Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Arrest over fake Winston Churchill signatures

Police investigating the sale of memorabilia bearing fake signatures of Winston Churchill have arrested a man in Hampshire.

The 65-year-old from Lymington was arrested by officers from the Metropolitan Police Service's Art and Antiques Unit earlier.

He is being held at Lyndhurst Police Station on suspicion of fraud by misrepresentation.

Officers also seized calligraphy pens, ink and about 30 books.

'Increased value'

The force said it had been alerted to a number of books and memorabilia being offered for sale during the last 18 months, purportedly bearing the signature of the former prime minister.

Some of the items had been offered on eBay.

A force spokesman said: "These items were all purportedly signed by Churchill himself, thereby increasing their value as much as 1,000%.

"Attempts at selling the items are believed to have been made via eBay or directly to victims."

The books seized by police also included those by other authors including Tolkien, TS Eliot and Robert Louis Stevenson.

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