The Thief, His Wife and the Canoe (2022) s01e03 Episode Script

Episode 3

I'm going to fake my death.
Don't let me down.
I can now declare John Darwin missing, presumed dead.
Oh, hello.
Could you tell me who I need to speak to about making a life insurance claim, please? - To Dad.
- To John.
I am still having to lie to my parents, to strangers and to our sons.
'We can start again.
Just the two of us.
'Go back to how it used to be.
' Would you mind? It's just a thing we do with our clients.
We might have a little problem.
So you're saying we can't actually live here? I'm going to fly back to the UK and tell the police I've had amnesia.
And I suppose you have a brilliant alternative, do you? Sadly, no, I don't.
Well, then.
"Well, then", what? Me not having an alternative to your terrible idea does not then suddenly make your terrible idea a good idea.
Why would you do this to me, Anne? Because you have doubted me at every single stage of this.
Of our life, even.
And the thing is at every single stage, I have proven you wrong.
Really? Which I will do now, too.
I will go ahead with my plan.
We will be reunited with the boys.
And we will be able to start again, with a clean slate.
'In actual fact, 'John did, in the end, entertain the notion 'that his plan might not work in its entirety 'And came up with a fallback story, 'which I had to learn, word for word.
'But there was no stopping him returning to the UK 'Leaving me feeling as powerless as I had ever felt.
' 'All travelling to Central London, 'please follow signs for the Heathrow Express 'or the London Underground.
'For more information, please contact' 'And waiting, alone 'for what I knew was coming.
' Excuse me? Are you OK? You look a bit upset.
I'm not sure.
I think I've lost my wife and sons.
Where are we? This is Tottenham Court Road.
No, I meant what city? OK, so I'm going to leave you here now.
You just tell them what you told me, and hopefully, they can help you work out what's going on.
Thank you.
Hi, there.
Are you a a police officer? I am.
How can I help you, sir? I think I might be a missing person.
Oh, right.
And why d'you think that, then? I-I think I have a wife and sons, but I don't know where they are.
I-I d-don't know where I've been.
I do I don't remember anything.
And when you say you can't remember anything I I think I have amnesia.
Because the last thing I remember is our holiday in Norway.
OK, and do you know when that was? Summer 2000.
And d'you know what year it is now, sir? Winter 2000? It's actually December 2007.
No OK.
Do you remember your name? Yes.
Yeah, I do.
I do remember my name My name Is Darwin.
John Darwin.
Can you just take a seat over there for me for a second, Mr Darwin? I'll be right back.
I'm so sorry, so sorry.
Hello? 'Hi, there.
Could I speak to Mark Darwin, please?' - Yes, speaking.
- 'Er, good evening.
'My name is Sergeant Clark-Darby, 'from West End Central police station.
' - Hello.
- 'I've been in touch with Hartlepool Police, 'and I'm not really sure how to say this, so I'll just say it straight.
'A man has just presented himself at our front desk, 'claiming to be your father.
' Sorry, I'm at a wedding, I can't hear you very well.
Can you just give me ten seconds? Just wait.
Sorry, can Can you just say that again, please? For a second, I-I thought you said my father.
'Yeah, I did.
' - My father's dead.
- 'Yeah.
'Or, at least, I know he was declared dead - 'and obviously this guy could be a complete crank.
'But he's been asking questions about Chester-le-Street, 'your mother, Anne, and Anthony.
' Love, are you OK? I can be there in about 20 minutes, and I'll call you when I get there.
- 'It'll be a crank.
' - I'm sure it is a crank.
But how would he have - known about the old house? - 'No idea, but' Listen, mate, I'm about to head into the Tube.
I'll call you as soon as I get there, OK? So, if it is him, the psychiatrist who's just examined him suggests that we don't ask too many questions.
- Right.
- He's very disorientated right now.
And although, of course, you're gonna wanna know a million things, it might just make things worse.
I, I, er Do you think it's him? - I really hope so, fella, for you all.
- Thank you.
- Come in.
Ready? - Yeah.
Oh, Mark.
Oh, my God.
Oh My My boy.
My Mark.
Oh, my God.
Oh, my God! Come here, son.
Come here Come here, son.
Give me a hug.
Come here.
Oh, Dad, I've missed you! I've missed you so much! I've missed you too, son.
Very much.
We have to call Mam, Dad.
And Anthony.
We have to call everyone! I always had a feeling, Dad.
I always had a feeling.
Me too, Ant.
Me too.
Hello? 'Mam?' - Is that you, Mark? - 'Yes, Mam, it's me.
'Something extraordinary has happened.
You're not gonna believe this, but I'm in a police station in in London.
And I'm sitting next to Dad! You're with who? 'You heard right, Mam.
I'm with Dad.
' He's, er He's alive! He's had amnesia, but he's alive, and he's well.
And he's sitting right next to me.
'And, er 'I'm going to pass you on to him now.
' Is that you, Anne? Oh, my God! John? Oh, Anne.
It is you.
I-I've had amnesia.
'And I-I'm so confused.
' I don't know what's going on.
'I'm sorry.
' Oh, John, I can't believe it.
I can't believe it's really you.
I am so sorry my darling.
- No need to be sorry, I just - 'Mam, it's me again.
Erm' He's too upset, I think.
But he's well, and Can you believe it? I just keep thinking it's some sort of dream.
Oh, Mark, I can't believe it.
I'm so happy.
I just Where's he been? Has he said what's happened to him? 'He's not sure.
He's pretty confused, to be honest.
'But the doctors are looking at him.
' But in the end, I really don't care.
I'm just I'm just so happy he's back.
Oh, sweetheart, it's amazing.
But listen, I need to be with Dad right now, so I'd better go.
And we'll call you later from Anthony's.
Dad's gonna be staying there for now.
OK? Oh, OK.
So they're not keeping him, the police, or? 'No, no, no.
He's free.
' OK, well, yes, call me later.
Yeah, I will.
And, Mam, you'd better start checking flights back to the UK, yeah? I will.
'OK, Mam.
Erm we love you.
' Mark, sweetheart You have your father back.
I'm so happy for you.
Mark? Anne? Mam? Mam? Amy? - Ames! - Yeah? Is Dave Leigh still based in Miami? Yeah, I think so.
We need him on this Hartlepool story, pronto.
'So has she booked her flight back?' 'No, actually, she hasn't.
' She said she has some things to sort out there.
Her stuff's just arrived, and she needs to sign some legal documents for it.
Can't that wait? - Apparently not.
- Listen, Dad's on all the news channels now.
- We'd better call Grandad.
- Ok.
'spoken to his wife in Panama, where she emigrated 'six weeks ago.
'He's currently enjoying spending time with his sons' Yeah, I've just landed now.
- 'And you've got the address?' - Yeah, I've got it.
And as I said, every single fucking hack in the UK is heading there.
So you need to be the first, Dave, OK? - 'The first.
' - Yes.
I'll call you when I find her.
- Hey, Stef.
- Hey, Dave.
- Where are we heading? - Downtown.
Let's take the freeway.
We need to move it.
That was New Year 2002.
We came up to stay in the new house, d'you remember that? The new house? In Seaton Carew.
We bought a house in Seaton? Two, actually.
I used to go on holiday there with my parents.
Is is my dad still alive? He is, yeah.
90 years old, still going strong.
We called him earlier.
He's so happy, can't wait to see you.
And what happened to the houses? Well, Mam sold them both when she went to Panama.
Why would she go there? We really struggled to understand it too, but she went on holiday there.
Seemed to fall in love with it, and It was really hard for her, Dad.
Living in the same house you disappeared from.
I think, in the end, she just wanted a completely new life.
You know? - Gracias.
- De nada.
What are the chances she'll still be here? Slim to zero.
I mean, if the husband you thought was dead turns up after five and a half years, you'd get the first flight back, right? If that is the story.
Mrs Darwin, are you in there? Mrs Darwin, I'm a reporter.
But a nice one.
And I just wanted to talk to you about the amazing news regarding your husband.
Mrs Darwin? She's gone.
I'm surprised he's still kipping through all this.
What time did we get here? About five two.
Mrs Darwin, are you in there? OK.
Let's try the airport.
What do you want? Hi there.
I just wanted to chat to you about the amazing news.
I don't want to chat.
Or maybe I could help you in some way? You can't help me.
Nobody can.
Well, it might help to talk.
It often does.
How do I know you really are a journalist? Hang on.
So, I've got my press card here.
And I'm just sliding it under the door for you now.
I suppose you'd better come in.
Not him.
Just you.
Thank you.
See you downstairs.
I mean, what was it like? When you got the call from your son, you must have just been so, so happy? I was, yes.
And have you actually spoken to him yourself? - To your husband? - Yes, a couple of times.
What was it like? Very strange, but wonderful, obviously.
And was he able to tell you where he'd been, at all? For five and a half years? No, he's still very confused.
And a lot of people are asking, Anne, why you haven't just got straight on a plane.
Back to London, to see him.
I have important legal stuff to do here, to do with my residency.
I should actually be at my lawyer's right now.
Oh, right.
OK, Imma level with you, Anne.
In about an hour or so, I guess, half the journalists in England are gonna be knocking at this door.
And I promise you, most of them aren't like me.
So I'm gonna make a suggestion, and feel free to tell me to bugger off.
Go on.
I-I drive you to your lawyer's now.
You don't look in any state to get into a car on your own.
And then, whenever you've done whatever you need to do there, I'll take you somewhere safe and quiet - wherever you want - but away from here.
And then you tell me your story.
As much or as little as you want.
Over here, to the left.
Can I take your bags for you? 'Going to my lawyer's turned out not to be such a good idea.
'As Dave predicted, the press found us.
' 'But his plan to lose them did actually work, in the end.
' Des? One of our readers found this on the internet.
Oh, my Christ.
- OK, so the police need to see this, like, now.
- OK.
'And then, just as the light was going, 'we found a small hotel a few miles from the airport.
' Sorry, I've just got to take this.
- Hey, Des.
- 'Is she in earshot?' No, we're just checking in.
She's on the other side of the lobby.
And is she still saying that everything's kosher? Yeah, yeah, 100%.
I mean, she's a dreadful liar, and I don't believe a word of it, - but yeah, she is.
- 'Ok.
'So, I've just emailed you a photo, which you need to show her 'And call me when she's seen it.
' Do not now let her out of your sight.
OK, Anne.
I need you to look at something.
And I'm really sorry, but this is not gonna be easy for you.
It's got a timecode imprinted on it, dated 18 months ago.
So I'm afraid we know you've been lying.
My sons are never gonna forgive me.
So, yes, obviously I haven't been completely truthful with you.
But only about the timing.
John HAS had amnesia.
And for a long time, I did think he was dead.
But the truth is he came back.
About a year and a bit after he disappeared.
- So he just turned up one day? - Yes.
Night, actually.
I was watching the telly, and there was a knock on the door, and it was him.
Must have been - an unbelievable moment.
- It was.
I couldn't believe it.
I thought I was going to faint or have a heart attack.
And so did he tell you where he'd been? Well, that's it, he didn't know.
Still doesn't.
That bit's all real.
So the canoe accident, that wasn't a fake at all? No.
And the accident was actually what caused the amnesia, or? Yes, probably, although obviously he couldn't remember.
And so, he came back before or after the life insurance claim was made? Oh, after, definitely.
Otherwise, I would never have made it, would I? Right.
So, the obvious question, Anne, is why didn't you both just go to the police at that point? I know.
And we should have.
And we should have told the boys.
We absolutely should have.
- I know I wanted to.
- Right.
Why didn't you? John wanted to get financially straight first.
Sell all the properties, so we could pay all the insurance money back.
So, at that point, then, it WAS about the money? No, it was about getting straight.
So you've been getting straight for three years? Yes.
And you're continuing to get straight out here? I am actually very tired now, David.
Would you mind if we picked this up in the morning now? Sure.
Sorry, I mean Maybe I've misunderstood, or something, Anne, but if you wanted to pay the money back, why did you come here? Emigrate here, buy an apartment? Please.
Just so as you know, um the police have been sent the picture as well.
So they're obviously gonna want to talk to John now.
I imagine they'll want to talk to you, too.
So I think you need to head back to the UK.
Sooner, rather than later.
I can look into booking you some flights, if you wanted me to.
That would be very helpful.
No problem.
Right, um Get some sleep, Anne.
Good night.
And we had it in Who the hell's that? Good evening, sir.
I have a warrant here for the arrest of John Ronald Darwin.
- What? - I believe he's staying at this address? He is, yes.
Arrest for what? Can we come in, please? Sure.
He's in here.
Sorry, Dad, these guys want to speak to you about something.
- John Darwin? - Yes.
I'm arresting you on suspicion of fraud.
I beg your pardon? You do not have to say anything, but it may harm your defence if you do not mention, when questioned, something which you later rely on in court.
This is ridiculous.
Anything you do say may be given in evidence.
What fraud? There's nothing to worry about, Ant.
I-I'll be back in an hour or so.
Maybe it's a fake.
No, it's not a fake, Ant! Or she would have answered one of our calls by now, or called us.
It's not a fake, mate.
Wh-What have they done to us? Come here.
So, he's being driven up here now, and the Mirror, who have got one of their reporters with the wife, assure me she is on the way back.
So, hopefully, no lengthy extradition issue there.
Do we think the sons were involved? No idea.
Although one of them did ring earlier, wanting to know if they were gonna be interviewed.
I thought so.
Anyway, Phil, pull up all original files.
I'm gonna liaise with the ECU.
And, Paul you're on Darwin when he gets here.
Car's here, Anne.
Your bag? Stupid old dobbin.
Thank you.
Someone's dug up details of Jaguar here.
What's Jaguar? The company Mam used to buy her apartment in Panama.
We signed directors' forms for it.
They're implying it was some sort of money-laundering thing.
She asked us to sign some forms and we did.
Cos she was our mam.
Seriously, what sort of a person does what they've done? Don't know.
I don't know, but fuck this shit.
No, no, no.
We need to protect ourselves now.
We need to get the truth out there, mate.
Having seen the recent media speculation surrounding our parents since our dad was arrested, we are very much in an angry and confused state of mind.
In the short space of time following our dad's appearance in London on Saturday, we've gone through a roller-coaster of emotions.
From the height of elation at finding him to be alive, to the depths of despair at the recent stories of fraud and these latest pictures.
'We very much feel we have been victims of a large scam.
How could our mam have continued to let us believe our dad had died, when he was very much alive? We've not spoken to either of our parents since our dad's arrest.
And at this present time, we want no further contact with them.
What have I done? I have come back of my own volition.
And if I had something to hide, why would I have done that? Well, I wouldn't, would I? Now, yes, I might have got the timing slightly out about my amnesia, but the rest is true.
So trust me I'm sorry, what's your name, again? Mike.
So trust me, Mike.
We're fine.
These clowns won't pin anything on me.
Cos I've done absolutely nothing wrong.
When he disappeared I genuinely did think he'd had an accident and died, because I would never have done that to my boys.
Told them their father was dead if I knew he wasn't.
What sort of a mother would do such a dreadful thing? But I admit, when he finally turned up, after the inquest he did then eventually tell me that he'd planned it all.
So the amnesia thing, that's all made up? He's never had amnesia? That's all made up.
So where was he, Anne? All those years after he came back, where did he live? Next door.
Next door, next door? Yes, number four.
'Flight 549 to Miami, with connections to Manchester, England.
'Boarding will commence in 16 minutes.
' OK.
I have to get this off to London.
Will all this go in the paper? Tomorrow morning.
If I can get it off before we board.
Can you put one other thing in it, then? Can you put in that I am more sorry than I can ever say for what I've done to my children? The truth is, it's not me who should be sitting in front of you.
No? Who is it, then, John? The banks.
The lenders.
No, no, Mike, this needs to be said.
The credit card companies, all of 'em, who lure you in with their promises and their fine words.
They're your best friend when you're borrowing and paying sky-high interest rates, but if they then decide they want their money back, oh they're not so friendly then, are they? No.
And then, if you can't instantly deliver, they will take you down without a second thought.
They will destroy you and everything you've worked for your entire life, without a second thought.
So it's them who should be in the dock.
Not me.
So it WAS all about the money? It became about that, after I came back.
It wasn't that at the start.
- When you first went missing? - Yes.
So what was it about, John? At the start? Well, obviously, I can't remember that.
Can I? OK, so you're still sticking to the story that you have amnesia? I do.
I did.
I do.
From when to when? From a holiday in June 2000 till about mid-2003.
OK, so just after all the money was paid out? Yes.
That's lucky.
And I'd like to add that that money was claimed in good faith by Anne.
They can't claim that back, I'm afraid.
Those are their own rules.
And so you don't remember anything about what happened on the day you went missing? Absolutely not.
But you do remember that you definitely didn't plot to fake your own death for financial gain? No comment.
OK, I am now showing the suspect exhibit JAW-001, which is the front cover of today's Daily Mirror, features a quote from your wife, Anne, taken from an interview she gave to a journalist just yesterday.
And it simply reads, "John never had amnesia.
" So, erm what do you make of that, then, John? Well, if I were you gents, I wouldn't listen to a word she says.
I never have! He does love me, you know.
Sorry? Nothing.
Ok You ok? 'Ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain speaking.
'I do apologise for the inconvenience.
'Would you please immediately return to your seats 'and remain seated until further notice? 'I repeat, could all passengers 'please return to their seats immediately?' I'm David Leigh, I'm with the Daily Mirror.
Go back to your seat, please.
Go back to your seat, please.
The longer you stand there asking me to be gentle, sir, the longer everyone else on this plane has to wait.
Can I just have 30 seconds with her, then, please? Ten.
OK, Anne, I want to say two things.
Firstly, I think you're a good person who, for reasons that are probably very complicated, did a truly dreadful thing.
Second tell the police the truth now.
It's time to accept what you've done and start building the trust with your sons.
OK? Which I believe you can do.
You just gotta take it day by day Anne Darwin? - Yes.
- I'm arresting you on suspicion of fraud.
You do not have to say anything.
But it may harm your defence if you do not mention, when questioned, something you later rely on in court.
Anything you do say may be given in evidence.
Grab your bags, please, Anne.
Definitely needed five blokes with semi-automatics, mate.
Just in case you weren't sure.
- Good luck, Anne.
- Thank you.
John Darwin remains in police custody.
His wife, Anne, was arrested on arrival at Manchester Airport this morning, and will be interviewed shortly.
Following our interviews with the husband and, indeed, comments made by his wife in a national newspaper, we have been authorised to issue holding charges against him of fraud and of obtaining a passport by deceit.
We will continue to interview Mr Darwin.
We are grateful that his memory continues to improve.
Can you say yet whether the sons are involved? 'I'm afraid I can't comment on that at this stage.
' No, we were not fucking involved! 'But obviously we will want to talk to them, in time.
' Wait.
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