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Power mad conman and the Polish Mafia
June 24, 2005 2:47 AM   Subscribe

The delusional world of Robert Hendy-Freegard, assasin/spy/carsalesman The tale of a power-mad car salesman. The guy managed to get so many people to do so many crazy things that I suggest you read the link for yourself. Unbelievable.
posted by ClanvidHorse (25 comments total)

 
Told there was no one of that name there, but thinking it was all part his MI5 evaluation, Mr Young handed the surprised barman the can opener and said: "Well, when you see him, give him this."

What an absolute scream!!!
posted by uncanny hengeman at 3:01 AM on June 24, 2005


I feel no pity for these gullible people... (only their loved ones). This guy has lead one hell of a life, though, I'm sure.
posted by adzm at 3:11 AM on June 24, 2005


I feel no pity for these gullible people.

Hell, I do.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 3:21 AM on June 24, 2005


Massively gullible victims for sure, but how unfulfilled must your life be to go along with some of these "MI5 tests"?

..becoming a blonde, going without make-up and sanitary towels, sleeping in Heathrow airport for several nights at a time, and living on park benches in Peterborough for weeks during winter.

Where's the mixing vodka martinis and playing baccarat?
posted by handybitesize at 3:33 AM on June 24, 2005


sounds like a movie I once saw...
posted by bashos_frog at 3:39 AM on June 24, 2005


Massively gullible victims

You're not getting it. This is the story of a serial wife-beater; the way he deluded these poor women was very similar to the way many men lock their wives into abusive relationships in which they are bullied, degraded and robbed of their selves.
posted by TimothyMason at 3:47 AM on June 24, 2005


Several of his victims were male. but I take the point that he operated in the same way as a wife-beater.
posted by ClanvidHorse at 4:06 AM on June 24, 2005


Only one of the victims in the court case was male. It is interesting that he subjected this man to what he (the perpetrator) probably saw as sexual humiliation. That is to say, he turned him into a woman.
posted by TimothyMason at 4:21 AM on June 24, 2005


You're not getting it

Not wanting to detract from the seriousness of the crime, or the inhumane nature of the tactics, but sometimes, just sometimes, the absurdity of the facts turn the gravity into levity....

He told Miss Kister that Miss Smith was Spanish and could speak no English, while telling Miss Smith, whom he had convinced she was being hunted by the IRA, to pretend she could not understand anything said to her for security reasons. As a result they never exchanged a word in three months.
posted by handybitesize at 4:22 AM on June 24, 2005


Dark comedy indeed. But the judgement that the victims were massively gullible, or that they must have had unfulfilled lives is misplaced.
posted by TimothyMason at 4:33 AM on June 24, 2005


To be honest when I posted this I was primarily thinking of the bizarre, sheer off-the-scale magnitude of the lies. I wasn't thinking too much about the sociological/pathological aspect of it.

There are plenty of tawdry tales of wife-beating out there but very few will involve tales of moving to the Hebrides
posted by ClanvidHorse at 4:34 AM on June 24, 2005


to watch submarines. (Pressed post to quickly that time)
posted by ClanvidHorse at 4:34 AM on June 24, 2005


too quickly even...
posted by ClanvidHorse at 4:35 AM on June 24, 2005


The pathological aspect is in the lies. Domestic abusers are, I believe, often given to lies and fabulations.
posted by TimothyMason at 4:52 AM on June 24, 2005


bashos_frog - I was thinking the same thing, obviously this guy saw True Lies one too many times. That or Dirty Rotten Scoundrels.
posted by bertrandom at 5:03 AM on June 24, 2005


Wow. The method to this guy's scams is such that I have to wonder if he fell for his own story after awhile.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 9:44 AM on June 24, 2005


Unfathomable cruelty.
posted by ericb at 10:04 AM on June 24, 2005


The pathological aspect is in the lies.

I think the most pathological aspect was his derring-do.

Domestic abusers are, I believe, often given to lies and fabulations.

The unfortunate thing is the degree to which the fabulous are often given to domestic abuse.
posted by nervousfritz at 10:05 AM on June 24, 2005


reading this, i wasn't reminded so much of "true lies" as i was of "confessions of a dangerous mind..."
posted by Ziggy Zaga at 10:25 AM on June 24, 2005


I'm having trouble feeling a lot of sympathy for the victims. I mean, come on. The last time a car salesman told me he was a spy and asked me to give him 10,000 pounds and go without sanitary napkins, I just quietly moved away and got a different seat on the bus. Who believes this stuff?? I think he carefully selected very gullible people.
posted by selfmedicating at 11:32 AM on June 24, 2005


The very key to his work was charm, confidence, and trust-building. Never having met the man, it is impossible to gauge where his disarming charisma ends and the victims gullibility begins.
posted by TempusFugit at 12:36 PM on June 24, 2005


If you think the victims were extraordinarily gullible, you've never seen a first-class con in action. The petty grifters will target marks with larceny in their soul, but the real pros can and will play nearly anybody, anywhere, anytime.

A high-class con played up against the wall (or in a store, for that matter) is like a beautiful improv play, where the audience slowly becomes the cast without knowing it, speaking the lines they should, taking cues, and doing things according to a script they think they understand.
posted by warbaby at 12:46 PM on June 24, 2005


It's a House of Games
posted by warbaby at 12:52 PM on June 24, 2005


Not to detract from (or repeat) bashos_frog's comment, but I wonder who's optioned the movie rights. Why wait til the trial's over? They can just tack on an ending in post.
posted by Eideteker at 4:14 AM on June 25, 2005


Another day, another sociopathic used car salesman.
posted by troutfishing at 6:36 AM on June 25, 2005


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