Disguised writing is any deliberate attempt to alter one’s handwriting characteristics to prevent recognition. Disguised writings throw several problems for document examiners when dealing with various disputed documents. The handwriting characteristics are subdued in the subconscious mind of an individual thus, cannot be altered or disguised easily. The present write up is to unfold the journey of FDE, examining writings or signatures having wilful modification for the purpose of concealing his/her identity. In this case, a person attempts to disguise his signatures on agreement of sell with an intention of denying the signatures at a later stage.
Handwriting is an acquired skill and a neuro muscular task. Handwriting analysis is an essential forensic practice that facilitates the identity of a person. A questioned document examiner deals with various types of disputed documents for fixing authorship. The complexity arises for a Forensic Document Examiner (FDE) when dealing with disguised writings. A deliberate departure from normal handwriting habits is generally referred to as disguise. Here, in this case the person tries to modify his handwriting characteristics to conceal his identity by an attempt to change the appearance of his signatures that were executed freely so that he can point out a difference when later claims not to have made the signatures. The writer accomplished five signatures executed on same date on agreement of sell. The manner in which he attempts to disguise his signatures is also known as Auto forgery. It is a very common method of fraud to sign a document and to disclaim the signature. In such type of disguise/forgery the person tries to introduce differences but fail to incorporate as the individual handwriting characteristics are hard to change and hence could be identified by the examiner. There is common belief by the writer that such features cannot be identified and are not characteristic of their writer leads people to regard it as unnecessary [1-3] The willful modifications by the writer are sufficiently noticeable by the examiner and can be pointed out to come to definite conclusion while dealing with disguised writings/signatures. Such types of ploys are usually found on Agreements, Cheques, Confessions, Promissory Notes and Contracts etc.
In the following case of agreement of sell, the signatures are written with normal fluency and the individual handwriting characteristics are thus, examined and observed in detail for drawing the conclusion. The case demanded to examine the signatures thoroughly, the attention was given to each and everything encountering in between as the signatures were executed freely with normal fluency. The forger creating a simulation does his best to make the prominent focal points of the signature look like the corresponding features in a genuine signature The inspection revealed remarkable internal similarities to the genuine signature. Often, the forger creating simulation misses the interior subtleties of a signature, while auto-forger produces these smaller intricate details as these are subdued in his subconscious mind and are hard to change. Signatures executed freely demanded attention of the forensic document examiner to what is coming in between. It matters not how the deception took place but to locate where the smallest void could be possible by the forger. The forger creating a simulation does his best to make the prominent focal points of the signature look like the corresponding features in a genuine signature. The inspection revealed remarkable internal similarities to the genuine signature. Often, the forger creating simulation misses the interior subtleties of a signature, while auto-forger produces these smaller intricate details correctly.
III. FUTURE SCOPE
The study will be useful to study and analyze the cases of auto forgery, with intent to deny on later stage. More work could be carried out with larger number of specimens in order to observe the variations, individuality, and characteristic features in such cases.
According to the analysis it was observed that initial writing strokes, connecting strokes and the individual letter formation does not show significant divergences and are executed with normal fluency. The forger though tried to incorporate and substitute some of his individual features but failed. The specific letter formation and characteristic features of writings are observed at different places (Fig 2 & Fig.3). The purpose of the study was either to prove or disprove master disguised handwriting/ auto forgery was done by the same person by carefully examining individual characteristics found between the standard and disputed signatures. The individual who performs this type of forgery will concentrate mainly on slant, different letter form, letter size, speed alterations, upper and lower case extensions modification. The present study provided a significant finding for the analysis and examination of the disguised handwriting on the basis of initial strokes, connecting strokes and individual letter formation. There are various methods applied in the identification of disguised handwriting by a forensic document examiner. Apart from this our study proves that a careful examination of the initial and connecting strokes in between in the disputed and the standard signatures can lead to a positive author identification of the forensic cases up to a great extent. However, natural variations in handwriting can still be a limiting factor, which required further research on such cases.
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