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The Millionaire 'Major Fraud' Screening

Guest MillionLiraMan

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Guest MillionLiraMan

Did anyone else watch it? I thought it was really entertaining to watch. I used to watch Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? as much as I could when it first came out, but then I went off it as the novelty factor waned. However, I was really looking forward to tonight's shows (they screened the show without analysis on ITV2 after the main show), and it was really enthralling after all this time to get the chance to see what happened.


Didn't anyone else get the impression that maybe the whole thing was Diana Ingram's idea? She turns up on the show first, then the brother-in-law, then her husband. He seemed genuinely pleased when he won and got carried away during the show, seeming more genuine and naïve about going through with the scam, whereas she looked really cheesed off at him after 250,000 and looked like she was ready to give him the rollocking that by all accounts after the show he went on to receive for going too far with it.


Looking back now it seems obvious, and it would have been I suppose to the show's crew, but I wish that we could have seen the show without analysis without highlighting his wife's reactions or amplifying the coughing, just as a normal show. I would have been suspicious I think, but I wouldn't have figured out how it was done for definite, without the analysis of the main show. Saying that, they couldn't really have thought that they would get away with it when they went all the way. I think that was reflected in the Major's reaction to being told that he wouldn't receive the money when he was phoned after the show to be told of what was happening. It wasn't really credible in the way that Charles Ingram simply knew none of the answers, had they done it with someone with more knowledge then they could have had a case for defending themselves, but given what was on the show and all of the evidence I fail to see how they could appeal against the Court rulings, and can count themselves lucky not to have been sent to prison.

Edited by MillionLiraMan
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I watched it too, and totally agree with what you said. It was quite obvious when you see all that other stuff they showed. Charles didnt seem to be that clever, I bet it was Diana who wanted him to do it. She seemed well pissed when he carried on. She even helped him with the Craig David question too :)


Also the way he changed his answers...when he was sure it was one...but ended up going for a different one because of the coughing.


I cant see how they can appeal after the show, it seems so obvious they cheated.

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Guest MillionLiraMan

The worst thing is, the Craig David question wasn't even the most obvious answer where they cheated! The way they handled the Baron Haussman question just blew away any cover they may have had, when Charles Ingram forgot himself and didn't give enough time for the coughing because he was so convinced that the answer was Berlin, leaving poor old Whittock to cough and then dodgily cough out 'no' as clear as a bell. The way he went for Craig David 'because 80% of his guesses are wrong' after he admitted he hadn't heard of him and was going for A1 all the way, then the Berlin to Paris change, then going for googol for a million because he hadn't heard of it couldn't have left much doubt that he was 'at it', as one of the other contestant's sons was supposed to have remarked.


If they do go on to make a film of it I would like to see it, they did something similar with 'Quiz Show' a few years back and that was OK, so I'd probably quite enjoy seeing what could be done with it.

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Guest The Crippler
I was watching the news this afternoon and it was advertising the show so I thought to myself I'd better watch that, it looks interesting. Half 8 comes and I tell myself to remember at 9 o'clock that that programme is on and what happens at 9 o'clock? Yep thats right, I forget about it. I was really looking forward to watching it as well.
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If you listened to what they were saying during the show Nic they said they had isolated Teclan Wittocks mic for the purposes of the show so you could hear when he was coughing. Although normally you wouldnt be able to hear him if you were just watching the program he was only 10 feet away from Ingram so he would have clearly heard evey cough.


Did anyone else think Diana Ingram had a really evil look about her? especially when she kept glancing down at Wittock? :P


MLM is right that Berlin question really did give him away as well.


" Its Berlin, its has to be Berlin im positive the only one it can be is Berlin. Im sure its not Paris *cough* oh but it could be Paris *cough*, oh yes its definatly Paris. Paris is my final answer"


Really does make you wonder how they ever thought they could get away with it as practically the whole production staff noticed something dodgy was going on and even another one of the fastest finger contestants spotted it.


On the ITV news after the show they actually showed Wittock and he was STILL denying that they cheated which i find quite amazing!

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Guest Feenix

I found it all quite funny. Especially with the Berlin question. You can year Whittock cough then half a second later he says no. Couldn't even desguise it properly.

It was so obvious they cheated. They should have bailed out at £64,000. That way they might not have got caught. I think if they had planned it better they could have got away with it. But it was just so obvious with the way they went around it, saying each answer out waiting for a cough, him going for an answer then changing his mind. Still, it was quite funny :D

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From BBC News:


Millionaire scam to become film


Major Ingram reached the jackpot with the help of coded coughs

The story of the Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? cheat scandal is to be turned into a film. The programme's makers revealed the plan at the end of Monday's documentary about the furore, which drew more than 15 million viewers, according to unofficial estimates.


Major Charles Ingram, who was convicted of cheating his way to the jackpot with the help of coded coughs, accused the documentary of being "an incredibly one-sided affair".


He told BBC One's Breakfast programme that the quiz show's makers were "greedy" and were making millions of pounds out of the scandal.


The ITV1 documentary was seen by an estimated 15.1 million people - one million more than watched the controversial exposé of Michael Jackson in February.


At the end of Monday's programme, it was revealed that the head of Millionaire's production company Celador, Paul Smith, hoped to turn the story into a blockbuster film.


Catherine Zeta Jones and Hugh Grant have already been mentioned by the press as possible stars.


Along with former college lecturer Tecwen Whittock, the Ingrams were convicted of conspiracy to cheat the programme out of £1m at the start of April.


Major Ingram revealed the couple are now £460,000 in debt after their legal battle.


They protested their innocence and said the verdict had ruined their lives in a series of BBC interviews.


"What the viewers saw last night was one of the greatest TV editing con tricks," Major Ingram told Breakfast.


He said the guilty verdict was "extremely humiliating" and had been "cataclysmic" for his family.


"The clips that were played last night were wholly unrepresentative of the environment that I was sitting within," he said.


"It is very, very unfair and it is worse, in fact, than what I had to sit through during the trial."


He also said the couple had asked to be interviewed for the documentary to make it "more even-handed" - but their request was refused.


"Celador will make millions and millions of pounds out of this," he added.


He also hit back at presenter Chris Tarrant's comments that the major was "nice but dim".


"I am not thick. I am a member of Mensa, for goodness sake," he said.


"That was a very, very unfair comment and it is representative of what Celador has done. These people are the greedy people, not us."


Major Ingram was shown in the documentary answering questions to win the jackpot while Whittock was in the audience, indicating the correct answers with coughs.


Diana Ingram, seen looking anxiously in Whittock's direction, was found guilty of helping "set up" the scam.


The couple said lawyers were looking into whether they could appeal against the verdicts.


The Ingrams were sentenced to 18 months in jail suspended for two years.


Whittock received a 12-month sentence, also suspended for two years.


The couple were also fined £15,000 each and ordered to pay £10,000 costs.


Whittock was fined £10,000 with £7,500 costs.


The defence counsel argued Whittock had been suffering from hay fever and asthma.


Whittock has said he is also planning an appeal against the verdict.


ITV1's Millionaire: A Major Fraud, an edition of Tonight with Trevor McDonald, featured interviews with presenter Chris Tarrant, the show's producers and other contestants who suspected foul play.


On the documentary, Whittock's series of coughs could be heard, including one followed by the word "no" as Ingram was about to give the wrong answer.


On a number of occasions, Ingram changed his answers after coughs from Whittock persuaded him he was wrong.


Mrs Ingram could also be heard coughing on one question when her husband was asked who had a hit UK album called Born To Do It.



A member of Mensa? That surprised me :P

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Guest Jerichoholic
What I wanna know, is why Tecwen Whittock would wanna help them? Didnt he just meet them when they went to do the show or did he know them before that? It would have been good to have an interview with Ingram on the documentary to make it more even, cos it did seem a bit one sided. But it was obvious that they did cheat, the timing of the coughs was more than a coincidence.
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Guest Shane McMahon
Originally posted by Jerichoholic

What I wanna know, is why Tecwen Whittock would wanna help them? Didnt he just meet them when they went to do the show or did he know them before that? It would have been good to have an interview with Ingram on the documentary to make it more even, cos it did seem a bit one sided. But it was obvious that they did cheat, the timing of the coughs was more than a coincidence.



He was probably promised a cut of the winnings.

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Guest Dark Dodo
I too think it was Diane's idea, But I also believe that the coughing was enhanced. If ITV had shown the original episode first then we would of been able to judge for ourselves
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Guest Peter K
I am so surprised quite lots of people watch "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire" because I think the show is boring and rubbish really and didn't really see the point of making a film about the cheating team.
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