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The Littlehampton LibelsA Miscarriage of Justice and a Mystery about Words in 1920s England$
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Christopher Hilliard

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198799658

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198799658.001.0001

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It Is Not My Verdict

It Is Not My Verdict

(p.145) 10 It Is Not My Verdict
The Littlehampton Libels

Christopher Hilliard

Oxford University Press

Scurrilous letters continued to circulate after Edith Swan’s acquittal. The authorities moved again nearly two years later. The DPP sought the help of the General Post Office’s Investigative Branch. They ran a sting operation using stamps specially marked with invisible ink. Swan was caught and charged again. Her second trial was another media event, and Travers Humphreys, again appearing for the prosecution, felt obliged to remind the jury ‘that they were not living in the pages of a sensational novel, but . . . were dealing with facts in real life’. Swan appeared before Mr Justice Avory again, who summed up in her favour, but the jury found her guilty and she went to prison for a year.

Keywords:   General Post Office, invisible ink, stamps, surveillance, libel, Horace Avory, Travers Humphreys, Archibald Bodkin

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