Most of my story is my own to tell but my activities in China fell under the Official Secrets Act and it took me years of legal fighting to get ASIO to allow me to tell my story - the whole story. My ups - when I was living the life of James Bond - and my downs - when the CIA sent my business broke in a fit of pique. I learnt the hard way there are some organisations you just can't fight.
Part One - IRELAND
My story starts in Ireland, where, although I was a Protestant, what I really represented was a wish for peace. I was a member of the Royal Ulster Constabulary – the RUC. The RUC were not Catholic or Protestant. What we believed was that those who chose the violent route were the ones in the wrong, regardless of which side they were on. We were on the side of the law and we came from all walks of life. After being responsible for the arrest of a high ranked IRA bomb-maker, an occupational hazard when you work undercover for the RUC, I found myself on the IRA hit list and quickly moved my family to Australia.
Part Two - CHINA
From here my engineering skills stood me in great stead and I ended up becoming involved in trade with China when they were first opening up and I hosted the first Chinese Trade Delegation to Australia. What seemed like a huge opportunity became my worst nightmare. From working with the Chinese to manufacture mining equipment, I found myself embroiled in spy games. At first it seemed harmless, and I thought little of it, but somehow I wound up the main go-between China and an Australian arms manufacturer, and as a spy for ASIO and the Brits. I was eventually bankrupted by the CIA when I would not become a spy for them. This was the biggest heartbreak in my life – my business went broke, my investors lost huge sums of money, my family lost our home and I had to take the blame for it all. I had signed the Official Secrets Act way back in Northern Ireland and the spy agencies held me to it. It looked like my business had simply gone broke and I could not tell anyone the truth. This secret has eaten at me for many, many years. It was at this time that I lost my home and lost my wife, in spirit at least. Too many secrets and too much time away from home.
Part Three - MANILA
Yet even that could not hold me down. I became involved in foreign exchange in Manila to try to recover from some of my debts. It was reasonably lucrative and it looked like I could regain a position of financial security, even if my reputation in Australia was in tatters. Then I met the Sale brothers and I discovered firsthand how corruption really worked for the big players in the Marcos’ regime. Luckily (or unluckily) I was operating right at the end of their time, and my fight for justice was eventually rewarded. I was found by the courts to be the legal owner of goods stolen from me. However , Murphy's Law kicked in. The Sale brothers, who with the support of a corrupt army had stolen my warehouse full of goods, had already sold them. It was a win on paper only, and again I lost my home to pay my debts. Yet this was against the backdrop of the ousting of Marcos and I was pleased to be part of the greater move in Manila away from corruption and towards a more equitable system.
Part Four - AUSTRALIA
I returned to Australia, having by now a new wife and a small son. Yet still peace and quiet were not to be mine. I live in the bush, almost in the middle of a national park. My nearest neighbour is a five minute drive away. Bushfires are not infrequent and at Christmas time in 2001, they were very bad. The NSW Premier was determined to find a scapegoat and Murphy's Law conspired against me yet again to deliver me to the Premier on a plate. I had to fight for my innocence yet again in court, facing libel that accused me of being an arsonist. Again I won, but too late for my reputation and with a heavy hit on my finances.
These are the stories I want people to hear. I want people to understand how I got in the messes that seemed to follow me around. Most of all I want to say I was caught up in a web of lies and I was cast as the scapegoat. Over and over I have proved myself, often in court, not to be the man people think I am