British politician, father of three, adulterer and a spy for Czechoslovakia, John Stonehouse was a man with a very full life. So full in fact that in 1974, at the age of 49 he decided to kill himself off and start a new life somewhere else. His clothing was found piled up on a beach in Miami, Florida and he was presumed drowned.Â While his family was mourning his passing, John was busy celebrating his demise by setting up a new life for himself in Australia with his mistress and former secretary Sheila Buckley.
John used fake identities to transfer large sums of money from bank to bank, feathering his love nest with the funds. His transactions were eventually spotted and reported to local police, who then spotted the dearly departed reading British newspapers covering his own disappearance & death. Authorities asked Scotland Yard to send along a photo of the dead politician and shortly thereafter they had themselves a match. On Christmas Eve John found himself on the Austrailian authorities naughty list and was arrested. 6 months later he was deported back to the UK, despite attempts to gain asylum from both Sweden and Mauritius. He was charged with 21 counts of theft, forgery, fraud, conspiracy to defraud, and causing a false police investigation and was sentenced to 7 years in prison. His wife divorced him, leaving him free to marry his pregnant mistress in 1981 after he was released from prison.