Out of the Blue

Poisonous Mushrooms: Monsieur Girard's Perfect Crime

By FDL on

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Poisonous Mushrooms: Monsieur Girard's Perfect Crime
Photo Melissa / Flickr

The world’s most famous crime involving mushrooms occurred in France in the 1800s. Here, Monsieur Girard had invented a methodical, scientific means of benefitting from the life insurance payouts of his friends, whom he poisoned after inviting them to an excellent dinner of poisonous mushrooms – the notorious Amanita Death Cap mushroom.

First, he made contact with people who looked like one of his dear, trusted friends or relatives. He then took out a life insurance policy in their name, sending the double to fill out all the appropriate paperwork.

Later he invited the victim to dinner, served up the poisonous mushrooms, and when the victim died (a few days later) he collected the payout.

Discovered by a suspicious insurer, Monsieur Girard met with an unpleasant end: he was imprisoned and then put to the guillotine.

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