By Patrick Markey
Jennifer Mallows had a few things to hide.
Most glaringly, that once she wasn’t Ms. Mallows at all.
Mallows, also went under the name Lady Guinivere Johnson, was recently found guilty of duping British banks out of hundreds of thousands of pounds.
But the con woman used to be a con man. Mallows was born in Dublin as Clive Dillon.
The Examiner newspaper reported recently that Guinivere, who was jailed for 30 months in England, had a sex change in 1980 and married Arnold Mallows.
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According to the paper, Lady Johnson and her husband lived at Kilmurray House near Fermoy, Co. Cork, where they planned to spend £1.25 million restoring the dilapidated house.
The couple arrived in a stretch limo, frequented the local pubs and posed for photographs outside Kilmurray House.
Lady Johnson was convicted on a number of charges at St. Alban’s Crown Court of fraudulently borrowing money, including £46,000 from Lloyds Bank in 1983 and a £207,000 mortgage in 1990 from the National and Provincial Building Society.
The court also heard that Lady Johnson also owed £10,000 to Harrods store in London. The prosecution told the court that for three years from 1994, Mallows, either acting on her own or with her husband defrauded banks and building societies.
She claimed that a fictitious company called Johnson and Johnson had first claim to her house in a bid to thwart creditors. She also claimed that she was a legal advisor to that same company on a retainer of £60,000 a year.
Song and dance
Ireland is changing, and fast.
The Irish Times related one recent story, taken from another newspaper, that illustrates the nation’s shifting character.
According to the report, a Dublin pub owner was recently fined £1,400 for allowing a stay behind after police discovered customers inside the bar at 12:45 a.m. After hammering on the door for 15 minutes, the cops found "30 people, mostly Chinese nationals, drinking and singing to a karaoke machine."
The striking thing, suggests the paper, is that the Chinese were engaged in "two quintessentially Irish cultural practices: singing in the pub and trying to get a drink after hours."
A County Galway truck driver is facing jail time for traumatizing a family whom he bombarded with almost 600 nuisance phone calls last year.
The Examiner reports that Noel Winters, 39, of Killimor admitted harassing Sheilagh Hoary and her husband, Brendan, by persistently communicating with them and using the phone systems to cause annoyance.
Hoary told a judge that she was a "nervous wreck" after the calls made during the summer months. The couple had received almost 600 malicious calls and once received 56 calls in 12 hours. Hoary said they had to take the phone off the hook and left their home because of the stress.
Hoary’s two children had to receive counseling, and her daughter had been badly affected. She had even thought that they were going to be burned out of their home after the caller had played the song "I Am a Fire Starter" over the phone. On another occasion a recording of children screaming was played.
Winter’s lawyer said his client was undergoing psychological assessment and had suffered a change in personality.
Besides the phone calls, the judge said the accused had left letters and "disturbing evidence" behind in the Hoary home after a break in.