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- "The pirates themselves have often told me that if they had not been supported by the traders, bringing them ammunition and provisions according to their demands, they could never have become so formidable, nor arrived at the degree of strength that they have."
- ―Richard Thompson[src]
Richard Thompson was the Deputy Governor of Harbour Island in the Bahamas and one of the wealthiest merchants of the West Indies due to his trading in legal and illegal goods with New England. He was also the father-in-law of the pirate John Cockram.
In March 1718, Charles Vane had gathered an army and intended to loot the island before the Royal Navy would. Vane marooned Thompson on a deserted islet, since the latter refused to tell where his gold was located.