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A Very Brief History Of Impostors

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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This weekend the New York Times looked at the case of Christian Gerhartsreiter, the man who gained notoriety by posing as "Clark Rockefeller," a descendant of the famous family. (This would have been considered a major affront to the city's two tabloid papers, who have owned the story since its inception, had the Times not chosen to run it in the "Styles" section, signifying that the paper's editors did not consider it actual news.) Gerhartsreiter's fraud was uncovered shortly after he kidnapped his 7-year-old daughter. He has subsequently been linked to the disappearance of a California couple some 23 years ago. The drama of his story aside, Gerhartsreiter is far from the first impostor to dupe his way up the social ladder. Here are few others.

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