John Darwin has to be one of the most stupid people ever to attempt to fake his own death. Indeed, the fact he’s still alive is the only thing precluding his receiving a Darwin award for lifetime achievement.
In 2002, after trouble with debt, his canoe was found empty, floating in the sea off Hartlepool. He was declared dead by a coroner in 2003, and his wife received his life-insurance payout. £25,000 and the paying off of their £130,000 mortgage.