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John Donald Merrett, a University student, was tried at Edinburgh for the murder of his mother, Bertha Merrett, and for uttering forged cheques upon her banking account.
The authorities at first believed that she had committed suicide, and no suspicion was raised for eight months. Merrett was most skilfully defended, and the jury returned a verdict of "Not Proven" on the charge of murder, and guilty of uttering. He received a sentence of twelve months' imprisonment.
In 1954, after a chequered career, under the name of Chesney, he killed his wife and mother-in-law, and then committed suicide.