Eddie Chapman was an English criminal and spy during World War 2. Prior to the war Chapman was a notorious criminal and womaniser. He was constantly in trouble with the law. However after war broke out he went on to become one of England’s greatest assets against the Germans. Eddie Chapman was born on 16 November 1914 in Burnopfield in County Durham, England. He became a notorious safecracker with London West End gangs, spending several stretches in jail for these crimes. He had affairs with a number of women on the fringes of London high society and then allegedly blackmailed them with photographs taken by an accomplice. Well along into his criminal career he was arrested in Scotland and charged with blowing up the safe of the headquarters of the Edinburgh Co-operative Society. Let out on bail, he fled to Jersey in the Channel Islands where he attempted unsuccessfully to continue his crooked ways. In 1939 Chapman was in a restaurant in Jersey with his lover Betty Farmer when police attempted to arrest him for his crimes on the mainland. He managed to escape by jumping out of a window, but later that night he was arrested by Jersey police for burgling a nightclub. He was sentenced to 2 year in prison in Jersey. Chapman was in prison when the Channel Islands were invaded by Germany. He was transferred Fort de Romainville in Paris. Chapman volunteered his services to the Germans as a spy and was eventually accepted by the German secret service, the Abwehr. The Abwehr saw Chapman as an ideal candidate for a spy. He claimed to be hostile to the British state, not least because he was still wanted by the police for his crimes on the UK mainland. His connections with the criminal underworld offered the possibility that he could recruit additional agents for the Germans, and his expertise with explosives would enable him to carry out acts of sabotage. He was trained in a secret German spy school in France by Captain Stephan von Gröning. He was trained in...
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