Agatha Christie Wiki

In the Miss Marple short story Ingots of Gold, John Newman is a friend of Raymond West.

Newman was said to be an authority on Elizabethan times. He became interested in finding the wreck of a Spanish galleon, the Juan Fernandez, said to have sunk off the Cornish coast. The wreck was said to have a load of treasure on board. For this project, Newman had rented a house "Pol House" at Polperran in Cornwall.

It later turned out that Newman was a robber and had operated under various assumed names. The project to salve the Juan Fernandez was just a cover to steal bullion from the wreck of the Otranto, a modern ship which had run aground on the rocks off the Cornish coast and which was known to carry gold ingots in its hold. Scotland Yard later arrested Newman, not for the theft of the Otranto gold, but for the rifling of a strongroom of a London bank. Pol House was then searched and much of the stolen gold was found buried in the garden.

At the time that Raymond West narrated the story, Newman was already serving a sentence at Dartmoor Prison.


Newman is depicted in the anime show Crime of the Gold Ingots, NHK's adaptation of Ingots of Gold. The portrayal is faithful to the original except that we are shown Inspector Badgworth arresting Newman and his supposed gardener at the end. The charater of Newman was voiced by Isao Sasaki.