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Home » News » General » Wealthy International fugitive suspected to be holed-up in Tuli block

Wealthy International fugitive suspected to be holed-up in Tuli block

Publishing Date : 11 September, 2017

Author : THABO BAGWASI

A wealthy British aristocratic alleged nanny-killer is suspected to be holed-up in Botswana in the white Tuli Block enclave after fleeing the UK following the murder of his children’s minder 35 years ago.


According to communication on a UK on-line police platform, John Bingham, the 7th Earl of Lucan otherwise commonly known as Lord Lucan, has been sighted in Gaborone and allegedly stays in Tuli Block, in the North Eastern tip of the country. The disappearance of Lord Lucan, a scion of a wealthy and traditionally privileged caste of the English society has baffled and captivated the English imagination in equal measure for decades.


Lord Lucan allegedly murdered Sandra Rivett on the 7th of November 1974.Rivett was a nanny to his children, hired by his estranged wife. It is alleged that Lord Lucan had mistaken Rivett for his ex-wife, Veronica Duncan with whom they had been engaged in a marathon custody battle for their three children. Lucan disappeared into thin air a few days after the murder of Rivett.


So privileged and blue-blooded was Lord Lucan that he was once turned down an offer to play the role of James Bond. In his heyday he pursued playboy exploits, cruising around the streets of London in a high end Aston Martin automobile and rattling the blues with expensive powerboats. Lucan had also lived for some time in the United States with family friend and multi-millionaire Marcia Brady Tucker. The news of his engagement had allegedly been covered in UK publications, The Times and The Daily Telegraph in 1963 while the actual wedding was attended by among others a royal princess.


Furthermore, he had received his education at Eton College, one of the most exclusive European schools, founded in 1447 by King Henry VI, where the offspring of the European nobility continue to be tutored. An anonymous comment posted to an unofficial UK Police forum called UK Police, on the 4th of February 2016 has alleged that Lord Lucan has been sighted in Botswana and is living out his days in Tuli. The forum identifies the poster as a resident forum member posting from Southern Africa, under the username of OldAfricaHand.


The character behind OldAfricaHand writes that: “The last “sighting” of Lord Lucan was actually in Gaborone, Botswana, in a building called Debswana House-where Barclays Bank head office was located at that time (about 35 years ago).” “The story attached to this sighting was that Lucan was living in the Tuli Block, which is a sparsely populated area in Eastern Botswana, close to the South Africa border and had come to Gaborone to get some funds (possibly from friends in the UK).” he continues, “The suggestion is that he was being supported by friends who lived in one of the very substantial wildlife lodges that are in Tuli Block. If he was/is-he would be difficult to find.”


The writer then philosophises on possible motives for the murder of the child minder, before adding that, Lucan who would be 83 years old in 2017, might already be late and buried somewhere in an unmarked grave. The forum member also offered British adventurers some support if they wished to pursue the story for British tabloids, The Mirror, The Mail and The Daily Sun and earn some money and fame in the process.


“I guess all this is now moot-Lucan may well have passed away, been buried anonymously and forgotten. Mind you, if there are any forum members who fancy making a name for themselves and a few bob from the Sun, Mirror, Daily Mail, by finding him, il be happy to provide logistical support.” the poster added, but not before including a cheeky smiley face. Another newspaper article in The Gurdian of UK titled ‘Anniversary boots Lucan cottage industry” shares the same sentiments as OldAfricaHand.


It lists as one of the theories that he might have lived in Botswana, “He was smuggled out of Britain by wealthy friends and has spent his life moving around southern Africa. Much of the interest has focused on the Tuli Block in Botswana. Over the years Lucan has been "spotted" playing craps in a hotel there and drinking with expats in a bar.” Another source is a book which chronicles the Lucan hunt by Television crews in theTuli, titled, ‘Twenty chickens for a saddle: The story of an African childhood.’ The book was written by Robyn Scot, a New Zealander and a daughter of medical expatriates who grew up in the north and north east of Botswana.


Her book was reviewed in The Telegraph of UK in 2008. Scot came into the country aged 7 in 1987.She chronicles an encounter with an English television crew following the trail of Lucan in Tuli Block. She writes:”...an English TV crew appeared in Tuli Block after another sinister sighting: ‘fugitive lord seen in Botswana’s Tuli Block, gambling with the local residents.’


She continues to write: “for hours the crew drove up and down the Tuli Block road, finding only abandoned old farmsteads and homes of Afrikaans farmers. “Have you seen this man?” they asked again and again, displaying a constructed picture of what an elderly lord would probably look like. “You know the famous English Lord Lucan, who killed his children’s nanny.” Each time shaking heads. No one had heard of him.”Scot wrote. Other separate online accounts also mention the Tuli connection.Another poster to online Quora.com has also alleges “Lucky” Lucan’s possible presence in the Tuli. Lucan was sometimes called “Lucky” Lucan because of his apparent success in his career as a high stakes gambler.


The anonymous online poster said that they had lived in Cape Town over 20 years ago and that there had been an aristocratic mutual friend who had also been a personal friend of Lucan’s in the 1970’s. However, they stated that with renewed press interest on the case, they mentioned to their friend about the presence of Lucan in the sub region and particularly in the Tuli Block,only to be angrily told off. The online persona,who posted to Quora on the 3rd of  March last year wrote:”...My friend who was normally a passive person was very agitated at this when i told him and he said, “they must stop looking for him.He is certainly dead.He drowned in the (English) Channel and people must stop looking for him.They should leave the poor man alone.”


The writer continues:”i was surprised by the vehemence with which he insisted that Lucan was dead and not to be looked for anymore,but got the feeling that my friend might have known more about it.What he said sounded more like a ‘party line’ for his social group when anyone mentioned Lucan.I had a distinct impression of ranks closing.”

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