Built in 1935, Girl Pat was the property of the Marstrand Fishing Company of
In court in October 1936, charged with the theft of the vessel, Orsborne based his defence on a claim that the owners had instructed him to get rid of the ship as part of a scheme to obtain its insurance value. This was dismissed by the court. Years later, in his memoirs, Orsborne told a different, uncorroborated story: in absconding Girl Pat he had been carrying out a mission on behalf of British Naval Intelligence, connected with the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War in July 1936. After his release from prison, Orsborne took part in further maritime adventures and served in the navy in the Second World War. He died in 1957.
George Black Orsborne was born George Black on 4 July 1902, in the small north Scottish coastal town of
At 21 he passed his master's ticket examinations and took over his first command, a
On the evening of 18 June 1936 the British steamer Arakaka had spotted a small ship a few miles outside
With Girl Pat secured and under guard in
Meanwhile, Orsborne and his companions were widely hailed as heroes. The German newspaper Hamburger Fremdenblatt asked: "Is this not a bit of British tradition, to do the unconventional out of love for adventure, if great personal risks, audacity and romance are connected therewith?". A man from the town of
Once released by the police, Harris and Stephens returned immediately to