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4 February 2011, 11:51
A dealer arrested in connection with allegations of forged Winston Churchill memorabilia has been released on police bail.
Officers from the Metropolitan Police's Art and Antiques Unit arrested the 65-year-old man in Lymington, Hampshire, last week on suspicion of fraud by misrepresentation.
The arrest came after officers were alerted to a number of the wartime prime minister's books and memorabilia, alleged to have fake signatures, being offered for sale on auction website eBay or directly during the last 18 months.
These items were all said to be signed by Churchill himself, thereby increasing their value by as much as 1,000%, a police spokesman said.
He added that officers seized a number of calligraphy pens with ink and approximately 30 signed books by authors such as JRR Tolkien, TS Eliot and Robert Louis Stevenson, which are also alleged to have fake signatures.
The arrested man was bailed to return to Lyndhurst police station in early May.