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Hell on Wheels: The sinister story of Ted Bundy's VW Beetle

You've heard of "scammers" – short for trusted men – but what about the scammers of the world? Some deceiving ladies used their wits and their pronounced lies to achieve great wealth, fame, and even the benefits of the aristocracy.

. 1 Aurora Florentina Magnusson (aka Helga de la Brache)

Earlier, before blood tests became available, it was pretty easy to embark on a well-to-do family line. A Swedish orphan has just proved a terrific background story. In the middle of the 19th century, Aurora Florentina Magnusson declared to Helga de la Brache, the secret daughter of King Gustav IV of Sweden and Queen Frederica of Baden.

She invented an elaborate story of the divorced royal houses that united in a German monastery She let her live with her "aunt" Princess Sophia Albertine of Sweden. After Sophia's death, Magnusson's story, she was forced into an institution where her claims to noble lineage were certainly ignored. After her "flight" Magnusson Sweden applied for a royal pension, which had earned her claimed descent. However, a trial in 1

876 proved to be a fiction. Magnusson had to expect fines, but no prison sentence. From then on she lived quietly with her female co-conspirator Henrika Aspegren for the rest of her days.

. 2 Mary Carleton (a. Princess of Wolway)

The old orphaned princess line was also used by this 17th century Englishwoman. After two failed and simultaneous marriages, a resulting bigamy trial and an attack with a wealthy nobleman, Mary Carleton fled from England to the Netherlands. On her return, she used her noble gifts and romantic fantasies to rebuild as Princess van Wolway from Cologne.

With this cunning, she sometimes seduced and involved a number of men, each playing only to rob them. It is believed that many of their victims were too embarrassed to reveal their deception. But despised lovers talked about their crimes catching them up and sentencing Carleton to death at the age of 30.

. 3 Ann O & # 39; Delia Diss Debar (aka Swami Laura Horos)

Having taken over a number of pseudonyms during her criminal career, little can be said about this American cheater, including her real name. Ann O & # 39; s Delia Diss Debar was as enterprising as notorious that she brought countless people through various scams that exploited 19th century spiritualism. This earned her an enemy in the dedicated debunker Harry Houdini, who denounced her in his book A Magician Among the Spirits along with the entire Spiritualism movement because he had mothered this immoral woman.

The New York Times described her as a "wonderful rogue who, with no personal charm or attraction, has attacked nations since her girlhood with her crimes." After repeated convictions for fraud in the US – and one for rape and fraud in London – Debar disappeared from the spotlight and the police signing. She was last spotted in Cincinnati in 1909.

. 4 Big Bertha Heyman (aka The Confidence Queen)

After she came to America in 1878, she entered the criminal footsteps of her forefather and ended up in prison on a regular basis. Bertha Heyman was considered one of the hottest con-artists of her time. She often played with the hubris, greed and ambition of people for their own purposes and offered them the promise to exchange wealth later for a fat load of money.

Even behind bars, she managed to bend people to her will. In addition to cheating more victims in prison, she has also convinced prison officials to allow her prison breaks for Manhattan carriage rides and theater visits. It is no wonder that she received the title "The Queen of Trust"

. 5. Barbara Erni (aka The Golden Boos)

Erni was born in Liechtenstein in the 18th century by a homeless couple and had an unusual way of earning a living, earning her the nickname "The Golden Boos." She would travel through the country carrying a suitcase that she claimed was full of treasures. Wherever she left off, she asked her hosts to lock her up in a safe place, such as where she kept her valuables. The next day both the trunk and the valuables of her host had disappeared.

But how did that work? Erni had a person with dwarfism as an accomplice, who was lying in wait in the trunk. Left alone, he would emerge to rob the place before they left. While the fate of her accomplice of the story is lost, Erni was finally caught. After the confession of 17 robberies she was beheaded in 1785. Erni has the dubious distinction that she is the last person executed in Liechtenstein before the death penalty was abolished.

. 6 Mary Baker (ao Princess Caraboo)

One of the most famous princesses ever committed was the idea of ​​an English servant with great imagination. In 1817, a striking woman in exotic robes appeared in a small English village in an incomprehensible language. A Portuguese sailor appeared comfortably, claiming he could translate. She claimed to be Princess Caraboo of the island of Javasu. Her story was a tragedy and danger that escaped pirate catchers as she jumped overboard and swam by storm to the safe shores of the English Channel.

This great story made her almost instantaneously famous and brought her fans to the affluent Worrall family, who cared and cared for them with much attention. Even as a former employer revealed Baker's true identity, the Worrall family faced the charming cheater. They paid their passage to Philadelphia, where their fame – despite their fraudulent claims – only grew. Later she returned to her true home country (England, not Javasu) and occasionally put on her caraboo costume for public performances.

. 7 Cassie Chadwick (born The Lost Carnegie)

Born as Elizabeth Bigley, this Canadian rival took the princess in a distinctly American direction, claiming to be the heir to a massively rich industrialist. Their disadvantages began small in Cleveland, and Chadwick babbled with fortune-telling and forgeries. After spending some time in prison for the latter, the slightly over 40-year-old started with the biggest cheater and claimed to be the illegitimate daughter of steel magnate Andrew Carnegie.

She said he sent her substantial payments to silence her, and that was enough for many to give Chadwick strong credit. One bank lent her a quarter of a million dollars because of her claims, and later her business ceased. Carnegie herself participated in her later trial, which earned Chadwick ten years in prison. She died in prison in 1907 at the age of 50.

. 8 Linda Taylor (aka The Welfare Queen)

She was not only an animator, but a captivating element of Ronald Reagan's 1976 campaign, in which the future president declared: "She used 80 names, 30 addresses, and 15 phone numbers. Collect food stamps "Social security benefits, veteran benefits to four nonexistent deceased husbands, and welfare." Their tax-free cash income alone is $ 150,000 annually. "

Reagan's account of" The Welfare Queen "has since been considered hyperbolic and worse, but Taylor took advantage socializing extensively by setting aliases and turning her poorly gained profits into jewelry, fur, and a Cadillac that she would proudly take to the Public Relief Agency, she eventually spent time on these crimes, and was charged with kidnapping and murder, although she was never convicted. [19659002] 9. Jeanne of Valois-Saint-Rémy (aka Comtesse de la Motte)

A Frenchwoman of the 18th century with doubtful noble In the meantime Valois-Saint-Rémy produced a con that was so big that he helped the French Revolution by irreparably damaging the reputation of Queen Marie Antoinette. The affair of The Diamond Necklace involved the controversial Comtesse to convince the unkempt Cardinal de Rohan to get the queen a fabulous necklace. Cardinal de Rohan, desperate to retreat into the grace of the Queen, wrote the royal letters for which Valois-Saint-Rémy wrote answers. She even employed a Marie Antoinette lookalike for this scam that ended with de Rohan handing over 1,600,000 livres worth of hefty jewelry.

When their makers demanded a payment from the Queen, Valois-Saint-Rémy was arrested and her fraud was discovered. In the ensuing trial, however, the forged letters convinced many that the queen was actually pursuing an affair with the cardinal, further damaging her public image. The necklace disappeared, probably disassembled for the sale of her many diamonds. Valois-Saint-Rémy served the time, but managed to flee and fled to London. In 1789 she published her memoirs, in which she willfully blamed the late Marie Antoinette for the whole ordeal.

10th Sarah Rachel Russell (aka The Beautician From Hell)

This Victorian hustler made profit from vanity and promised her customers an eternal youth in her London salon, thanks to her special products, such as Rejuvenating Jordan Water, Circassian Golden Hair Wash , Magnetic Skirt Dew for wrinkle removal, Royal Arabian Face Cream and Honey of Mount Hymettus Wash – all essentially snake oil.

She also blackmailed and lured women into an Arab bath that allegedly had a secret spy hole where men could pay for the franchise. Their trial in 1868 caused quite a stir, not only because of their crimes, but also because it turned out that the London women spent far more on makeup and beauty treatments (for money and attention) than social fatigues suggested. Her three years in prison, however, changed little to change Russell, who was once again confronted with allegations of fraud a decade after her original conviction. This time, the beautician from hell died in jail.

A version of this story ran in 2015 for the first time.

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