 36 sexually-motivated killers found that 86 per cent came from stable economic backgrounds and that 80 per cent of the offenders possessed average or above average intelligence. But every killer experienced a significantly malfunctioned family unit during childhood. Failings included alcohol or drug abuse, sexual difficulties, insanity and criminal behaviour?
 
`If the FBI had been hunting Jack the Ripper, they would have referred to him simply as unsub, meaning unknown subject, the agency's standard term for an unnamed offender? `We need to trawl the profile's deeper and darker waters to pinpoint a genuine suspect. We are looking for somebody who is mentally ill but not noticeably so, who knows that what he is doing is wrong but needs to do it and is capable of functioning routinely in society from day to day without ever
being a properly integrated part of it.
 

The Author
 
William Beadle is the Chairman of the Whitechapel Society 1888, the forum for students of the Jack the Ripper murders. He is also a member of Mensa and the Dealy Plaza (Kennedy assassination) Society and Richard III Society. He is the son of a policeman and lives in East London.

Review
 
The first thing to note about this book is it's dust jacket which proclaims "Jack the Ripper-unmasked....the real identity of the world's most infamous killer is revealed at last". Certainly any book with Jack the Ripper in it's title is going to immediately focus the minds of true crime buffs and in particular that sub-group collectively known as 'ripperologists'. Equally this is not the first time that JTR has allegedly been identified and for 'ripperologists' it won't be the last.
 
Beadle identifies William Bury (Berry) as JTR. After strangling his wife and half heartedly mutilating her body in a Dundee squat He was hanged at Dundee prison in April 1889. The book contains very thorough research into Bury's life from birth to death as well as the known facts concerning the bit-players in this Victorian mystery, his family, JTR victims, witnesses and investigators. Each chapter is referenced in detail but it would have benefited from an index to make it easier to dip in and out of by those more interested in the factual, rather than theoretical content. Bury is portrayed as a unintellectual figure, whose life is spent in an alcohol induced state trying by fair means or foul to get by in very hard times.
 
Undoubtedly the book does provide a potential candidate for JTR and there is nothing in the 318 pages that says it definitely could not have been Bury. How conclusive the evidence is ....is for the reader to decide. In any case it has to be closer to the truth than much of the previously printed multitude of JTR literature. It also includes reference to other 'multicides', serial killers and murderers and those who study them on a professional level. Whether looking into the minds of Christie, Bundy et al is relevant or no more than interesting, since they got caught whereas JTR didn't, is an interesting point for discussion.
 
This book includes much of the evidence that exists still today relating to the actual murders and also much of the speculation by those who have investigated it. Obviously some of the factual evidence is pretty gruesome and not necessarily therefore a book to be left around for curious children to pick up. It is quite surprising that the book is not illustrated save for two facsimiles of the daubing on the back of the cellar door behind which he murdered his wife, Ellen. The chain of evidence put forward by Beadle includes:
 
The victims' names reminded Bury of his mother and sister.
Bury lived in the area of the Whitechapel murders at the significant times.
Bury used a horse and cart to get around the area.
Bury had some anatomical knowledge as a horse butcher.
The series of murders stopped after Bury left London.
 
The whole point of 'ripperology' is that no one will ever know for certain who JTR was, therefore it is a whole science for making suggestions as to who it could have been and leaving others to disprove it. What is for sure is that no 'ripperologist' should be without this latest theory on their ever expanding JTR bookshelf. Having another name to theorise over is much more fun than an 'unsub'...unknown subject.
 
Cliff Cohen.

More Details on the John Blake Website

The World's Most Bizarre Murders
Edition: 1st
Format: Hardback
Author: James Marrison
ISBN: 978-1-84454-667
Publishers: John Blake Publishing
Price: 14.99
Publication Date: Oct 2008
 
Publisher's Title Information
 

Murder is a subject that has held an intense fascination for countless people for many years. From the mystery of the Jack the Ripper murders to the hunt for the Yorkshire Ripper; from the gruesome killings of Sweeney Todd to the trial of the notorious Dr Crippen, the public seems to have an endless appetite for books, articles and television programmes dedicated to the topic of murder. Yet The World's Most Bizarre Murders is no ordinary true crime tome. Within these pages are the details of the weirdest, most stomach-churning and odd murders you will ever come across.
 
Take, for example, Enriqueta Marti who kidnapped children from the streets of Barcelona, then boiled away their flesh and crushed their bones for ingredients for her coveted 'magic potions'. Said to prevent ageing, the potions were snapped up by the ranks of the wealthy until two children were found alive in Marti's house. Or take Randy Kraft, known as The Scorecard Killer, who was a computer genius by day and a deranged psychopath by night. Finally arrested with a corpse slumped in the passenger seat of his car, it emerged that Kraft had spent over a decade cutting up and disposing of his numerous victims along the California Highways.

In this blood-curdling collection of twisted tales, true crime writer James Marrison draws upon the material that has featured in the hugely successful column The Murder File in cult magazine Bizarre. His research has taken him all around the world in order to disclose the kind of sickening deeds that are perpetrated more often than you might think, but which sometimes go largely unreported by the media. The stories in this fascinating book range from high-profile murder cases to long-forgotten crimes buried in police archives all over the world.
From real-life murderous witches, to mad scientists and killer dwarves, all the stories have one thing in common a uniquely bizarre twist. If you think you've got the stomach for the bloodcurdling, the deranged and the downright strange then look no further than these pages. You have been warned .

 
`Hedonistic serial killer and family man Jerome Brudos killed four young women in his own
backyard and dumped their remains in a nearby river. But how did he keep his murderous nature a secret and could it really have been his love of women's shoes that made him a killer?'
`While there have been many cases of children who kill, perhaps none have been as instinctively savage and ferocious as Santos Godino. lost took him to be the slightly demented but harmless local pest, but behind his somewhat vacant gaze was, in fact, a fairly resourceful killer.' `Twenty years ago, Hollywood actress Susan Cabot was found bludgeoned to death in her Los Angeles home. But had the murderer really been a Latin American ninja, as her son claimed? Or had the babyfaced mummy's boy done it himself, driven insane by an infected batch of hormones from a dead man?'

The Author 

In 1996, after completing a Masters in History at the University of Edinburgh, James Marrison moved to Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he now lives and works as a freelance journalist. Besides his other writing work, Marrison is also a regular contributor to Bizarre magazine in the UK where he specialises in true crime. While working for Bizarre, Marrison has interviewed some of the most eminent psychologists, criminologists and CSI investigators operating in their field today and has written extensively about some of the world's most notorious killers.


The World's Ten Most Evil Men
Edition: 1st
Format: Paperback
Author: Nigel Cawthorne
ISBN: 9781844547456
Publishers: John Blake Publishing
Price: 9.99
Publication Date: May 2009
 
Publisher's Title Information
 

In this hard-hitting collection, acclaimed author Nigel Cawthorne examines ten of the most sickening twisted men who are still alive today. Some of them, like serial killer Dennis Nilsen and cult leader Charles Manson, are thankfully behind bars. Others, including the world's most wanted terrorist, Osama bin Laden, are still at large. Inside this book is the gut-twisting story of Charles Taylor, the blood-soaked African general who has 'recruited' thousands of child soldiers, and one of the most shocking cases of recent years: that of Joseph Fritzl, the Austrian man who imprisoned and sexually abused his own daughter for almost a quarter of a century. This collection is a terrifying reminder that monsters really do exist.
 

About the Author
 
Nigel Cawthorne is the author of many bestselling non-fiction books including Heroes: The True Stories Behind Every VC Winner Since World War Two; Vietnam: A War Lost and Won; and History's Greatest Battles. He lives in London.
 

Introduction
 
There are so many evil people in the world that it was hard to limit the scope of this book to just ten of them. And when I say 'evil', I don't just mean bad or misguided, or even misunderstood; I'm talking about people whose principal aim is to make life a living hell for the rest of us. Some, like Osama bin Laden and Charles Manson, may want to drag the entire world into bloodshed and chaos. Others, such as Robert Mugabe, are content to draw only their own people into the abyss. Colonel Mengistu Haile Mariam and Charles Taylor inflicted murderous misery on two nations apiece, while Radovan Karadzic was happy to order the extermination of others who were not like him.
 
Ian Brady tortured and murdered defenceless children in an attempt to break down the moral constraints that the rest of us rely on to get through life. Peter Sutcliffe killed vulnerable women for his own sexual gratification and then claimed that he was doing the work of God, while Dennis Nilsen killed because he could not stand to be alone - something we all must face, from time to time.
 
History is littered with truly evil characters. The twelfth-century Mongol leader Genghis Khan once stated: 'I have committed many acts of cruelty and had an incalculable number of men killed, never knowing what I did was right, but I am indifferent to what people think of me.' It is estimated that he killed up to a quarter of the world's population during his lifetime. Outside the cities he conquered, he built pyramids of heads before completely destroying the internal fabric, but his evil did not stop there: when he died on the shore of Lake Baikal in 1227, he left orders that, if anyone gazed on his coffin, the next one would be theirs.
 
The evil deeds of Adolf Hitler are almost too infamous to recount. He started World War II, which resulted in the deaths of up to 60 million. There are no reliable estimates of the number of wounded or displaced, or those who endured other terrible privations. Hitler was also responsible for the systemic murder of some six million Jews, along with gypsies, Slays, homosexuals and political allies, as well as direct enemies of Germany.
 
And it's not just limited to men. In the 1860s, a million died during one woman's attempt to make herself the Empress of South America. She was an Irish prostitute named Eliza Lynch, who was the mistress of Francisco Solano Lopez, the President of Paraguay. To further her lover's ambitions, she pushed him into simultaneously declaring war on Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay in 1863. In the six-year battle that ensued, Paraguay was completely destroyed. When Lynch eventually fled the country not a single male over the age of nine was left alive.
For the purposes of this book, I was confined to write about evil people who are, at the time of writing, still alive. There are more than enough of them. You may disagree with my choice - you are, of course, free to come up with your own list. I have not presented my own selection in any particular order (I think it would be tasteless to come up with a Top Ten). Again, you are free to rank them.
 
Nigel Cawthorne Bloomsbury, London 2009




Murders of the Black Museum
Edition: 1st
Format: Hardback
Author: Gordon Honeycombe
ISBN: 9781844547159
Publishers: John Blake
Price: 17.99
Publication Date: March 2009
 
Publisher's Title Information
 

New Scotland Yard, the headquarters of London's Metropolitan Police, houses a unique collection of exhibits, photographs and other items connected with some of the most famous crimes of the last century. For years it was known as the Black Museum and has recently been renamed the Crime Museum. Fifty of the murders, for which there are exhibits, are explored in detail in this compelling book.
 
The museum is closed to the public, but author Gordon Honeycombe- was given privileged access to its darkest secrets. His book spans a hundred years of murder and manslaughter and reveals the true facts - behind some of the country's most notorious murder cases, including Jack the Ripper, Dr Crippen and the Krays. This is the ultimate guide to the most incredible crimes ever committed, featuring contemporary photographs never seen outside Scotland Yard.
Closely researched and objective, this book is a fascinating guide to murder and a grim insight into the minds of those who practise it. Honeycombe takes an unflinching look at why people murder and asks important questions about this most appalling of crimes, about capital punishment and the law itself.
 

The Author
 
Gordon Honeycombe's best-selling books include Neither the Sea Nor the Sand, Dragon Under the Hill, Adam's Tale, Red Watch, The Edge of Heauen and Royal Wedding. He has also written for television, the theatre, film and radio.
 
An ITN newscaster for 12 years, Gordon Honeycombe was born in Karachi, British India, in 1936 and went to University College, Oxford. For two years he acted with the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford and London. In 1984 he joined TV-AM as their chief newsreader and remained with the company for five years.
 
He starred in Suspects in Swansea in 1989 and toured in Run for Your Wye! with Les Dawson in 1990. He also appeared in Aladdin with Cilia Black.
 
Since settling in Perth, Australia, Gordon has continued to work for radio, film, TV and the theatre. He has also appeared in several films and is now working on another novel.

Review

The name of the author brought back memories of a book by Gordon Honeycombe, which is not listed in 'By the Same Author', viz a book about tracing your family history.

This book spans 100 years, viz, 1875-1975 and includes names which may be familiar to you such as, 'Jack the Ripper', 'Dr Crippen', 'Major Armstrong', 'Edith Thompson', 'Neville Heath', 'Craig and Bentley', 'Christie' and 'Reggie and Ronnie Kray' (the Kray Twins will be more familiar to people of my generation).

Another incident I remember well was the murder of three policemen in Shepherd's Bush in 1966.

However there are 53 entries and many are not so familiar or perhaps completely new, obviously it depends how wide your knowledge is of true crime. Age will of course play a part as the last entry occurred in 1970.

Each subject makes a separate story, therefore you can move about the book as you wish. It isn't all bedtime reading. There are however some happy moments which prove that all not Coppers are B......s. Alfred Bowes attempted to murder Sir Edward Henry in 1912. Sir Edward was the Metropolitan Police Commissioner. When the defendant was sentenced to 15 years, Sir Edward helped financially to support his wife. When Bowes was released in 1922, Sir Edward paid his passage to Canada so that he could start a new life.

Each subject is well covered and the book would be a good addition to the library of any true crime enthusiast. All accounts are very fully researched.

Rob Jerrard


Roger Cook's Ten Greatest Conmen
Edition: 1st
Format: Hardback
Authors: Roger Cook and Tim Tate
ISBN: 9781844546466
Publishers: John Blake
Price: `17.99
Publication Date: Oct 2008
 
Publisher's Title Information

For more than 500 years con artists have been parting the greedy, gullible, unwary or soft-hearted from their money. Roger Cook and Tim Tate, television investigators who have spent a lifetime exposing crooks across the world, tell the extraordinary stories of the men and women who invented the most extravagant scams of all time. These include Frank Abagnale Jr, the real-life 'Catch Me If You Can' conman who successfully impersonated a pilot, a teacher, a lawyer and a paediatrician and swindled $2.5m across 26 countries and Victor Lustig, who sold the Eiffel Tower (twice!). This incredible book is the definitive guide to the world's most outrageous cons.
 
From the very first recorded con - the Elizabethan-era 'Spanish Prisoner Scam' - to today's hi-tech online swindles, grifters have become ever-more inventive in their scope, scale and ambition.
 
Their stories are remarkable - from the tale of Gregor MacGregor, the man who invented a fictional South American country, raised international loans on behalf of its 'government' and sold much of its (non-existent) land to would-be settlers in the 1820s, to Peter Foster, the king of bogus slimming 'cures' and friend of Page 3 models and a certain Prime Minister's wife.
Roger Cook and Tim Tate - television investigators who have spent a lifetime exposing crooks across the world - tell the extraordinary stories of the men and women who invented the most extravagant scams of all time, including:
 
Robert Hendy-Freegard, the fake spy who took over the lives of people who were duped into helping him
 
Joe Flynn, the man they called 'the King of Sting', who saw it as a challenge to get those who should have been in the know to accept the most bogus of information
Michael Jeffery - the man behind the greatest rock 'n' roll rip-off ever
John 'Goldfinger' Palmer, the man who was almost single-handedly responsible for the largest-ever timeshare fraud: 17,000 victims in a con worth 100 million
Frank Abagnale Jr, the real-life 'Catch Me If You Can' conman who successfully impersonated a pilot, a teacher, a lawyer and a paediatrician ...and swindled $2.5m across 26 countries
Discover how they fooled countless individuals into handing over their cash, how their scams netted millions and how police battled to bring them to justice. This incredible book is the definitive guide to the world's most outrageous cons.
 

About the Author
 
Roger Cook is Britain's most famous television investigator. For more than 30 years he has broadcasted fearless exposes of crooks, conmen and villains all across the world. Tim Tate is a television producer and author who has worked with Roger Cook on many of his investigations, as well as exposing other major scams across Europe and America.


LINKS

"Internet Law Book Reviews" Copyright Rob Jerrard 2009