Fake Duke Scam

Status: Imposter
I kinda thought the posing-as-British-royalty scam had gone out of style with the end of the British Empire. But it seems con artists are still getting mileage out of it, as seen by this story in the Twin Cities Pioneer Press:

A group of Stillwater student journalists discovered [Joshua Adam] Gardner had been using a false identity when visiting the school in recent weeks. He'd been posing as "Caspian James Crichton-Stuart IV, the Fifth Duke of Cleveland" while staying with a Stillwater family for the past two months, investigators say.

Caspian James Crichton-Stuart IV, the Fifth Duke of Cleveland? People believed that? Though it seems his primary targets were teenage girls (who were probably pretty impressed to meet a Duke).

Update: CNN has published an article about this guy, who also called himself the "Earl of Scooby." It details how the students exposed him as a fraud. It also reveals how he came up with his name: ""Caspian" was a nickname he'd taken from the "Chronicles of Narnia" book series, he said, and Crichton is from author Michael Crichton."


Posted on Sun Jan 15, 2006


I'm not completely convinced that today's teenaged girls would know what an Earl was.
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Mon Jan 16, 2006  at  01:01 AM
Of course they do! An earl is what you put in your browser to go to Myspace.
Posted by Rich  on  Mon Jan 16, 2006  at  12:19 PM
Good one, Rich!
Posted by The Curator  in  San Diego  on  Mon Jan 16, 2006  at  05:49 PM
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