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Alred Benjamin (stamp forger)

Return To Catalogue - Jeffreys forgeries - Sarpy (stamp forger's trial)

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Alfred Benjamin and Julian Hippolite Sarpy (Benjamin and Sarpy) sold many of Jeffreys forgeries in their shop (according to 'Philatelic forgers, their lives and works' by Varro E. Tyler). Benjamin named his house 'Sydney View Villa', due to his succesful business in selling the first stamps of New South Wales.

Jeffreys forgeries with '49' cancel of Wagga-Wagga, that made Benjamin call his house 'Sydney View Villa'.

(Jeffreys forgeries of the Sydney Views of New South Wales)

In 1892 Jefrreys was convicted to six months imprisonment with hard labour for 'conspiracy to defraud the public' for his stamp forging activities. For the trial of Jeffreys, Benjamin and Sarpy, click here for Jeffreys forgeries, click here.

In the Philatelic Record of 1891 (December 1891, page 298), Benjamin complains of forgeries of Bermuda himself (just a few weeks before he got arrested in December 1891?). Although according to Tyler he did sell bogus Bermuda overprints to the famous collector Ferrari:
BERMUDAS STAMPS—A DANGEROUS FORGERY. Sir,—Will you allow me to warn philatelists and dealers against a most dangerous forgery, which has been in the London market for some years, and defies detection from the greatest experts? The stamp in question is the Bermuda penny rose, watermark CC and crown, surcharged threepence slanting across the stamp, issued in 1873. Last year I wrote to a certain firm of large dealers, who immediately sent me one on approval for 30s. On examining the stamp I was surprised to see that the surcharge was printed on the penny rose, but watermarked CA and crown, a stamp that was not issued till 1884, this being conclusive proof that it is impossible for it to be a genuine surcharge. I sent the stamp back at once, and the explanation was that it was sent out in mistake. May I advise all collectors and dealers to examine these stamps, to see if they have the right watermark on? If not, they may be sure that the surcharge is false. Should there be any doubt on the subject, and the stamps are sent to me, I shall be pleased to give my opinion. For years past I have made the stamps of Bermuda my special study. Sydney View Villa, 46, Oval Road, London, S.W. A. BENJAMIN.

Copyright by Evert Klaseboer