#information ‘Puppet Master’ Robert Hendy-Freegardis: British conman hunted in France after ‘working down cops’ #WorldNews
A infamous British conman who was the topic of the ‘Puppet Master’ Netflix documentary after he used unimaginable lies to trick ladies out of money is being hunted by French police for allegedly injuring two officers whereas fleeing an id examine, officers stated right this moment.
Conman Robert Hendy-Freegard, 51, is claimed to have pushed his Audi A3 into the law enforcement officials whereas escaping from his hideaway in the agricultural village of Vidaillat in the sparsely populated Creuse area in central France.
Labour inspectors, accompanied by law enforcement officials, had carried out an inspection on Thursday on the Beagle-breeding enterprise Hendy-Freegard was working along with his reclusive companion, Sandra Clifton, 49.
‘While police had been asking one of many companions to accompany them to the closest station, the person began his car and hit two officers earlier than fleeing,’ police in the Creuse area stated.
One policeman suffered critical facial wounds together with ‘a number of fractures’ and stays in hospital, whereas the opposite was handled for lesser accidents.
Hendy-Freegard, a former salesman and barman, is a infamous conman who satisfied a collection of extremely respectable victims he was an undercover MI5 agent they usually had been IRA targets as a result of they knew him.
Several of his victims lived in hiding for years on finish. All of them ended up giving him cash – £1million he spent residing out his James Bond fantasy of quick automobiles, luxurious holidays and costly garments.
Conman Robert Hendy-Freegard, 51, (pictured) allegedly drove his Audi A3 into the law enforcement officials whereas escaping from his hideaway in the agricultural village of Vidaillat in the sparsely populated Creuse area in central France
Hendy-Freegard was the topic of the hit Netflix documentary collection ‘The Puppet Master: Hunting the Ultimate Conman’
The crimes of Britain’s ‘Puppet Master’ who stole hundreds from victims
- 1993 – British conman Robert Hendy-Freegard, 51, first struck in Newport, Shropshire, the place rich farmer’s son John Atkinson and his then-girlfriend Sarah Smith fell below his spell
- April 1993 – Hendy-Freegard all of a sudden introduced his MI5 ‘cowl was blown’ and each of them needed to go undercover.
- 2000 – Hendy-Freegard stole hundreds from a lawyer he met by a automobile dealership. He proposed they usually went on holidays everywhere in the world.
- 2002 – He seduced an American little one psychologist with tales of how he had infiltrated a legal community and the way he had killed a legal who had threatened to reveal him
- Scotland Yard and the FBI organized a sting operation. First, the FBI bugged the telephone of the American psychologist’s dad and mom.
- 2005 – Hendy-Freegard was jailed for all times by a London Court for deception, theft and kidnapping in a rare trial that heard from seven victims he fleeced out of cash
- April 2007 – Hendy-Freegard appealed in opposition to his kidnapping convictions and received.
- 2009 – Hendy-Freegard launched from jail
- 2012 – He met Sandra Clifton on a courting app and strikes in together with her and her kids
- 2014 – After slicing off communication together with her household, the couple disappear
- 2015 – Hendy-Freegard and Ms Clifton later moved to France and Martine Laporte, the mayor of Vidaillat, stated that the conman had been residing in the village since 2015
Hendy-Freegard was jailed for all times by a London Court in 2005 for deception, theft and kidnapping in a rare trial that heard from seven victims he fleeced out of cash.
But the kidnap expenses had been later quashed on attraction and he was launched from jail in 2009 and he was the topic of the hit Netflix documentary collection ‘The Puppet Master: Hunting the Ultimate Conman’.
Hendy-Freegard later moved to France and Martine Laporte, the mayor of Vidaillat, stated that the conman had been residing in the village since 2015.
By Friday afternoon in France, a large-scale police operation was aimed toward looking for the fugitive.
‘All the troopers of the division have been deployed in addition to a helicopter from the gendarmerie to attempt to discover this particular person’, stated a Gendarmerie spokesman.
Ms Clifton’s kids have claimed that their mom was being coercively managed by Hendy-Freegard, however he denies the allegation, in accordance with the judicial sources.
Hendy-Freegard met Ms Clifton, a registered canine breeder, in 2012, after which he began to pose as a breeder himself.
He confirmed off his Beagles on the Crufts canine present, utilizing a false title, however stopped attending in 2015 when his true id turned identified.
In the ‘Puppet Master’ Netflix documentary, Ms Clifton’s son Jake and daughter Sophie, who’re in their 20s, stated she disappeared after assembly him. They stated they haven’t seen their mom since 2014, and claimed she has fallen below Hendy-Freegard’s management.
In March, the French authorities issued an order for Hendy-Freegard and Ms Clifton to close their canine breeding enterprise down.
Robert Hendy-Freegard is claimed to make use of the identities David Hendy and David Clifton as he travels round Europe. French stated anybody who spots him ought to strategy with care, after which referred to as the authorities.
During his London trial, Hendy-Freegard was stated to have lived by the motto ‘Lies need to be huge to be convincing.’
The conman first struck in Newport, Shropshire, the place rich farmer’s son John Atkinson and his then-girlfriend Sarah Smith fell below his spell.
To start with, he informed John that he was an MI5 secret agent who was investigating an IRA cell.
Hendy-Freegard pressured Atkinson to let himself be overwhelmed as much as show his loyalty and to indicate that he was ‘laborious sufficient’. He additionally satisfied him to behave in a weird method in school to show his loyalty and to alienate him from mates.
Then, in April 1993, Hendy-Freegard all of a sudden introduced his MI5 ‘cowl was blown’ and each of them needed to go undercover.
He informed Sarah and her buddy Maria Hendy that John had most cancers and satisfied them to accompany them in a ‘farewell tour’ throughout England.
All three went ‘on the run’, finishing up weird ‘missions’ throughout the nation earlier than they moved right into a rented ‘secure home’ in Sheffield.
He informed them to sever all contact with their households as a result of they had been in hazard simply by being related to him.
During the trial, Sarah recalled incidents comparable to being taken to a so-called ‘secure home’ with a bucket over her head, having to cover in cabinets to keep away from guests, and spending three weeks in a locked lavatory with little to eat.
Hendy-Freegard was jailed for all times by a London Court in 2005 for deception, theft and kidnapping in a rare trial that heard from seven victims he fleeced out of cash. Pictured: Hendy-Freegard with certainly one of his victims, Maria Hendy
Hendy-Freegard, who was dubbed ‘the puppet grasp’, pressured his 10 victims to tackle weird ‘exams’, together with one who needed to survive on rations of 1 Mars Bar per week
He had satisfied her she can be shot by a sniper if she dared to depart.
John was ordered to get a job as a barman and John’s girlfriend Sarah needed to work in a chip store. They gave their wages straight to their tormentor, leaving them nearly nothing to dwell on.
The three spent 5 months in a Sheffield flat as a result of Hendy-Freegard had forbidden them to exit. Sarah turned so hungry she even resorted to consuming leftover chip batter.
Like all his victims, the chums had been additionally pressured to acquire cash for him from their households: cash Hendy-Freegard spent on residing out his James Bond fantasy.
Over time he purchased himself seven BMWs in addition to an £80,000 Aston Martin Volante, Rolex watches and Savile Row fits.
The group finally cut up up, others took jobs – nonetheless handing most of their cash to Hendy-Freegard – and Maria turned his lover. She gave beginning to his two daughters.
When Maria finally came upon about his different affairs and confronted him, he beat her up and threatened to kill her earlier than he informed her that she couldn’t discuss to anybody for ‘safety causes’.
As he turned extra assured, Hendy-Freegard managed as much as 5 victims at a time, preserving them in varied ‘secure homes’ across the nation and utilizing a mix of allure and menace to maintain them below his spell.
Hendy-Freegard satisfied John and his dad and mom to offer him £300,000. He was put into ‘coaching’, performing spurious jobs.
Sometimes he must look ahead to days in a sure place for a non-existent assembly.
As he turned extra assured, Hendy-Freegard managed as much as 5 victims at a time, preserving them in varied ‘secure homes’ across the nation and utilizing a mix of allure and menace to maintain them below his spell. Pictured: Freegard and Maria with their two kids
Eventually, he informed his sister that the IRA was pursuing him, and the story started to unravel.
His crimes at all times started in the identical method. He would meet victims on social events or as prospects in the pub or automobile dealership the place he was working.
He would later reveal his ‘function’ as an secret agent for MI5, Special Branch or Scotland Yard working in opposition to the IRA.
He would win them over, ask for cash and make them do his bidding.
Then he demanded that they reduce off contact with household and mates, undergo ‘loyalty exams’ and dwell alone in poor situations.
All needed to perform weird duties which he informed them had been ‘exams’ set by their supposed ‘spymasters’.
He would declare he was going to marry his feminine victims, who usually refused to cooperate with the police as a result of he had warned them that police can be double brokers or MI5 brokers performing one other ‘loyalty take a look at’.
Another of his victims was Elisabeth Bartholomew née Richardson, who, regardless of being just lately married, turned obsessive about him.
She testified at trial ‘that she would have gone wherever to be with Robert as he was nice in mattress’.
He informed her to take up loans, supposedly to settle her money owed following her divorce.
On 25 April 2007, Robert Hendy-Freegard had appealed in opposition to his kidnapping convictions and received. His life sentence was revoked however nonetheless served 9 years for the opposite offences. Pictured: Detectives piece collectively their investigation about Hendy-Freegard
Meanwhile in 2000 Hendy-Freegard met profitable lawyer Caroline Cowper by the automobile dealership in Chiswick, West London.
He helped her to alter her automobile, pocketed the distinction, requested for extra, persuaded her to offer extra money for a leasing enterprise they might run collectively and stole £14,000 from her constructing society account.
They turned lovers and went on holidays everywhere in the world, earlier than turning into engaged. Her household intervened however when the leasing automobile didn’t materialize, he informed her that the Polish Mafia had taken it.
Two years later, he seduced an American little one psychologist Kimberley Adams with tales of how he had infiltrated a legal community and the way he had killed a legal who had threatened to reveal him.
Weeks into the 14-month relationship, he proposed marriage however informed Dr Adams she must be a spy, resign from her job in Reading and be forbidden publish and speak to together with her household.
He instigated loyalty exams and a change of id.
Meanwhile he additionally flushed her anti-depressant drugs down the bathroom and despatched her to dwell together with her ‘very humble’ mom for 3 months in Worksop, Nottinghamshire.
He additionally informed Leslie Gardner in Newcastle that he wanted cash to purchase off IRA killers, who had been launched after the Good Friday settlement.
She gave him £16,000 over six years. He additionally offered her automobile and once more stored the cash.
In 2002 Scotland Yard and the FBI organized a sting operation. First, the FBI bugged the telephone of the Kimberley’s dad and mom.
Her mom informed Hendy-Freegard she would hand over £10,000 however solely in particular person.
Hendy-Freegard met her in Heathrow Airport the place police apprehended him.
He denied all expenses and claimed they had been a part of a conspiracy in opposition to him and continued this story in the following trial.
On 23 June 2005, after an eight-month trial, Blackfriars Crown Court convicted Robert Hendy-Freegard for 2 counts of kidnapping, 10 of theft and eight of deception. On 6 September 2005 he was given a life sentence.
On 25 April 2007, Robert Hendy-Freegard appealed in opposition to his kidnapping convictions and received. His life sentence was revoked however nonetheless served 9 years for the opposite offences.
The Court of Appeal judgment performed an essential function in defining the fashionable offence of kidnap.
Hendy-Freegard is now in a relationship with Sandra Clifton and an everyday on the dog-show circuit utilizing the title David Clifton.
The couple met on a courting app in 2012 and Hendy-Freegard purchased her a flashy automobile, telling her he was working in ‘promoting house.
Sandra’s relationship together with her kids started to interrupt down, with Hendy-Freegard suggesting Jake, then 16, was homosexual and locked him out the home.
Sophie reduce off communication together with her brother and father, and now believes she was brainwashed by Hendy-Freegard.
Speaking to The Sunday Times magazine, she stated she had an envelope titled ‘The Lies and Slander of Mr Mark Clifton’ pinned on her bed room noticeboard for all her father’s letters telling her he cherished her.
In 2014, Sandra and Hendy-Freegard disappeared and Sophie reunited together with her brother and father.
The pair had been determined to seek out their mom, and researched ‘David Clifton’, discovering his actual title was Hendy-Freegard.
However when police tracked down Sandra, and made her conscious of who she is with, she dismissed the inquiries.
In the seven years which have handed since Sandra vanished from household life, her dad and mom have died and he or she did not attend their funerals.
Meanwhile final yr Jake tried to get the home his mom inherited from her dad and mom protected for her by placing it into belief.
Sandra challenged the try and the 2 got here face-to-face for the primary time in years in courtroom.
She accused Jake of making an attempt to steal from her. He stated: ‘The drawback is my mum has been educated, managed to do no matter Freegard needs her to say and do.
‘When the police discovered her to inform her that we needed to listen to from her and to inform her who she was with, she stated, ‘I’m not bothered. I do know who I’m with.’
Hendy-Freegard has strongly denied accusations he’s controlling his new companion.