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World's Greatest Hoaxes & Frauds !!!



Putting Couani on the Map

Putting Couani on the Map During the autumn of 1902, the President of Couani called a Press conference at his luxury Paris hotel. Some of the reporters had never heard of Couani and according to the President, Adolphe Brezet, that was the reason for the Press conference. Brezet explained that Couani had long been under the dominance of its powerful neighbour, Brail, but as it had now gained its independence he had been sent to Paris to inform the world of its existence. The President spoke so convincingly of his country, that the reporters believed him, and by the end of the year everyone in Paris had heard of Couani. Early in 1903, the first Couani embassy opened in Paris and this was soon followed by consulates in London, Rome, Berlin and Madrid. In 1904, Brezet had letters from both the Japanese and Russian governments. The two nations were at war and urgently needed more ships. Would it be possible, both nations wondered, for the famous Couani shipyards to build them? Somewhat unusually, Brezet took a while to reply. Meanwhile, the two countries checked up on Couani with their ambassadors in Brazil. Much to their surprise, they were informed that there was no such place.



Rare Rabbit

Rare Rabbit One of the postcards bought by people who visit Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming, USA, shows a rare animal whicc lives in the region. It is the jackapole, an antlered rabbit that is almost extinct. This rabbit is also unusal because it can imitate human sounds. If anyone decided to search the plains of Wyoming for this rare creature they would be disappointed, It does not exist. But many people who see the postcard believe the photograph to be quite genuine.



Tickets, Please

Tickets, Please As the ticket inspector on the train approached, Edward Nye told his friend, the poet James Whitcomb Riley, to get under the seat as he only had one ticket. Riley was reluctant to follow his friend's request but eventually did so to avoid any trouble. When the inspector reached him, Nye handed over the tickets. 'Who's the other ticker for? asked the inspector. Nye pointed to Riley, half hidden beneath the seat. 'It's for my friend. He always travels like that!'



A Fiver for Free

A Fiver for Free There in the middle of a pavement in London was a genuine 5 note. Sooner or later someone was bound to notice it and pick it up. But the person who did so was in for a big surprise. The note was glued to the pavement. What the victim did not see was Horace de vere Cole laughing in the background. In the 1920s Cole was known as the greatest practical joker of all time and this was one of his favourite pranks.



Wet Phones

Wet Phones When people in north London received a telephone call from an engineer saying that there was a fault on the line, they believed him. He said that the fault could only be put right if the receiver was dunked in a bucket of water. Real telephone engineers had quite a job repairing wet telephones.



Portugal's Master Forger

Portugal's Master Forger Arthur Virgilio Alves Reis, an official in Portugal's colonial service, devised one of the most amazingly successful frauds of all time. In 1924 he discovered that the British printers, Waterlow and Sons, had pritned some Portugues book notes. When he also found out that the Portugese bank did not check for duplicate notes he put his plan into action. He sent as associate, Karel Marang, to London to negotiate with the printers. Marang took with him a forged document giving authority for money to be printed using the same plates and the same serial numbers as a previous order, for use in Angola Africa. Official documents presented to the printers stated this would not cause any confusion in Portugal as the notes were to be overprinted with the name 'Angola' when they reached Africa. The notes were duly printed and Reis and his accomplices smuggled them into Portugal. For almost a year nothing was suspected but then it was realized that there were a large number of 500-escudo notesin circulation. Investigators were sent to the banks to find out what was happening. When they searched the bank of angola and Metropole, which had been set up by Reis, they found packets of the new notes. Reis was arrested, but becuase the documents he had forged were so expertly done it was five years before he could be tried. He was eventually sentenced to 20 years in prison. Two of his accomplices also received prison sentences and a third fled the country.


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