Infamous fraudster Lady Bruce vows to return to Scotland
By Rory Reynolds
THE fraudster ex-wife of a Scottish aristocrat has pledged to return to Scotland on her release from a Texan prison.
Amanda Grimes – who conned victims into thinking she was a Hollywood screenwriter – has vowed to return to Scotland to be with her three children.
The 41-year-old was previously Lady Bruce, after marrying a descendent of Robert the Bruce, in the early 1990s.
Alaskan-born Grimes became one of the most widely sought after con artists after leaving a trail of scams around Europe and the US after she divorced husband Lord Charles Bruce in 1996.
In a behind bars interview with the Austin American Statesman newspaper she revealed that she has been “spending several hours a day writing”, and claims to have even sold the script for a romantic comedy.
Grimes now plans to visit her teenage children Antonia, 18, James, 17, and George, 15, who live in Scotland.
She said: “I’ll be out in time to spend summer with my children – I’m just ready to put this behind me.
“As hard as it is being in jail, it’s not really that hard – I probably wouldn’t trade it.
“I have a certain perspective on a different society and I’m making the most of it without question.”
The American Statesman describes Grimes as “blonde and attractive”, wearing a white prison jumpsuit, and having a “pleasant smile that cab invite friendship.”
However the reporter adds that “some of what she says can raise doubts”.
Grimes originally married Lord Charles Bruce after a six-week holiday romance when she visited Scotland in 1990.
£3,000 Chanel dresses
Lady Bruce, as she became known, enjoyed the luxuries of an aristocratic lifestyle for six years, living at the 18th-century Abbey House in Fife and wearing £3,000 Chanel dresses.
Speaking from prison, she said: “It was exciting, and we would live it up.
“I wasn’t infatuated with the lifestyle, but I love my life.”
However she divorced Charles in 1996, after saying she was felt “very isolated” around his high-society friends and family.
She said: “It was kind of difficult for us to sustain a marriage.”
Following the divorce she set up a children’s clothes shop in Edinburgh called Topsy Turvy, before fleeing Scotland with of £130,000.
She claims that the person she bought the business from was responsible for her debts.
Grimes later used a photograph from a meeting on set of A Scanner Darkly of her posing with Woody Harrelson, Keanu Reeves and Robert Downey Jr to convince investors that she was a screenwriter.
She also became involved in an internet scam involving people looking to rent holiday homes in Hawaii that did not exist.
But the Austin Police Department are still receiving complaints from people alleging that she defrauded them over the years.
Detective Carl Satterlee, investigating the fraud cases, said: “She was really nice, she held herself in that certain way, as if she was still in Scotland and a Lady. She was very proper. She denied everything.
“You could see how people could be taken in by her – you could tell she has a very persuasive personality.
“But she didn’t care about what she was doing, about who she hurt, but she was very good at it.
“She was very much out for herself to make money.”
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