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Pierre Despereaux

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Pierre Despereaux
Art Thief
Gender: Male
Age: Unknown
Actor: Cary Elwes
Significant other(s): Valeria Crosley (formerly)
Hair color: Dirty blond
Eye color: Blue
Aliases: Greatest Thief That Ever Lived
Royston Cornwallace Staley
Status: Alive
First appearance: Extradition: British Columbia
Last appearance: Lock, Stock, Some Smoking Barrels and Burton Guster's Goblet of Fire
Pierre Despereaux, a.k.a Royston Cornwallis Staley, is an English, elegant, sophisticated, James Bondesque art thief. He is known for getting in and out of any place before anyone notices, usually taking several priceless art pieces with him. He has a flair for elaborate plans, elegance, and colorful vernacular. He manages to evade the police all over the world and as a result is wanted by Interpol. Despereaux heists worldwide which convinces Shawn that he is the "Greatest Thief That Ever Lived". He is portrayed by Cary Elwes.


Extradition: British ColumbiaEdit

Shawn discovers in "Extradition: British Columbia" that Desperaux never gets caught because owners in financial distress make it possible for him to steal the items so that they may collect the insurance money. Making what he does more insurance fraud than anything else.

Extradition II: The Actual Extradition PartEdit

In "Extradition II: The Actual Extradition Part" Shawn and Gus return to Vancouver on the request and tab of Despereaux just before he is to be extradited by Lassiter. Despereaux wants to prove he is the "Greatest Thief That Ever Lived" and escapes from prison to commit an elaborate art theft from the Canadian crown prosecutor's house. But after the job is done he is framed for the death of the crown prosecutor. Shawn eventually discovers it was Despereaux's girlfriend who set him up.

Indiana Shawn and the Temple of the Kinda Crappy, Rusty Old DaggerEdit

In "Indiana Shawn and the Temple of the Kinda Crappy, Rusty Old Dagger", a valuable shipment of artifacts is stolen from a museum. Shawn needs "professional" help in getting them back. So he calls in Pierre to help them catch the thief who stole the shipment. The thief was actually after a dagger that opens the door to a secret stash of paintings. Over the course of the investigation, Despereaux is forced to fake his own death in order to avoid prison. Then, along with Shawn and Gus, he uncovers the art, revealing many seemingly worthless paintings. He later steals one of these and removes the paint, revealing a Rembrandt underneath. He is now believed by the SBPD to be deceased, though we know this is false, finally making Pierre Despereaux the world class thief that both he and Shawn have always envisioned.

Lock, Stock, Some Smoking Barrels and Burton Guster's Goblet of FireEdit

In "Lock, Stock, Some Smoking Barrels and Burton Guster's Goblet of Fire", Dexpereaux calls Shawn and Gus to England, where he asks Shawn to pose as a getaway driver in a sting to stop a heist. Despereaux claims he is really Interpol agent Royston Staley, and that Despereaux has been his deep cover identity all along, but Gus is still skeptical. Shawn and Gus discover that the entire staff turned over recently at Interpol, so no one has known Staley for long, and no one has ever seen the alleged agent who hired him, so Shawn and Gus suspect that Staley is a fake and Despereaux is up to his old tricks. Their investigation shows that neither Royston Staley nor his mysterious Dutch superior seem to exist, and they are certain their suspicions were confirmed. When they are called to do the heist, the criminal crew picks up Despereaux as the final member of the crew, though he still claims to be undercover, but Shawn and Gus suspect he just wants the plunder for himself. Just before the heist begins, Shawn recieves a phone call with more information that makes it sound probable that Despereuax is actually Royston Staley as he claims to be, since Interpol would have erased his identity when he went undercover and Royston Staley did exist at one point until his identity was apparently erased by someone at a really high level, and so he feels wrong for having doubted him (and for getting one of the other agents in trouble). When they arrive and realize the heist has already gone down, Shawn and Gus are tied up by the other robbers, who plan to kill them to make it look like a heist gone bad. While they are tied up, they see Despereaux sneaking away with the jewels from the heist, and are convinced that he is an untrustworthy criminal once again. However, he returns and saves Shawn and Gus in dramatic fashion. Soon Interpol arrives, complete with the mysterious Dutch boss who no one but "Staley" has seen before. However, a royal was killed during the heist, so the Dutch man suspends "Staley", and Shawn and Gus watch as he clears his things out of his office (including the dagger from "Indiana Shawn and the Temple of  the Kinda Crappy, Rusty Old Dagger ", as "Staley" admits he didn't always color inside the lines), and they finally accept that he is truly Royston Staley, an undercover agent from Interpol.  However, later, Shawn and Gus go to a pub, where they see the man who was supposed to be "Staley"s superior on the streets as a beggar. Gus concludes that this means he had been a fake all along, and Despereaux had infiltrated Interpol, hiring the beggar to play his boss to strengthen his ruse. Shawn suggests that, to the contrary, the Dutch agent could merely be undercover as a begger in order to uncover some sort of crime ring and Despereaux's story could still be true. Gus replies that it's ridiculous, since beggars don't have crime rings. Shawn then suggests (in a way that is true for the viewer as well) that they can choose what to believe--whether Despereaux is really a master criminal who infiltrated Interpol, or whether he really was Staley the undercover agent, leaving the episode, and the man, with an ever-lingering air of mystery. 


  • In his last appearance it is revealed that he may or may not be a spy working with Interpol. 


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