Woman who believed husband to be a secret agent discovers he has 13 children and three wives
We've all watched films where the spy poses as the family man. But what about a real life story where a conman claims to be the secret agent, but is really using this as a cover-up for his 13 children, three wives and multiple other partners?
That's exactly what happened to Mary Turner Thomson, when she discovered her husband had been lying to her for years.
Mary met William online in 2000 when she was a single mother with a nine-month-old baby. He seemed like the perfect man, but unfortunately, he was forced to spend to spend long periods of time away due to his job as a CIA agent.
"He was very charming, and we sent emails back and forth before meeting up about two weeks later," she said.
Her partner had told her that he was infertile, so she was shocked to become pregnant just half a year into the relationship.
"After six months of being together I fell pregnant, which was a huge surprise because he told me he was infertile after having mumps as a child," she explained. "l thought he was going to think I’d had an affair because he was so utterly convinced he couldn’t have kids."
However, William's sudden fertility wasn't the only surprise coming her way. Soon enough, Mary's husband was claiming their children were in danger of being kidnapped.
She ended up parting with almost £200,000 ($250,000) to pay off 'blackmailers' who were threatening to take Robyn, now 19, from a previous relationship. Eilidh, now 16, and Zach, now 13.
"By this stage, I was four years in and completely under his control, so l sold everything I owned – my house. my car, my life insurance, everything," she said. "It was a feeding frenzy and, once it started, there was just more and more and more. "I thought if we didn’t give them money, they would kill the kids. I was living in abject terror."
However, in April 2006, Mary received a phone call that changed her entire world.
The woman on the other end of the line told her that William had been married to her for fourteen years and they had five children together.
There were no undercover missions, no blackmailers, no threats on her or her children's lives. William had been lying to her for years in order to cover up his bigamist lifestyle.
"We met in a café and talked for about 12 hours," Mary explained. "When she left at six in the morning, I sent him a text and dumped him. I thought that was appropriate. He tried for months to persuade me, but there was nothing he could say that would ever suck me back in again."
She continued to speak about the multiple other women that her husband had gotten pregnant or proposed to in their time together, saying: "Within six months I was contacted by a pregnant lady who had lost her home because he convinced her to come live with him. He changed his name and I didn’t hear anything for three years. Then I was contacted by a lady, who is quite like my American counterpart."
"She carried on dating him after she found me, and I helped her set up hidden cameras in her home. We set up a police sting and he was arrested, and spent another three years in prison in America, from 2014 to 2017. We think he averages about six women at a time."
If you want to know more about Mary's life with the psychopathic con man, you can read her book The Bigamist: The True Story Of A Husband’s Ultimate Betrayal.