Arnold Schwarzenegger is never out of the news, be it as The Governator or more recently over the collapse of his marriage and shocking revelations regarding his lovechild. But you might have missed the recent insane allegations that he was involved in the Lord Lucan murder conspiracy/disappearance in England in the 1970’s – Vice actually broke this story back around Valentine’s Day in February – but here’s a recap for you.
The conspiracy is allegedly the work of an ‘unnamed crime writer’ who argues that Arnold Schwarzenegger murdered Lord Lucan’s nanny in 1974 and subsequently murdered Lord Lucan and hid the body, facilitating one of the greatest mysteries of the modern age. Even before the outlandish claims that follow it’s fairly easy to discredit this theory. Firstly, anonymous sources are never exactly the most reliable of sources and secondly the guy is a fvcking crime writer….he must come up with stuff like this every day before breakfast. Anyway, the conspiracy theory is pretty entertaining so I’ll relay it here, as if you’ve read this far you must probably be interested in what actually happened. Or what was made up as happening and passed off as real.
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It was common knowledge that at the time Lord Lucan and his wife – the appropriately named Lady Lucan – were going through a messy divorce. Lady Lucan was suffering from post-natal depression after the birth of her children and Lord Lucan himself was addicted to gambling which had left him bankrupt. Lucan was desperate, hoping to prevent the public humiliation of bankruptcy and trying to regain gain custody of his children in the face of opposition from his defiant wife. The official line reports that Lady Lucan’s nanny Sandra Rivett was found battered to death in their house. Lord Lucan was subsequently found guilty of the murder but had disappeared and has remained unfound up until this day. So what did Arnold Schwarzenegger have to do with all this?
Basically, the murder conspiracy alleges that Arnold Schwarzenegger was working as hired muscle in London at the time, having relocated to Forest Green following his success in the Mr Universe competition as the area had become somewhat of a mecca for those involved in weightlifting. As ridiculous as that sounds it is actually true – at least the part about Forest Green becoming a mecca for weightlifters. According to the conspiracy, Arnold Schwarzenegger was in London for 18 months – 18 months in which he wasn’t working but just pumping iron and collecting debts for gangsters. In those days there was no prize money for competitions, so it kinda makes sense that Arnold would need to do something else to get by, and what better job for him than being hired muscle? I mean everyone has seen Arnold Schwarzenegger movies right? There’s no way anyone would fvcking mess with him.
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Arnie was working for the gambling club owners, bopsing around in a transit van with a lead pipe wrapped in elastoplast (apparently this was to keep the grip on the lead pipe when they were bashing the shit out of people with it, as lead pipe is notoriously sloppy) and collecting their debts. In the 60’s gambling wasn’t as developed as it is today and there was no cash at any of the tables, it was all I.O.U.’s and as such, the guys in charge of the casinos had to send out heavies to collect the debts the day after the games.
Anyway, at the time, Arnold Schwarzenegger was skint and was desperate to get a green card so he could make it into the United States. He saw the U.S. as the stepping stone to his career. He was completely desperate to obtain a green card. In those days though, it was pretty tough to obtain one – you needed to be squeaky clean, have a lot of money and a sponsor. Arnold Schwarzenegger didn’t have any of these at the time. But he had come into contact with Lord Lucan through collecting his gambling debts. Lord Lucan was a connected guy through his family name and one of his best friends just happened to be a U.S. Senator. Now, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Lord Lucan were both desperate guys at this time for different reasons…..are you starting to connect the dots?
That’s right. So Arnold Schwarzenegger asked Lord Lucan to sort him out a green card, and Lord Lucan obliged. But what could Arnold Schwarzenegger do for Lord Lucan? Obviously, the major problem in Lord Lucan’s life right then was his wife, so Arnold Schwarzenegger became The Terminator a couple of decades early. Only, like so many movies he would later be involved in, the best laid plans got completely fucked up.
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The hit was set up so that Lady Lucan’s nanny had the night off and Lord Lucan sorted it so that the door of the house (they were still living together) was unlocked on that fateful night. The plan was for Arnold Schwarzenegger to head over there, bash her on the head with his special lead pipe with the elastoplast, then take the body out into the woods and burn it and skip a ferry out of the country and head to the U.S. The perfect crime.
But of course, it didn’t work out like that. Sandra Rivett was meant to have the night off, but she decided not to and was in the house when The Terminator arrived. Arnie had never seen Lady Lucan before, so when he bumped into Sandra Rivett in the house he assumed she was Lady Lucan and bashed her on the head and killed her. Bang. Instant kill. Lord Lucan came down to help Arnie get rid of the body and they realised he killed the wrong woman. They’re fucked. Arnold Schwarzenegger realises his best option is to scarper and get the hell out of dodge so he legs it. Lord Lucan is left there trying to figure out what to do when Lady Lucan comes down. She goes crazy and Lord Lucan figures he has no other option but to take her out. Only he was too much of a pussy so couldn’t kill her; he just attacked her and beat her up a bit. He legged it out of the house where Arnold Schwarzenegger was still waiting in the getaway car. So he jumped in and they sped off into the night.
Now, they both realise there were pretty much fucked. Arnold Schwarzenegger had killed the wrong woman and Lord Lucan is going crazy about it and the fact that he beat the shit out his wife and she knew it was him. The murder conspiracy goes that Arnold Schwarzenegger weighed up his options, and decided that the best course of action was for him to kill Lord Lucan. Lord Lucan was the only person linking him to the crime and there was no way he was going to keep quiet – by attacking his wife and not killing her he had pretty much blown all chance of ever keeping custody of his kids and avoiding bankruptcy. Arnie saw no other way out but to whack him. So he did, and dumped the body in the secret location where he had been planning to dump Lady Lucan.
The plan worked perfectly for him. He skipped town and nobody associated him with the crime – Lady Lucan fingered Lord Lucan for it as he had attacked her immediately afterward, so why would anyone suspect Arnold Schwarzenegger of being involved? The disappearance of Lord Lucan went on to become one of the biggest mysteries in the world, whereas Arnold Schwarzenegger went on to become one of the biggest celebrities in the world, and then the Governor of California. I guess if anything this story is sordid enough to allow the protagonist a future in politics.
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But is there any truth in this murder conspiracy? Probably not. It seems certain that although most of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s official biographies state that he did spend time in Forest Gate to focus on his bodybuilding career, they also state that this occurred in 1967, and that he entered the United States in 1968. This was 6 full years before Lord Lucan’s disappearance, and it’s reported that Arnold was competing in Mr Universe competitions and living in the United States at this point. Of course, due to to the considerable power and influence he now possesses I guess it is possible to argue that he has altered all of his official biographies to keep him as far out of the picture regarding the Lord Lucan incident, but that does seem slightly unrealistic. However, the fact that so obvious a flaw could be pointed out by a dumb blogger like me makes me wonder why this ‘crime writer’ bothered to make such a long, elaborate and detailed account of the events.
Also Vice say that when lawyer Giovanni Di Stefano officially asked Arnold Schwarzenegger if he had any involvement in Lord Lucan’s disappearance, he received a reply of ‘no comment’ and when Di Stefano asked the police if Arnold was an official suspect in the case he received a reply of ‘We can neither confirm or deny the accusation.’ Clearly everyone involved has been watching too many episodes of The X Files as those are some of the classic elements that made the show so popular and frustrating in the late 90’s. So yeah, the Arnold Schwarzenegger murder conspiracy is essentially another dumb conspiracy theory with just about enough going on it to make you think ‘yeah but maybe….’ I doubt we’ll ever find out the truth, but still it was a pretty good read though right?
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