More evidence 'Ripper diary' a fake

Sept. 19, 1993
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LONDON -- More evidence emerged Sunday that a purported diary of Jack the Ripper to be published next month is a fake, with experts who studied the manuscript for The Sunday Times citing handwriting, word usage and other evidence of a hoax.

Earlier this month the U.S. publisher of the diary, Warner Books, pulled out of the project because its experts had determined the book was a hoax, but the British publisher Smith Gryphon has stood behind the diary and says it will go ahead with publication Oct. 7.

The manuscript is purportedly the diary of James Maybrick, a Liverpool cotton trader, in which he confesses to being the man who killed a half-dozen prostitutes in London's East End in 1888.

In it, the man says he killed the prostitutes as a form of revenge against women because of his wife's affair with another man. Maybrick's wife was convicted of killing her husband the year after the Ripper murders.

The Sunday Times, which was offered exclusive serialization rights to the latest Ripper book for 75,000 pounds ($112,500), hired numerous experts to determine the document's authenticity.

The newspaper, more careful with sensational books since it was stung by publishing the hoax Hitler diaries, pulled out of the deal to publish extracts from the Ripper book when its experts said it was almost certainly a fake.

It said the handwriting in the diary did not match Maybrick's writing on his will and in a marriage register, he used words that did not come into common usage until much later that the Victorian era, and scraps of paper and evidence of glue in the diary showed it was used as a photo album in the early 1900s.

Robert Smith of Smith Gryphon said he would still publish the book and he said he had found another U.S. partner, Hyperion Books.

'I think the public will be extremely interest in reading the book,' Smith said.NEWLN: mjc-ps-emkiNEWLN:ccccqqe

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