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True Detective September 2001
The Straffen case is a grim chapter in British criminal history, but many readers will only recall it because John Straffen is our longest serving prisoner.
Bob Woffinden is an author and television documentary maker who specialises in miscarriages of justice, and his reports make a convincing argument that legally all was not as it should have been when Straffen stood trial for the murder of five-year-old Linda Bowyer in 1952.
Mr. Woffinden’s account of the case in the light of recently released medical records is real eye opener. Study the author’s arguments and you may agree the affair should be reinvestigated: then next month, in the October issue, read excerpts from the actual transcript of the trial, and decide for yourself. Guilty or not guilty?
Should cannabis be legalised? Jeff Barr, a border guard at Eagle Pass, might have answered this question easily – catching drug-runners was his life, and was to cost him his life. Chris Coplans reports on a very real and violent war on the Mexican border.
From Australia and America we have two murder mysteries. Stuart Pearce, a drunken, violent father of four, disappeared from Adelaide in 1991 leaving the charred remains of his family, bar one seven-year-old son who was staying with a friend, inside their home which had been raised to the ground. He hasn’t been seen since. And in South Salem, New York, pretty Kathie Durst walked out of a party to battle out an ensuing argument with her estranged husband 20 years ago. Police are now re-opening their files on the case.
And if you love tales of buried treasure and piracy then read A.W. Moss’s report on Captain Kidd’s four year voyage to clean the high seas of blackguards, tyrants and rogues…