12. Instances of false reporting in the early stages of the Somerton Body Case.
We’ve already established through re-reading GF’s book that the commonly accepted and widely published images of both the Freeman Rubaiyat and the torn page were not of the original, meaning the press mocked them up after talking to the police.
We were told in another press report published only days after Freeman handed his Rubaiyat to DS Leane that it was torn from a Rubaiyat published in New Zealand by Whitcombe and Tombs spelt Toombs. The report also included the false image of the Freeman Rubaiyat..
One irresistible implication is that this information was also provided by the police. The other that it is also false – for reasons that have yet to become clear.
The press was in close contact with the investigating police prior to and post inquest as you would expect, particularly after DS Leane let them have a look at the Taman Shud slip and acknowledging his senior administrative background in the police force and the importance of the case, it’s hard to imagine him authorising any release of false information.
Yet he did. Twice.
One mistake is acceptable, two is not. Three makes them all deliberate.