- Category : Writers-Fiction
- Type : GE
- Profile : 5/2 - Heretical / Hermit
- Definition : Triple Split
- Incarnation Cross : LAX Incarnation 2
American writer and popular novelist who claimed to be the official biographer of Howard Hughes, one of the biggest literary hoaxes ever perpetrated. He convinced his publisher, McGraw Hill to accept his book for release for $750,000 while his Swiss wife, Edith, laundered his funds into a Swiss bank account under an assumed name. While Edith was in Switzerland, Irving was in various tropical locations, supposedly meeting with Hughes, but actually dallying with Nina van Pallandt, a Danish folk singer. When the Hughes Tool company issued a statement denying the book's validity, Irving responded that Hughes had been meeting with him in secret.
On 1/07/1972, Hughes personally called a press meeting to denounce Irving. The person whose name Edith had used in Switzerland turned up at the bank where Edith had used her name. Handwriting experts who had examined the so-called Hughes letters expressed their doubts of authenticity. Irving's house of cards collapsed and on 3/09/1972 he was indicted on charges of grand larceny.
Irving forfeited $1 million in advances and spent 17 months in jail for fraud. After his release, he went bankrupt in 1976 as the fiasco left him with debts of more than $700,000.
The world famous rogue is the son of a cartoonist. His book fraud contributed to a divorce in 1974. He keeps a low profile with his present wife, and lived near Guadalupe, Mexico, until they made a move to Aspen, Colorado.
His seven well-received novels include the crime-fiction novel, "Trial," in 1991.