Facial recognition experts believe they have solved the enduring mystery surrounding the whereabouts of British professional gambler and suspected murderer Lord Lucan.
Hassan Ugail, Professor of Visual Computing at the University of Bradford, England, says the missing-presumed-dead aristocrat appears to be very much alive. He claims his world-leading AI photo analysis technology has identified that Lucan and an 87-year-old living in Brisbane, Australia, are the same man, or they are identical twins.
Lucan, full name Richard John Bingham, 7th Earl of Lucan, disappeared in 1974. That’s after he allegedly bludgeoned to death his children’s nanny, Sandra Rivett, at his home in Belgravia, an upmarket London district. Scotland Yard investigators believe it was a case of mistaken identity, and his intended target was his wife.
Lucan’s car was later found in Newhaven, a ferry port on England’s south coast, its interior stained with blood. Its owner had disappeared without a trace.
Detectives found three cards from the board game Cluedo in the car: “Colonel Mustard,” “the lead piping,” and “the hall.”
Lucan, a heavily mustachioed ex-military man, bore a passing resemblance to the Cluedo character. Meanwhile, a piece of lead piping was the weapon used in Rivett’s murder. And while the victim’s body was found in the kitchen of the Lucans’ home, there was a large amount of blood in the hall, suggesting this is where the killing may have taken place.
Few crimes have captured the imagination of the British public as Rivett’s murder and Lucan’s subsequent disappearance. Hundreds of unsubstantiated sightings of the rogue earl have been reported around the world.
Lucan was officially presumed dead in 1992 and declared legally dead in 1999, allowing his son, George, to inherit his title.
‘Never Been Wrong’
Ugail claims his recognition technology has “never been wrong.” It was used to identify the two Russian agents responsible for poisoning the former spy, Sergei Skripal, and his daughter in Salisbury, England.
It also identified three men linked to the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018 at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, and it helped uncover an alleged Nazi war criminal last year.
“[The photos] produced a match. This isn’t an opinion, it’s science and mathematical fact,” Ugail said. “We can now confirm things that would have been impossible just five years ago. We’ve compared thousands and thousands of people and there have been literally millions of photos that we’ve analyzed using the algorithm.
“People of different ethnicities, different ages – the only time it will fail is if you put in identical twins. It only takes a few minutes to run it and it comes back with a percentage – a ‘similarity index,’” he explained.
The mystery senior citizen in Brisbane is the same age as Lucan would be. He is “a Buddhist” who previously lived in Nepal before coming to Australia, where he “moved from house to house,” according to The Daily Mail.
He was tracked down by Rivett’s son, Neil Berriman, who has devoted his life to finding his mother’s killer. It’s unclear what led Berriman to the man in Brisbane.
The Aston Martin-driving Lucan frequented illegal gambling houses for the wealthy in Belgravia and Mayfair until casino gaming was legalized in the UK in 1964. With John Aspinall, he was a founding member of Mayfair’s exclusive Claremont Club casino, where baccarat was his game of choice.
He was known by his gambling friends as “Lucky.”
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