Howard Walters and his mistress, Janice Atkins, plan to rob Wade Taylor's company, blame his son, and fake Walters' death. Janice schemes with Roger Porter to double-cross Howard. Plans go amiss and the son's wife is charged with murder.
Howard Walters has what he thinks is the perfect plan to steal from his employer Wade Taylor and run off with his mistress, Janice Atkins. While flying his small private airplane on a business trip he will parachute to safety allowing the airplane to crash. After he has left, Janice takes $130,000 from the company safe and the plan is to meet at a remote cabin before setting off on their new life. Things start to go wrong when Walters breaks his leg on landing and finds himself stranded with a hermit of sorts, Zack Davis, and snowed in for nearly two months. By the time he gets back to Los Angeles, everyone had pretty much given up hope of him ever being found. That's okay with Janice who has been carrying on with Roger Porter, who works at the same company as Walters. The police eventually find the crash site and recover a body, that of the missing Andrew Taylor, Wade Taylor's ne'er-do-well son who everyone had assumed had taken the missing money. Andrew's wife Carol seeks Perry ... Written by
There are two murders in this Perry Mason mystery. The first is no mystery as Simon Oakland shoots the son of his employer and then private pilot Oakland fakes a plane crash with the son's body in it. All to cover the theft of 300 hundred grand from his employer.
But two things go radically wrong. First the body doesn't burn up and there's enough forensic evidence to show the burned body of the kid isn't Oakland and that he was killed in a shooting. Secondly Oakland breaks his leg on impact from his parachute landing and is forced to winter it with prospector/hermit James Bell. His absence forces his mistress accomplice Patricia Barry to make arrangements with another of the firm's employees Ed Kemmer. Just a whole lot of double crossing going on.
When Oakland turns up dead it's the widow of the man he killed Rebecca Welles who winds up the one charged. Raymond Burr defends her and comes up with a perpetrator who decided to get a piece of the action, maybe all the action.
Nicely turned and twisted plot.
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