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Vidocq, Eugène François (1775-1857)
Date of Birth. Day 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 Month January February March April May June July August September October November December Year Please fill in a complete birthday Enter a valid birthday. Thank You! All Categories New Arrivals. Polo Assn. Tablets 7 - 7. Despite his position as chief of a police authority, Vidocq remained a wanted criminal. His forgery conviction had never been fully dismissed, so alongside complaints and denunciations, his superiors repeatedly received requests from the prison director of Douai, which they ignored.
She came to live in the household at Rue de l'Hirondelle, where Vidocq's mother and a niece of hers, the year-old Fleuride Albertine Maniez born March 22, , also lived.
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Vidocq's wife, who was ailing throughout their marriage, died in June in a hospital. Six weeks later, on 30 July , Vidocq's mother died at age She was buried with honours, and her requiem was performed in Notre Dame Cathedral.
Events of the s affected the police apparatus. His successor was the ultra-reactionary Charles X , during whose oppressive reign police agents were regularly withdrawn from their original activities. Finally, Vidocq's immediate superior, police chief Henry, retired and was succeeded by Parisot, who was soon superseded by the ambitious but also very formal Marc Duplessis. The antipathy between Vidocq and Duplessis was great. Time and time again, Duplessis complained about trivial matters, for example, that Vidocq's agents spent time in brothels and bars of ill repute.
Vidocq's explanation that they had to do this to establish contacts and gather information was ignored. When Vidocq received two official warnings within a short time, he had had enough. On 20 June , the year-old handed in his resignation:. Depuis dix-huit ans, je sers la police avec distinction. I've never received any criticism from your predecessors. I must think therefore that I never earned any.
Mémoires de Vidocq, chef de la police de Sureté jusquen 1827, tome II (French Edition)
Since your appointment to the Second Division, this is the second time you did me the honor to address me by complaining about my agents. Am I their master in the time they spend out of office?
To save you, sir, the trouble of sending me further similar complaints in the future, and me the inconvenience of receiving them, I have the honor to solicit you for accepting my resignation. He then wrote his memoirs with the help of a ghostwriter. Vidocq, who was a rich man after his resignation, became an entrepreneur. He mainly employed released convicts — both men and women. This caused an outrageous scandal in society and led to disputes.
In addition, the machines cost money, the semi-skilled workers needed food and clothing, and the customers refused to pay marked prices with the argument that he had a seemingly cheaper workforce. The company did not last long; Vidocq went bankrupt in In the short time while he was away from Paris, both Delavau and Duplessis had to resign their posts, and the July Revolution of forced Charles X to abdicate. Criticism of Vidocq and his organization grew. The July Monarchy caused insecurities in society, and there was a cholera outbreak in One of its victims was General Jean Maximilien Lamarque.
Allegedly Vidocq's group cracked down on the rioters with great severity. Not all of the police approved of his methods, and rivalries developed. A rumour arose that Vidocq had initiated the theft that led to his reinstatement himself to show his indispensability. One of his agents had to go to prison for two years because of that affair, but Vidocq's involvement could not be proved. More and more defenders claimed that Vidocq and his agents were not credible as eyewitnesses, since most of them had criminal pasts themselves.
Vidocq's position was untenable, and on 15 November , he once again resigned, using the pretext of his wife being ill. This urgent circumstance will preclude my ability to steer the future operations of the security brigade. Please accept my resignation and my sincere thanks for all the marks of kindness with which you deigned to grace me.
While, under any circumstances, I was happy to serve you, you can count on my loyalty and devotion by any means. Vidocq's successor was Pierre Allard. In , Vidocq founded Le bureau des renseignements "Office of Information" , a company that was a mixture of a detective agency and a private police force. It is considered to be the first known detective agency. His squad, which initially consisted of eleven detectives, two clerks and one secretary, pitted itself on behalf of businesspeople and private citizens against Faiseurs crooks, fraudsters, and bankruptcy artists , occasionally using illegal means.
From , Vidocq quarreled constantly with the official police because of his activities and his questionable relations with various government agencies such as the War Department. On 28 November , the police executed a search and seizure and confiscated over 3, files and documents. A few days later, Vidocq was arrested and spent Christmas and New Year in jail.
He was charged with three crimes, namely the acquisition of money by deception, corruption of civil servants, and the pretension of public functions. In February , after numerous witnesses had testified, the judge dismissed all three charges. Vidocq was free again. Vidocq increasingly became the subject of literature and public discussions.
Balzac wrote several novels and plays that contained characters modeled after Vidocq. The agency flourished, but Vidocq continued to make enemies, some of them powerful. On 17 August , on behalf of Police Prefect Gabriel Delessert, 75 police officers stormed his office building and arrested him and one of his agents. This time, the case seemed to be clear.
In an investigation of defalcation , he had made an illegal arrest and had demanded a bill of exchange for the embezzled money from the arrested fraudster. For the next few months, year-old Vidocq was remanded into custody in the Conciergerie. On 3 May , the first hearings finally took place before judge Michel Barbou, a close friend of Delessert.
During the trial, Vidocq had to give testimony about many other cases, among them, the kidnappings of several women whom he had allegedly delivered to monasteries against their will at the behest of their families. Also, his activities as a money lender and the possible benefits from it were examined. Finally, he was sentenced to five years imprisonment and a fine of 3, francs. The hearing on 22 July took a matter of minutes, and after eleven months in the Conciergerie, Vidocq was free once again. The harm was done, however. The lawsuit had been very expensive, and his reputation was damaged.
Business at the agency suffered. Moreover, Delessert tried to get him expelled from the city for being a former criminal. Although the attempt failed, Vidocq increasingly considered selling his agency, but he could not find a qualified and reputable buyer. In the following years, Vidocq published several small books in which he depicted his life to directly refute the rumours that were being circulated about him.
In , he presented an essay on prisons, penitentiaries, and the death penalty. Customer Reviews. Write a review. Ask a question. Pricing policy About our prices. We're committed to providing low prices every day, on everything.
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