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O Caso do Angola Banco e Metropole. Alves Reis e Marang, Relatorio sobre as cartas de Alves Reis apreendidas a Carlos Chaves.

OSORIO, Antonio Horta.

Published by Lisbon, Estamparia do Banco de Portugal, 1927., 1927
Soft cover
From Richard C. Ramer Old and Rare Books (New York, NY, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

Large 8°, original printed wrappers (very minor fading and soiling; slight fraying to spine near foot). In very good condition. Small rectangular printed ticket of Livraria Arcadia, 66, C. do Combro, 68, Lisboa in upper outer corner of inside front wrapper. Number "3" circled, in ink, in upper margin of front wrapper. 103, xxxi pp. Appears to lack two folding leaves. *** FIRST and ONLY EDITION [?]. This legal brief by a lawyer for the Banco de Portugal refutes defenses made on behalf of Artur Virgilio Alves Reis, perpetrator of one of the most sensational crimes in all history, and attempts to shed additional light on the matter. Artur Virgilio Alves Reis did not produce counterfeit bank notes; rather, he forged documents purportedly from the Bank of Portugal authorizing him during 1925 to have 300 million escudos (then equal to over $15,000,000) worth of 500$00 escudo notes (the largest then in circulation) printed by the firm in London, Waterlow and Sons, which produced Portugal's paper currency, and to take delivery of same. The documents also called for secrecy. The funds were used to finance Alves Reis' failing Banco de Angola e Metrópole. No one could fault these notes, as they were printed from the same plates and on the same paper as were used for the Bank of Portugal orders. Except for a tell-tale flaw in their numbering they might never have been identified. Before this flaw caused the scheme to be discovered, Alves Reis was attempting to purchase the Bank of Portugal; had he succeeded, the crime might never have come to light.Reis's fraud had enormous repercussions on the economy and politics of Portugal. By the end of 1925 Reis had managed to introduce into the Portuguese economy escudo bank notes worth £1,007,963 at 1925 exchange rates, a figure which in perspective is equivalent to 0.88% of Portugal?s nominal GDP at the time. The Portuguese currency was severely compromised and existing 500$00 escudo bank notes had to be withdrawn.When Reis's fraud became public knowledge in December 1925 it brought about a crisis of confidence in the Portuguese government. This crisis had a strong effect on the 28 May 1926 nationalist military coup against the Primeira República government of President Bernardino Machado which brought the República Autoritária to power, heralding the dictatorship of Prime Minister António de Oliveira Salazar from 1932 to 1968. [Salazar was briefly Finance Minister in 1926, but resigned; in 1928 he accepted the post again, but on condition that he be given a free hand. Given the full financial control that he demanded by General António de Fragoso Carmona, he put Portuguese finances on a stable footing for the first time in the twentieth century].The Bank of Portugal sued Waterlow & Sons in the High Court in London. In one of the most complex trials in English legal history, the case was finally settled in the House of Lords on 28 April 1932 in favour of the Banco de Portugal, which was awarded £610,392 in damages. Waterlow & Sons' business never completely recovered; it was finally acquired by another firm in 1961. *** See Murray Teigh Bloom, The Man Who Stole Portugal; Andrew Bull, "Alves Reis and the Portuguese Bank Note Scandal of 1925" in The British Historical Society, No. 24: pp 22-57 (1997); C. Kisch, The Portuguese Bank Note Case. Porbase locates 11 copies, 8 in the Biblioteca Nacional de Portugal, 2 at the Centro Cultural of the Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian (Paris), and 1 at the Universidade Católica João Paulo II (Lisboa). WorldCat locates a single copy, at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Copac locates a single copy, at the London School of Economics. Not located in Hollis or Orbis. Not located in Melvyl. Bookseller Inventory # 24781

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Bibliographic Details

Title: O Caso do Angola Banco e Metropole. Alves ...

Publisher: Lisbon, Estamparia do Banco de Portugal, 1927.

Publication Date: 1927

Binding: Soft cover

Edition: 1st Edition

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