See also:English criminal, was
See also:born about 1682 at Wolverhampton, where his
See also:father was a
See also:wig-maker . After being apprenticed to a
See also:buckle-maker, he went to
See also:London to learn his
See also:trade, and, getting into
See also:debt, was imprisoned for several years . The acquaintance of many criminals which he made in prison he turned to account after his
See also:release by setting up as a
See also:receiver of stolen goods .
See also:Wild shrewdly realized that it was safer, and in most cases more profitable, to dispose of such
See also:property by returning it to its legitimate owners than to sell it, with the attendant risks, in the open market, and he thus built up an immense business, posing as a recoverer of stolen goods, the thieves receiving a commission on the price paid for recovery . A
See also:act of parliament was passed by which receivers of stolen property were made accessories to the
See also:theft, but Wild's professed " lost property
See also:office " had little difficulty in evading the new
See also:law, and became so prosperous that two branch offices were opened . From profiting by robberies in which he had no
See also:share, Wild naturally came to arrange robberies himself, and he devised and controlled a huge organization, which plundered London and its approaches wholesale . Such thieves as refused to
See also:work with him received
See also:short shrift . The notorious
See also:Sheppard, wearied of Wild's exactions, at last refused to
See also:deal with him, whereupon Wild secured his arrest, and himself arrested Sheppard's confederate, " Blueskin." In return for Wild's services in tracking down such thieves as he did not himself
See also:control, the authorities for some
See also:time tolerated the offences of his numerous agents, each a specialist in a particular kind of robbery, and so themselves strengthened his position . If an arrest were made, Wild had a plentiful supply of false evidence at
See also:hand to establish his agents'
See also:alibi, and he did not hesitate to obtain the conviction, by similar means, of such thieves as refused to recognize his authority . Such stolen property as could not be returned to the owners with profit was taken abroad in a
See also:purchased for this work . At last either the authorities became more strict or Wild less cautious . He was arrested, tried at the Old
See also:Bailey, and after being acquitted on a
See also:charge of stealing
See also:lace, found guilty of taking a
See also:reward for restoring it to the owner without informing the
See also:police .
He was hanged at
See also:Tyburn on the 24th of May 1725 .
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