Insurance salesman. Farm hand. Bay Street elite. Writer. Grandfather. International criminal.
A.E. Dawson was all these things--and more.
Part family memoir, part criminal history and part adventure story, Swindler journeys from the bucolic English countryside to Toronto’s high society and a fetid Mexican jail. All the while it asks: what leads a decent man to crime?
Leslie Dawson knew her grandfather had run afoul of the law, but it wasn’t until she researched deep family secrets that she learned the true extent of his crimes. A.E. Dawson was one of the first Canadians to be convicted both in the United States and Canada of stock fraud on a grand scale. This type of fraud was so prominent in Toronto during the mid-twentieth century that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission dubbed it "The Canadian Problem."
Swindler tells the story of how a cultured, accomplished man got caught up in the great Canadian pastime of mining stock fraud. Leslie Dawson weaves together her personal journey of discovery with well-researched historical context. She includes passages written by A.E. Dawson himself in this touching portrait of a talented yet much-flawed man.