Archer changes the script to prove he's guilty

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The Independent Online

Lord Archer, awaiting trial for perjury and perverting the course of justice, has rewritten the play in which he is currently starring, so he can be found guilty more often.

Lord Archer, awaiting trial for perjury and perverting the course of justice, has rewritten the play in which he is currently starring, so he can be found guilty more often.

The disgraced peer is apparently dismayed that his current "jury", the blue-rinsed audience of the Theatre Royal, Windsor, has so far refused to believe that his stage alter-ego could possibly do wrong. Since the play opened on Tuesday, all four audiences have found him resoundingly not guilty.

But yesterday a spokesman for Lord Archer announced that the peer is so concerned for justice he has strengthened the case for the prosecution, "to balance things out a bit".

Hours before his first performance, the peer was charged over claims he asked a witness to lie for him in his 1987 libel trial. The charges included two counts of perjury and two counts of perverting the course of justice. He is due to appear in court on Tuesday.

In the play, a cardiologist Patrick Sherwood, played by Lord Archer, is accused of poisoning his wife. The audience uses electronic keypads to log a verdict, and decide how the play should end. Lord Archer is hoping the rewrite will at last give him a chance to act out the "guilty" ending.

Of course, the results could be down to Lord Archer's performance, or perhaps the political leanings of Windsor audiences. A spokesman for the theatre admitted: "It'll be interesting to see what happens when it moves." The next stop is Manchester.

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