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The History of an Underground World
An Introduction to the Thesis, Methodology and the Literature
by Marijuana Australiana

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Marijuana Australiana

The History of an Underground World
An Introduction to the Thesis, Methodology and the Literature

Part Three



Estimating the Cost of Drug Law Enforcement

In the first 25 years of the War on Drugs in Australia, from December 1975 to
December 2000, close to one-and-a-half million drug offences were prosecuted.
How much money was spent arresting and prosecuting these million plus drug

The first official report to cost the amount spent by Australian governments on
the war on drugs was the Cleeland Report, Drugs, Crime and Society, which
estimated that drug law enforcement costs (police, customs, prisons, courts) for
1987/88 at $123 million. Cleeland’s rudimentary costing of drug law enforcement
was put under the microscope by Robert E Marks in the chapter ‘Costs of the
Prohibitions’ in Drugs Policy: Fact, Fiction and the Future edited by Russell Fox
and Ian Mathews.

Marks estimated the cost of Drug Law Enforcement in 1988 as:
Table 6: Drug Law Enforcement costs 1987-88

Obviously, the cost of drug law enforcement varies with the number of drug
offences because each drug offence costs police, court and, often, prison time. In
1988 there were 49,070 drug offences and drug law enforcement costs, according to
Marks, were $319.6 million, i.e. the average drug law enforcement cost of each drug
offence was about $6,500 in 1988. Using the CPI index and this figure, we can
calculate an average drug law enforcement cost per drug offence for any year; and
by multiplying this figure by the number of drug offences we can estimate total drug
law enforcement costs for that year. Table 7 gives the results.


Table 7: Cost of Drug Law Enforcement by year

Year Drug Offences Cost/Offence Cost of Drug Law Enforcement

1973 6,705 $1600 $10 m
1982 31,947 $4275 $140 m
1984 52,025 $4750 $250 m
1988 49,070 $6500 $320 m
1991 3,508 $7500 $550 m
1998 8 5,000 $8500 $720 m

How accurate are these projections?

Our estimated cost of drug law enforcement for 1973 was $10 million and there
were 6,700 drug offences that year, ie cost per offence was $1600. In 1975 the
Cannabis Research Foundation’s Advisory Council, which included JJ McRoach,
calculated the cost of drug law enforcement in 1974 at $10 million, based on 7,300
offenders at an average cost of $1200 per offence for police and courts alone. Their
prison costs were worked out separately, calculated at $65 per day for each day of
prison. They did not include a cost for Prisons (capital) which is 13% of Marks’ total
cost. When we include prison costs, the Cannabis Research Foundation estimated
cost per offence was $1350; comparable to our figure if Prisons (capital) is

Going forward in time from 1988, the National Drug Strategy monograph The
social costs of drug abuse in Australia in 1988 and 1992 estimated the cost of drug
law enforcement in Australia for 1992 at $450 million. This is less than my
estimated $550 million, but not by too much. The comparison between Marks and
the NDS estimate of the cost of drug law enforcement is:8

Table 8: Drug Law Enforcement costs Marks V NDS

Finally, my estimate that the cost of drug law enforcement was $720 million in
1998 looks fairly approximate as well. Table 10 (below) shows that the total cost of
all law enforcement in Australia was about $6,000 million dollars in 1998/99. If
drug law enforcement spending was $720 million, this would mean that drug law


enforcement was 12% of total law enforcement spending, which again seems right
since Table 9 (below) shows that prisoners on drug offences represented 12.1 % of
total prison population in Australia in 1998.

The War on Drugs and the Rise of the Security State

During the War on Drugs years the character of the Australian state changed
from a Whitlam-style social welfare state to a Nixon-style security state. While
spending on welfare, education and health was cut, spending on police and prisons
rose. After the harsh new drug laws recommended by Williams came into effect in
the eighties, the last fifteen years of the twentieth century saw an unrivalled boom in
prison populations in Australia, demonstrated in Graph 4:
Graph 4: Prison Population Rates per 100,000 Population in Australia
The War on Drugs was the major cause of the burgeoning prison population. In
less than two decades, the number of prisoners in Australia on drug offences
increased from 688 in 1982 to 2150 in 2000 as Table 9 shows:


Table 9: No. of Prisoners in Australia on Drug Offences V Total Prison
Population in Australia by Year

Year No on Drug % of Total Total Prison

Offences Population Population
1982 688 7.79 8830
1983 683 7.55 9040
1986 1236 10.75 11497
1988 1351 10.96 12321
1989 1297 10 12964
1990 1301 9.1 14305
1991 1322 8.8 15021
1992 1447 9.3 15559
1993 1697 10.7 15866
1994 1948 11.5 16944
1995 1935 11.1 17428
1996 1874 10.3 18193
1997 1875 9.8 19128
1998 2409 12.1 19906
1999 1960 9.1 21538
2000 2150 9.9 21714 9

The percentage of prisoners on drug offences reached 10% of prison population
by 1986, and has hovered round that level for the last fifteen years, even though the
number of drug offenders in prison almost doubled in the same time. This is because
the total prison population in Australia also doubled over these years. Many of these
other offences were also ‘drug-related’ or ‘Prohibition-related’.

Drug-related crime is a somewhat fuzzy concept. In an editorial (June 14, 2001),
The Age suggested that two thirds of robberies and residential burglaries were drugrelated
and even that two thirds of prisoners in Australia were there for drug-related
crimes.10 This might be true if alcohol is counted as a ‘drug’. However, by drug
offences we mean ‘illicit’ drug offences. If two thirds of robberies and break-andenters
(which together account for approximately 25% of the prison population)
were illicit drug-related this would mean that around 25% of prisoners were there as
a consequence of drug offences and illicit drug-related crime, not two thirds as The
Age suggested in its editorial. While a good part of the increase in prison
populations was caused by the harsh new drug laws recommended by Justice
Williams, which came into effect in the mid-eighties, the effects of other right-wing
law and order measures, including the mandatory sentencing laws in Western
Australia and the Northern Territory and the ‘truth in sentencing’ laws in other
states, also led to increases in the prison population.

If drug-related crime is estimated at 25% of all crime, then that suggests the cost
of drug-related law enforcement was $1.5 billion in 1998; if drug-related crime is 66


% of all crime that suggests the cost of drug-related law enforcement was $4 billion
in 1998.

One consequence of this doubling of the prison population was a prison building
boom in Australia in the last decade of the twentieth century, as the 100-year-old
prisons like Boggo Road, Adelaide Gaol and Pentridge, built in the previous century,
were replaced by a series of brand new US-style jails. For the prison industry, the
War on Drugs period created a once-in-a-century boom.

The growth of the prison sector, and the money spent on drug law enforcement
in Australia at the end of the twentieth century, can be seen from the following table:
Table 10: Government Expenditure on Justice (in 1998/99 dollars) 11

The prison industry averaged 7.1% annual growth rate over the five years,
becoming a billion-dollar industry in 1997. It continued to grow strongly, adding
another $80 million each year thereafter.

The money spent on police services increased greatly too, with an average
annual growth rate of 5.1% over the same five years. By 1999 Australia was
spending close to $4 billion on police services, and $6 billion on the total justice
system: about 10% of this went directly on drug law enforcement; while possibly
25% was drug-related.

The growth in police numbers in Australia in the period after 1973 is recorded in
the following table on police numbers.12

Table 11: Police numbers in Australia

Again, it was in the period after the Whitlam government, when conservative
parties in Australia adopted a US-style law and order approach that police numbers
increased most. These figures do not show the increase in ‘private police’ (security


guards and others). At the end of the century there were 94,676 private police —
twice as many as there were public police in Australia.13

Drug Law Enforcement as a Multiplier of the Black Market

Combining Table 3 with Table 7 gives us Table 12, the Combined Australian
Marijuana Industry, 1973-1998. Comparing the cost of law enforcement with the
value of the black market for any year shows how law enforcement acts as a subsidy
for the cannabis black market. Multiplying the cost of drug law enforcement by
about four to five gives a reasonably accurate estimate of the value of the marijuana

Table 12: Combined Australian Marijuana Industry, 1973-1998
Year Price/Oz Size of Market No. Smokers $Value of Market Cost Drug Laws

1973 $30 40 tonnes 500,000 $40m $10m
1977 $30 55 tonnes 675,000 drought $60m
1979 $50 60 tonnes 750,000 drought $100m
1982 $200 77 tonne 975,000 $550m $140m
1984 $300 94 tonnes 1,175,000 $1020m $250m
1988 $450 120 tonnes 1,500,000 $1,900m $320m
1991 $450 130 tonnes 1,625,00 $2,000m $550m
1998 $400 210 tonnes 2,700,000 $3,000m $720m

Between 1973 and 1998, every dollar spent on drug law enforcement in
Australia simply added another four dollars to the cannabis black market; with the
exception of 1988, when each dollar of drug law enforcement was worth six dollars
for the cannabis black market! The explanation for this curious phenomenon is that
the price of pot varies with the regime of prohibition, as we shall see. It also explains
why the regime of corruption increases with the regime of prohibition. All that is
achieved by increasing the amount spent on drug law enforcement is to increase the
value of the black market as a multiple of drug law enforcement.



Getting the Measure of Prohibition — Calculating the regime of prohibition

The extent of the intensified criminalisation of pot users with the launch of the War
on Drugs in 1976 is demonstrated in the burgeoning number of cannabis and drug
offences prosecuted in Australia over the decade 1973 to 1984.14

Table 13: Cannabis Of fences in Australia 1973- 1984

Year Cannabis Offences % increase all Drug Offences

1973/74 4,833 — 6,705
1974/75 7,176 48% 9,065
1975/76 13,008 81% 15,847
1976/77 15,689 20% 19,948
1977/78 17,977 15% 23,068
1978/79 14,249 -20% 19,948
1979/80 17,501 23% 22,871
1980/81 20,278 16% 24,515
1981/82 26,506 31% 31,947

Note that the War on Drugs was essentially a war on pot-users: the
overwhelming proportion of drug offences prosecuted were cannabis offences.
Cannabis offences themselves constituted about 80- 85% of all drug offences
prosecuted; of the remaining 15-20%, a large (but unknown) number of offences
were multiple-offence cases involving cannabis along with another drug. Other
cases, no doubt, involved pot users convicted for other drugs, not cannabis. On these
figures it seems likely then that about 90% of drug offence cases involved cannabis,
and even more involved pot users.

Only a part of the increase in offences was due to the increasing numbers using
illicit drugs. For example, the number of cannabis offences rose rapidly in Australia
after 1975, far more rapidly than the comparative increase in smokers. Between 1973
and 1977 the number of active smokers in Australia rose by 35% from 500,000 to
675,000, while in the same period cannabis offences rose from 4,833 to 17,977, an
increase of 270%. The year with the sharpest increase in cannabis offences was the
changeover year 1975-1976 between the Whitlam and the Fraser governments. At
the peak of the Great Drought, there was a small trough when cannabis offences
actually fell (simply because no one had any pot!) but offences returned to
correspondingly high levels following the Drought. Between 1973-74 and 1984-85,


the number of pot smokers increased from 500,000 to 1,175,000, a rise of 135%;
however, total drug offences rose from 6,702 in 1973-74 to 65,200 in 1984-1985, a
rise of 900%.

Measuring the Regime of Prohibition

Figures on the number of drug offences prosecuted in Australia have been kept each
year for the past fifty years and, as we have seen, we can use these drug offence
figures as an indicator of how hard governments are cracking down on drugs; i.e.
they provide us with a quantitative measure of the amount of the crackdown or of the
‘regime of prohibition’. They also reveal long-term patterns, ‘regimes of

Although the raw drug offences figures themselves provide a revealing measure,
an even better measure is provided by the drug offences per 100,000 population,
which allows the comparison of countries and states with different populations.
The purest measure of all, the regime of prohibition, is produced by a similar
formula, which involves calculating the number of drug offences per thousand drug
users. This allows us to compare states and countries over time, even when the
number of drug users has changed significantly.

The first year we can estimate the number of drug users in Australia is 1973; so
this is the first year we can calculate the regime of prohibition. As our first year, it
provides our standard unit: ‘the Whitlam’, which is the regime of prohibition during
the Whitlam year of 1973, which was 12.1 drug offences per thousand drug users.
By comparison, 1985, the year Operation Noah was launched, which was the high
point of the War on Drugs in Australia, had a regime of prohibition of 52.2 drug
offences per thousand users: this equates to 4.28 Whitlams.

To summarise: since the number of drug offences increases with both the number
of drug users and with the regime of prohibition (ie with the amount of government
repression), we can measure the regime of prohibition for any year by dividing the
number of drug offences by the number of illegal drug users in that year. This allows
the increasing regime of prohibition in the decades following 1973 to be measured in
a unit I call ‘Whitlams’, which is the offences per thousand drug users ratio for that
year compared with the same figure for the Whitlam year of 1973. By comparing the
changes in the regime of prohibition year-by-year we discover long-term patterns,
‘regimes of prohibition’.


Table 14: Regime of Prohibition as drug offences per thousand users and in Whitlams

Year Drug Offences No. Users Drug Offences/1000 users Reg. of Proh.

1974 6,705 550,000 12.19 1
1977 19,948 675,000 29.55 2.42
1979 19,948 750,000 26.6 2.18
1982 31,947 975,000 32.77 2.68
1984 52026 1,175,000 44.30 3.63
1985 65207 1,250,000 52.16 4.28
1988 49700 1,500,000 33.13 2.71
1991 73508 1,666,000 44.12 3.61
1996 98,794 2,000,000 49.39 4.05
1998 85,000 2,700,000 31.48 2.58

Regimes of Prohibition

Curiously, the regime of prohibition can be calculated in a number of ways: as drug
offences per drug user; drug law enforcement cost per smoker; or even via the price
of pot. Each measure gives a different set of answers, all in the same ballpark, and
all the indices agree. Between 1965 and 1999 there have been not one continuous
regime of prohibition, but two:

• From 1965 to 1975 — the years of the Vietnam conflict and the Whitlam
government with an approximate regime of prohibition of 12 drug offences per
thousand drug users (1 Whitlam);

• 1976 to 1998 — the War on Drugs years when government spending on drug
law enforcement increased enormously and a US-style War on Drugs policy was
imposed on Australia with an approximate regime of prohibition of 40 drug offences
per thousand drug users (3-4 Whitlams).

Drug Law Enforcement Cost and the Two Regimes of Prohibition
The regime of prohibition is best thought of as an indicator of ‘the heat on the
street’; it measures the amount of money and energy going into repressing each drug

An easy way of understanding the regime of prohibition is as the amount of drug
law enforcement money spent repressing each drug user. If we divide the cost for
drug law enforcement (in 1998 dollars) by the number of users for any year and
express the result as a ratio of the cost of drug law enforcement per user of the
Whitlam year of 1973, we get Table 15. Since the cost of drug law enforcement is
proportional to the number of offences, calculating the cost of drug law enforcement
per user is similar to calculating the offence per thousand users ratio, and provides a
similar answer.




Table 15: Regime of Prohibition as the Cost of Drug Law Enforcement per User
Year CPI Cost of Drug Laws No. Users Cost/User Reg. of Proh.
in 1998 $ in Whitlams

1973 23 $55m 500,000 $110 1
1982 60.9 $280m 975,000 $290 2.65
1984 67.8 $450m 1,175,000 $380 3.45
1988 92.6 $420m 1,500,000 $280 2.55
1998 121.3 $720m 2,700,000 $270 2.45

Again, our theory of two successive regimes of prohibition is confirmed by
these figures, showing the greatly increased resources devoted to the ‘War on Drugs’
(specifically the war on cannabis users) in Australia after 1976.

How Regime of Prohibition links Offences, Prices and Seizures
Although I am aware that the expression I am using, ‘regime of prohibition’ is
unusual and potentially confusing, I would like to stress that the underlying concepts
behind my argument are simple. I expect that when the government cracks down, the
number of drug offences will go up, the amount of drugs seized will go up, and that
the price will rise proportionally. Since the regime of prohibition is the way I
measure how hard governments crack down, these common-sense propositions
become, in my terms: price varies with the regime of prohibition; percentage seized
varies with the regime of prohibition; and, number of drug offences vary with the
regime of prohibition (by definition).

The price of pot, the number of offences, the seizure figures and the number of
users have been regularly measured since 1973. That they do vary with the regime of
prohibition will be tested and, as we shall see, the correlations are powerful.

At times, the synchronicity between regime of prohibition and these other
measures seems too perfect, the correlation almost mystical. However, there is
nothing mystical about the regime of prohibition. It is based on very real material
forces; the amount of police, customs, courts, prisons resources being spent on drug
law enforcement; and it is this real material energy which we measure in the regime
of prohibition.


One of my early fascinations was the relationship between the number of drug
offences prosecuted and the number of drug users, and one of my earliest doubleplotted
graphs was the bottom graph (Graph 5A), which traces the relationship
between drug users and drug offences. As this graph shows, the number of drug
offences does not increase uniformly with the number of illicit drug users. Instead it
varies with the number of users AND the regime of prohibition. Accordingly, I


realised it was possible to calculate the regime of prohibition as a ratio of drug
offences to drug users.

The top graph records the changing regime of prohibition between 1973 and
1998. It is graphic evidence for the theory of the two regimes of prohibition and the
change in the regime of prohibition in 1976. The two graphs are separated by a time
line of important events in this history.



The Price of Pot and the Regime of Prohibition
in the bluejean days
when acid was still legal
we used to sell shit for fourteen an
oz & everything was cool & the DS only had
three cops
now its thirty when you can
get it & the squad has thirty-two cops only we
call them pigs now & the heavies are getting all the
smokers busted so they can lay
smack on everyone
the perfect merchandise
customers for life
Michael Dransfield — Drug Poems (1972) 15

Over the past 25 years, Australian governments have spent approximately $11
billion on drug law enforcement with the supposed aim of reducing supply and,
thereby, reducing drug use. However, by attacking supply what they actually
achieved was to cause the price of pot to rise, greatly increasing the value of the
black market.

Because of the increasing regime of prohibition, the price of pot in Australia rose
sharply after the launch of the War on Drugs. Before 1977 the price of pot stayed at
a steady $30 per oz retail from 1970 to 1977. After the Great Drought the price of
pot rose rapidly to a peak of $450/oz in 1988, as the following historical survey of
marijuana prices in Australia shows.

The Era of the $30 Ounce

Michael Dransfield’s ‘bluejean days, when acid was still legal’ when the price of pot
was $14 an ounce, was probably 1966, the year of Martin Sharp’s The Addict. The
Report of the Government of Australia in the calendar year 1969 on the traffic in
opium and other dangerous drugs (published by Australian Customs) gives the
prices for cannabis in 1969 as:16


Sydney $20-$23 per oz (ex pedlar in bulk)
Melbourne $30 per oz (ex pedlar in bulk)


$50-$60 per oz (imported marihuana)
Brisbane $40 per oz
Sydney $30 per oz
Melbourne $60 per oz
Brisbane $100 per oz
The 1970 figures from the same source are: 17
Marijuana good quality $450-$600 per lb.
poor quality $300-$350 per lb.
peddlers street prices $15 -$35 per oz
Hashish $40-$60 per oz

Because of the falling regime of prohibition in the early seventies, the $30 ounce
became an institution that lasted a good seven years. In May 1977, The Australasian
Weed gave prices that reflected this stable price regime, though with a greater
variety of choice. The Weed’s market report was intended to be a regular feature of
this frequently banned publication. There was no sign of the drought to come in The
Weed’s market report for May 1977:

Domestic grass fair to good oz $25-30.
lb $160-300
Nepalese hash Temple balls oz $80 -120.
lb $900-1200
Indian hash garbage oz $70-80.
lb. $875 -975
Afghani hash excellent oz $100 -125.
lb. $1100 -1500 18

There was no sign either of the drought in the market report for July 1977 in the
renamed Australasian Seed, which reflected a buoyant marijuana market in both
Sydney and Melbourne:

GRASS $600-$700 per kilo or $300-$320 per lb.
$30 per metric ounce (25 grams). Abundant heads; some over-ripe, seedy, and
musty-only fair; some greener and sweeter smelling-excellent.

STICKS Buddha scarce. Jesus sticks less so-$6-$7 by the hundred, $10-$12
each retail. As usual, fluffier than the imported variety but can be surprisingly

HASH $1650-1700 per lb (hasn’t gone metric yet). $130-$150 per
ounce. Note: Very good Pakistani black around but extremely scarce.

GRASS Imported: Wholesale price has been falling recently. 200 lbs
of compressed Indian grass now available on Sydney market-kif quality. Approx.
$30 per ounce retail.

STICKS Buddha readily available. $12-15 per stick retail.


HASH Scarce. Approx $150 per ounce retail when available. Stocks
rumoured to be deliberately held back from market. Release of stock will
accompany hefty price hike.19

When Donald Mackay was murdered the era of the $30 ounce came to an end,
and pot almost disappeared from the street. As a result of the Drought, neither The
Australasian Need nor The Australasian Greed nor The Australasian Pleed carried
market reports in 1978. In January 1979, the yet-again renamed The Noxious Weed

The supply of cannabis to its users in this country has been so severely
curtailed over the last 18 months that weight ounces of grass are now $50 (if
you are tenacious enough to actually obtain it) and ounces of hashish are
rarer than truthful coppers. ... My own conspiracy theory is that our law
enforcement agencies are deliberately allowing and encouraging dope
smokers to become heroin addicts ...20

The Drought ended about 1980. In 1984 the Stock and Produce report, published
by NORML NEWS in Sydney, confirmed the higher pot prices that the War on Drugs
brought about:

Generally speaking, ... grass has ranged from around $70 an ounce for leaf to
around $300 an ounce for “Buddha” [compressed sinsemilla, reputedly from
Thailand, though rumoured to be from North Queensland] ... Hash has
remained in the $320 -$450 [an ounce] range for the fourth year in a row.21

By 1988 the Cleeland Report would place the price of pot at $450 an ounce, its
historic high point. In the decade since 1988, pot prices have varied considerably
around the country, reflecting the differing regimes of prohibition. For a decade, the
$450 ounce was almost as standard on the east coast as the $30 ounce had once been,
though after 1997 the price began to fall. By 1998, in South Australia, the lesser
prohibition with civil penalties model would see the price of pot fall to $150-$250 an
ounce; in Victoria (with its cautioning system for first offenders) the price of pot was
about $300 per ounce. The War on Drugs states of Queensland and New South
Wales had significantly higher prices, and an ounce of pot was $350 in Brisbane and
$400 in Sydney.

The Price of Pot and the Regime of Prohibition

Graph 6 and Table 16 test the theory that the price of pot varies with the regime of
prohibition and with the Consumer Price Index (CPI) — a measure of historical
price inflation for household goods. The first column is the historical price of pot.
The second column is the CPI index for that year; the third column is the adjusted
price per ounce using the CPI index; and the fourth column is the regime of
prohibition in $Whitlams, a new unit which is the ratio of the price of pot that year
compared to the price in the Whitlam year of 1973.


1977 1979 1981 1983 1985 1987 1989 1991 1993


1973 1975 1995


1997 1998


1973 1 $30 $158 1
1977 2.42 drought drought ---
1979 2.18 drought drought ---
1984 3.63 $300 $530 3.3
1988 2.71 $450 $590 3.7
1995 3.6 $450 $490 3.1
1998 3.2 $400 $400 2.5

Year Regime of price of CPIi adjust $Whitlams
Prohibition pot price of pot

Graph 6: Regime of Prohibition (in Whitlams) V Price of pot (in $Whitlams) 1973 —1998

Regime of Prohibition in Whitlams

Price of pot in $Whitlams


Table 16: Price of Pot v Regime of Prohibition
Year Price/oz CPI index adj. price Reg. of Prohib.
(Sydney) (All groups) 1998$ (in $Whitlams)

1973 $30 23.0 $158 1
1984 $300 67.8 $537 3.3
1988 $450 92.6 $589 3.45
1998 $400 121.3 $400 2.4

When the historic price of pot is adjusted for the CPI, it varies with the regime of
prohibition. As Graph 6 shows, the fit is even better than it looks on these figures
because price is conservative and lags behind the regime of prohibition. For
example, the $30 ounce lasted until 1977, even though the War on Drugs started in
1976. Similarly, while the high point for the price of pot was 1988, the high point
for the regime of prohibition was the period 1984-87, and the regime of prohibition
fell significantly in 1988 (because South Australia decriminalised in 1987 and
Queensland had the Fitzgerald Inquiry) as Table 17 shows. Our proposition was that
price would vary directly with the regime of prohibition. Instead, we observe an
approximate two-year time-delay between price and regime of prohibition.

Regime of prohibition leads, forcing price up in its wake. It is the constant
pressure of a regime of prohibition between 3.3 to 4 Whitlams from 1984 to 1987
that produced the record price of $450 an ounce in 1988, which is 3.7 times the CPI
adjusted value of the 1973 standard $30 ounce The declining regime of prohibition
after 1987 simply stabilised the price at $450 an ounce. After 1988, the real price of
pot fell relative to the CPI because of the declining regime of prohibition. A period
of stable price like the $450 ounce reflects a period of declining regime of

Of all the official figures, it is the recorded drug offences per 100,000 population
(table 17) which best reflect the changing regimes of prohibition in the various states
of Australia.23


Drug Offences per 100,000 Population in Australian states,1979-92

Table 17: Drug Offences Rate by State by Year (ending 30 June)
Year NSW Vic Qld WA SA TAS NT ACT Aust
1979 163.9 104.0 164.1 92.2 111.3 194.7 165.9 76.6 136.6
1980 182.5 90.1 201.1 109.1 245.2 261.3 111.9 45.8 159.6
1981 205.1 113.6 247.1 158.5 245.0 306.1 135.3 40.7 186.6
1982 263.5 155.6 315.4 143.8 262.1 384.1 121.6 65.9 231.9
1983 284.1 181.8 414.4 189.9 370.9 316.9 169.2 53.1 273.8
1984 342.8 185.9 517.2 260.1 504.7 404.0 278.5 64.9 333.5
1985 425.5 281.3 554.2 346.8 598.6 515.1 321.4 69.9 412.7
1986 379.5 309.2 523.4 435.6 476.1 383.0 279.1 119.8 393.1
1987 328.6 350.0 435.6 508.4 561.6 330.4 347.2 89.9 384.6
1988 310.8 204.3 344.5 487.3 177.8 383.8 349.3 90.0 301.0
1989 324.7 521.9 349.1 398.0 192.2 389.8 486.7 na 379.3
1990 325.6 340.6 365.4 545.8 214.7 424.8 399.2 na 355.3
1991 340.0 447.7 464.7 758.4 206.4 416.1 331.3 na 425.1

Although the drug offences per 100,000 population figures change with BOTH the
percentage of drug users in the population AND the regime of prohibition, on a yearby-
year basis they give a reliable measure of the changing regimes of prohibition in
Australia, and allow easy comparisons between states.

The Bjelke- Petersen government in Queensland was the powerhouse that drove
the regime of prohibition upwards in Australia in the eighties. In 1979 the drug
offences rate in New South Wales and Queensland were almost identical, but
Queensland rose rapidly. By 1984, the Queensland rate had trebled. It peaked in
1985, and was still high in 1986. This is the era of ‘Pig City’ in Brisbane, discussed
in the chapter ‘Regime of Corruption’. It represented a regime of prohibition
between 6 and 7 Whitlams that lasted three years. Both our social history and our
economic history agree that this was the high point of the War on Drugs in Australia.
Indicating that this crackdown was police-driven, it occurred before the passage of
the Drugs Misuse Act (1986).

As the figures show, the regime of prohibition varied from state to state in
accordance with the drug policies of the various governments. However, a similar
rapid rise in offences occurred in most states through the early eighties, with the
exception of Victoria. In the ACT, the levels of drug offences were historically many
times lower than in other states because of the ACT’s Whitlam-derived pot laws.

The South Australian figures tell an interesting story too, with a period of
repression after the recommendations of the Sackville Royal Commission for partial
decriminalisation, reaching Queensland-like levels when the corrupt Barry Moyse
was head of the Drug Squad. There was a noticable fall in Queensland (as a result of
the Fitzgerald Inquiry) and in South Australia (as a result of decriminalisation) in
1988, which produced the 1988 fall in the regime of prohibition and the high point in
the price of pot.



As the above discussion shows, economic history is a very different lens to the lens
of popular culture. The lens of popular culture is microscopic and shows our studied
world up close in vivid detail through the eyes of individual police, politicians and
cannabis users. By contrast, the lens of economic history is enormously reductive. It
is as though we were looking through a powerful telescope from a very distant
planet. Only the largest features of our observed world are discernible. Whole eras of
repression reduce to a small feature, to a column in a table, even to a figure — the
regime of prohibition.

As this chapter has shown, regime of prohibition is a measure of the heartbeat of
prohibition. When it goes up, offences go up (by definition), the cost of drug law
enforcement goes up (by definition), price goes up and the value of the black market
increases proportionally.

So far I have left one proposition untested: the idea that the percentage of the
market seized will also vary with the regime of prohibition.

Before I could examine this idea I had to build and test my historic model of the
Australian marijuana market and establish the regime of prohibition, two of the main
concerns of this chapter.

This proposition will be explored in the next chapter, when we put our market
model to its ultimate test: to see what light it can shed on the origins of the Great


Chapter 15

The Massive Pot Seizures of 1975-1978 and The Sydney Connection

To begin, let me confess to a modest heresy: I am skeptical about the police estimate
that Coleambally would produce 60 tonnes of pot. I estimate it would produce 31
tonnes. Now this is a minor quibble, and normally I use the police figure of 60
tonnes for Colembally. However, because we are looking at the seizure figures
closely, I will use both estimates in this section, for the sake of consistency.

Because the seizure figures are presented as a number of differing units, as
ounces of pot seized, as number of plants seized, and, in the case of plantations, as
acres seized, you need to develop a conversion table or ready reckoner which will
convert acres and plants into ounces to make sense of the seizure figures.

Because Coleambally was so big, I began to use it as the basis for developing my
ready reckoner. It produced the following conversion table:
One Coleambally acre = 12,097 plants = one tonne of pot (assuming each plant
produces three ounces of saleable pot) = 1 million 1 gram joints = 1 megajoint.2

The hardest question to answer was how much marketable marijuana to expect
from cannabis plants of this size. My estimate of how much marketable marijuana
you would produce from such a plant would be somewhere between 0 and 6 ounces,
suggesting an average of about 3 ounces. Now the NSW police gave a different
answer to this question. They claimed Coleambally would produce 60 tonnes of pot
or 6 ounces of pot per plant, which I consider high, though not impossible. However,
because of this disagreement, I use both the police estimate and my estimate of
Coleambally in this section.

The three ounces of saleable pot per plant only holds for plants the size of
Coleambally ie which occupy about one third of a square meter. Larger plants
produce more pot in proportion to their size ie the larger the plant, the more pot, but
the yield per square meter is similar (less plants per area, obviously). Hence, the
Coleambally acre is valued at a tonne, irrespective of the size of the plants.
What Caused the Drought?

My original intention was to show how the Great Drought developed at the time of
massive seizures as the result of simple market forces. The plan was to determine the


size of the Australian cannabis market, subtract the quantity seized, and the Great
Drought would be explained, or so I thought.

I also wanted to verify the regime of prohibition through the period of the Great
Drought. I believe that my formula for estimating the regime of prohibition
(offences/users), although normally reliable, undervalues the regime of prohibition
during periods of drought. Under normal market conditions, increasing the money
spent on drug law enforcement increases drug offences. However, during periods of
drought, drug offences fall, not because the police are going easy, but because the
high level of prohibition has succeeded in making drugs unobtainable, which is what
happened in Australia between 1977 and 1979. This attacted me to the idea of trying
to measure the regime of prohibition by a separate route, from the percentage of the
market seized, which I hoped might prove a more reliable measure of the regime of
prohibition during times of drought.

Instead, what I discovered was ‘The Sydney Connection’ — a massive distortion
in the Australian cannabis seizure figures in the period 1975-1978 caused by a trans-
Pacific drug smuggling ring. But I am getting ahead of the story; first, we need to
consider the seizure figures and how they relate to our model of the Australian
marijuana market.

There are two ways of estimating the size of the Australian marijuana market in
the seventies, the Green Mean method and the Seizure method. In 1973 the estimates
are ‘harmonious’, ie The Green Mean method predicted a market size of 40 tonnes in
1973 and the seizure figures for that year show that 3.3 tonnes of pot or 8% of the
estimated market was seized.

What happens when we apply the two methods to estimating the size of the
Australian cannabis market to the period 1975-1978, the era of massive seizures and
the Great Drought? We have two conflicting explanations for the origins of the Great
Drought: firstly, the police argument was that the Great Drought was caused by the
massive seizures of this period; secondly, the underground explanation was that the
Great Drought was caused by a heroin conspiracy.

What story will the seizure figures tell?

The Seizure Method and the Green Mean Model Compared

The equation central to the Seizure method aims to estimate the size of the cannabis
market from the amount of cannabis seized by police and customs: the assumption
being that the estimated market size will be 10 times the amount seized. In practice,
the Seizure method proves quite inexact because it has a theoretical weakness; it
assumes that the size of the market is the sole determinant of the amount of pot
seized. However, what also affects the amount seized is the regime of prohibition.


During government War on Drugs crackdowns, police and customs are well
resourced, there are more busts, and therefore we would expect that seizures would
also increase proportionally. In other words, while the police estimate that the size of
the cannabis market is equal to ten times the quantity of pot seized, I argue that the
correct formula should be:
Market size = seized quantity X10/regime of prohibition
This refinement meets the objections raised by Clements and Daryal that drug
seizures are a highly imperfect measure of consumption ‘because an intensification
of enforcement effort could lead to increased seizures even if consumption remained
unchanged’. This is almost identical to my criticism of the traditional seizure
equation, and it is answered by this refinement.

Because the regime of prohibition was 1 Whitlam in 1973, this new refinement of
the seizure equation does not alter our 1973 estimate. However, after the fall of the
Whitlam government, the number of drug offences prosecuted rose steeply from
1976 as a result of the War on Drugs crackdown. Consequently, I expect that the
amount of pot seized should increase proportionally, increasing the estimated market
size given by the Seizure method for this period. Table 18 gives the comparison
between market size estimated by both the Green Mean method and the Seizure
method, and also the percentage seized figure based on the seizure figures and the
Green Mean estimate.1

Table 18: The Size of the Australian Pot Market Estimated by the Seizure Method
Versus the Estimate from the Green Mean Model.

Year amount seized est. market size Green Mean est. %seized
1973 3.3 tonnes 33 tonnes 40 tonne 8%
1975(a) 35 tonnes 50 tonnes 45 -55 tonnes 70%
1975(b) 64 tonnes 640 tonnes 45 -55 tonnes 128%
1976 11 tonnes 110 tonnes 50 - 55 tonnes 20%
1977 26 tonnes 260 tonnes 55 tonnes 47%
1978 12 tonnes 120 tonnes 55 - 60 tonnes 22%

The reason 1975 is calculated twice is because we have two different values for
Coleambally; which is rated by me at 31 tonnes (see above), and estimated by the
NSW police to be 60 tonnes. Thus the lower 1975 seizure estimate is based on my
value for Coleambally; while the police estimate of 60 tonnes for Coleambally
accounts for the high estimate of 64 tonnes seized in 1975 or 128% of the market
seized; a good year for drug law enforcement, obviously!

As expected, the War on Drugs causes the Seizure method to overestimate the
size of the cannabis market wildly. Note that the amount of pot seized in 1975, even


using my lower estimate, was TEN times the amount seized in 1973, which results in
a ten times greater estimated market size. All of this was due to Coleambally, which
was NINE times the total amount of pot seized in 1973. However, 26 tonnes of
cannabis were seized in 1977, and the seizure figures all throughout the 1975-1978
period are massive (which explains the equally massive error in estimated market
size produced by the Seizure method). The estimates of the market size the Seizure
method gives for successive years oscillates wildly from 640 tonnes in 1975 to 110
tonnes in 1976! By contrast, the Green Mean model reflects a market demand
increasing with the number of smokers, rising steadily from 40 tonnes in 1973 to 60
tonnes in 1978.

However, the seizure figures do not correspond at all with the development of the
Great Drought; and the percentage-seized figures are unbelievably high, well in
excess of the regime of prohibition. My initial hypothesis was that the amount seized
would vary with the regime of prohibition. Table 18 (above) does not support this

The most curious fact is that Coleambally did not produce a drought in 1976. As
the cannabis market pages of the Australasian Seed and Australasian Weed show,
the Australian marijuana market was healthy right up to July 1977. Strangely, the
massive seizures of this period do not seem to have caused the Drought. The Great
Drought was caused by the murder of Donald Mackay, and the subsequent Royal
Commissions and police investigations which caused many major players to go on
long ‘holidays’; the smart ones overseas, the less fortunate at Her Majesty’s
pleasure. Coleambally should have produced a drought in Australia in 1976 — it
represents at least 60% of the total Australian market. It didn’t. Therefore,
Coleambally was not intended for the Australian market. QED.

Is Coleambally “too big” for the Australian Market?

Like Mt Everest in the Adelaide hills, Coleambally does not belong to our landscape.
It was far too huge, 25 times bigger than any plantation before it. No plantation since
has come anywhere near it in size. Even though the Australian marijuana market has
grown in size five times over the three decades since, Coleambally remains
unsurpassed as the biggest marijuana seizure in Australian history. It represented an
astonishing increase in production beyond any corresponding increase in the market
size or the number of pot smokers.

Indeed,the enormous size of the plantation at Coleambally was the clue that
should have unlocked the riddle of the murder of Donald Mackay. Thirty-one acres
of pot, 375,000 cannabis plants, an estimated 60 tonnes of marijuana: it was a large
clue to overlook. Whoever murdered Donald Mackay could move 60 tonnes of pot.


For those who understood the cannabis market this suggested a fascinating
inference: Coleambally was TOO BIG for the Australian marijuana market. It had to
belong to the only market in the world that could absorb so much cannabis — the US

A good indicator of the relative sizes of the cannabis markets in the U.S., the
U.K. and Australia can be gleamed from the seizure figures.

• In 1980 the trans-Caribbean cannabis trade between Colombia and the U.S.
was the biggest cannabis trade in the world. The largest seizure on this route at the
time was a boat with a cargo of 140 tonnes of pot on board. The Colombian trade
was so big that there were regular cannabis consignments the size of Coleambally
(and some more than twice as big) leaving for the U.S.

• Britain’s largest marijuana seizure in this period occurred in 1980, and it too
had a Colombian connection. Howard Marks aka Mr Nice was one of Britain’s
biggest cannabis dealers in the seventies, regularly moving one tonne shipments of
black Paki hash through his network. From US contacts, Marks was introduced to
the Colombian connection and he negotiated a small deal (by Colombian standards)
of 15 tonnes of Colombian green for his British network. Smuggled into Scotland,
Howard Marks’ monster flooded the British cannabis market in 1980. Marks found
that his dealers could push only one tonne a month, and he was forced to drop the
price from £310 per pound to £260. Because a smuggling operation is at its most
vulnerable after the cargo has arrived and is being sold on the street, floods not only
cause a drop in price and profit; as Howard Marks found out, if they go on too long,
they inevitably result in capture. When Marks’ operation was busted after six
months, Marks had moved only half the cargo.

• Australia had a similar ‘hash flood’ in 1981, due to the arrival of a four ton
hash shipment in Sydney that winter, which caused the price of hashish to fall from
around $400 per ounce to $190 per ounce. This ‘flood’ took several months to clear.
My estimate of the annual size of the Australian market in 1981 is 75 tonnes,
suggesting that even Sydney, the largest market in the country, could consume only
about 2 tonnes of cannabis per month, which is consistent with the effects of this
1981 flood.2

These examples show the relative sizes of the Australian, British and U.S.

markets, and why I and other experts believe Coleambally was destined for the U.S.
market. While a four tonne shipment was sufficient to flood the Sydney market in
1981, and a fifteen tonne shipment had an even greater flooding effect in the U.K. in
1980, the U.S. market was capable of absorbing shipments the size of Coleambally.
If a four tonne shipment flooded Sydney in 1981, how could anyone possibly hope


to move a 60 tonne crop in New South Wales in 1975, when the market was 50%

Another reason that suggests that the Coleambally plantation was intended for
export is that the seizure at Coleambally did not produce a drought in 1976. If
Woodward were right, and if the growers of Griffith were the major distributors and
suppliers of cannabis in New South Wales, then New South Wales should have
experienced its biggest marijuana drought in history after Coleambally was busted,
yet it didn’t. From the historical survey, we know that Sydney’s marijuana market
was healthy right up to July 1977. It was the murder of Donald Mackay that
produced the Drought, not the Coleambally raid. This was another indication that
Coleambally was not intended for the Australian market.

Judging from the size of the plantation, Coleambally was destined for the one
market that could absorb such a large quantity of cannabis, a market that was 25
times bigger than the Australian market — the U.S. market. Coleambally was not
simply the largest plantation ever discovered in Australia; even by world standards it
was huge. To distribute it would require a similarly large, global organisation. The
group who could move that amount of pot had to be major players in U.S. organised
crime. To find the murderers of Donald Mackay, we need only find an international
drug smuggling ring with Griffith connections.

The Export Theory

Government analysts who examined the cannabis seizure figures in the seventies
saw that the amount of cannabis being produced in Australia was far too large for the
Australian market. These members of the Narcotics Bureau and Commonwealth
police argued that the enormous cannabis seizures in Australia between 1975 and
1978 were too big for local needs, indicating that some of these crops were being
grown for export. This is the ‘export’ theory. It was this export theory that Bob
Bottom followed in his first investigation of the Mackay murder The Godfather in
Australia, and it is the export theory I support. Implicit in the export theory is the
conviction that, behind the mysteries of Griffith, its murders, its massive marijuana
fields, lies a U.S. solution. As Bottom observed in The Godfather in Australia:
A computer check, analysing the output from all known drug plantations
around Australia, has indicated to Federal investigators that Australia could
not have consumed all the marijuana produced and that some of it must have
been exported, probably to the United States. The shadow of American
connections is never far away whichever part of the drug trade you probe.3

Meet the Sydney Connection


My examination of the seizure figures revealed that there were not just one, but four
enormous cannabis seizures in Australia between 1975 and 1978 which were too big
for the Australian market. These four seizures were:
* Coleambally, 31 acres, busted 10 November 1975 — the biggest Australian
plantation of all time, estimated to produce 60 tonnes of pot;
* Euston in which 5 acres were seized along with evidence that another 9 acres
had been recently harvested, busted March 1977 — Australia’s second largest
plantation (before 1980) — the sister crop to Coleambally;
* Murray Riley’s total consignment of 4.5 tonnes of buddha sticks (12%THC!);
2.8 tonnes aboard the Anoa, busted June 1978, and 1.7 tonnes on the hulk at
Polkington Reef — the Australian import record until 1984;
* Bela Csidei’s 4 acres of ‘exotic’ US Mafia pot guaranteed to ‘blow your head
off’ in the Northern Territory, busted December 1977.

An examination of Murray Riley, Bela Csidei and their associates revealed that
they belonged to a closely related U.S./Australian drug network which, although it
was based in Sydney, was a global player and supplied the U.S. market as well as
Australia. The Australian principals of this network included Murray Riley, Frank
Nugan and Bela Csidei; the American principals were Jimmy Fratianno, Michael
Hand and Bernie Houghton. Because of their role as suppliers and transshipment
agents for the U.S. market, I refer to this group as ‘The Sydney Connection’. One
member of this network was Frank Nugan who was born in Griffith.

This version of the Sydney Connection (there have been others) came into
existence around about the time of the fall of Vietnam, and with the aid of a key
member of the CIA’s Eastern Division, Michael Hand. I suggest that the Sydney
Connection was caused by the CIA’s trans-Pacific drug trade moving south to
Sydney after the fall of Vietnam. It was this group which owned Coleambally and
consequently were responsible for the murder of Donald Mackay. They were the Mr
Bigs of the drug trade, they were allied with the Black Knights of the NSW police
force and knew they were ‘protected’.

Adjusted Seizure Figures and the Sydney Connection

When we subtract these four large drug hauls from the seizure figures of this period,
we end up with far more realistic seizure percentages.


Table 19: Adjusted Seizure Figures

Year Amt. Seized Corrected Seizures Green Mean est. %Seized
1973 3.3 tonnes 3.3 tonnes 40 tonnes 8%
1975 35 tonnes 4 tonnes 50-55 tonnes 8%
1976 11 tonnes 11 tonnes 50-55 tonnes 20%
1977 26 tonnes 17 tonnes 55 tonnes 30%
1978 12 tonnes 9 tonnes 55-60 tonnes 15%

(NB.Coleambally was subtracted from 1975; and Euston and Bela Csidei’s crop, 9 tonnes in total, were
subtracted from the 1977 estimate. Although the evidence about the Anoa and its cargo was confused, my
interpretation is that only 3 tonnes of Murray Riley’s monster were destined for overseas, so I only took 3
tonnes off the 1978 figure, not 4.5 tonnes).

It makes sense to remove these four large busts from the Australian market and
assign them to a new market (labelled ‘export’) because the evidence that they
belong to the U.S. market is substantial. When we do this, we have cracked the code
of the Australian cannabis trade at this time of massive seizures, revealing, beyond
the national cannabis trade, an international drug smuggling racket, centred on the
U.S. market.


Chapter 16

John Wesley Egan and the CIA’s Secret War

The pioneer of the SE Asia/Sydney/US drug route, the first Sydney Connection, was
a tall, handsome NSW Special Branch detective named John Wesley Egan. Educated
at Sydney Boy’s High School, Egan joined the police force as a cadet and later
became a detective with the Underwater Squad. He was a model cop, who was twice
recommended for bravery awards for his part in rescues at the Gap. His baby face
graced the Sydney afternoon papers; they called him a hero.

Egan’s involvement in heroin smuggling began after he joined the political
police, the Special Branch, and came via a CIA contact who recruited Egan as a drug
courier. The year was 1966 when Egan made the first trans-Pacific run from Hong
Kong to New York via Sydney, carrying two kilos of heroin hidden in a specially
made corset. Over the next months, Egan began making regular flights to New York,
taking periodic leave from his police job. Within four months his airfares with
Qantas amounted to $46,000 and, having exhausted all leave, he resigned from the
NSW police force and moved to New York.

From then on Egan hired other couriers to complete the chain — ‘clear skins’ like
himself, usually NSW police officers on leave — with the promise of $1,000-$2,000
for the seven-day run. Egan used the ‘shotgun technique’, booking three or more
couriers on the same flight, with a ‘supervisor’ riding along to make sure none
absconded. He kept 20 couriers in motion between Sydney and New York. Over a
six-month period in 1966-1967, Egan and his gang smuggled $22 million worth of
heroin into the USA, before a mistake by a courier led to Egan’s arrest.

Egan’s operation was huge, worth hundreds of million of dollars in today’s terms.
This remarkable narcotics ring, composed of NSW police officers led by a Special
Branch detective, became known as the ‘Corset Gang’. They were the first major
group ever arrested in the United States for smuggling Asian heroin into the US, the
pioneers of the Southeast Asia/Sydney/US route. Egan’s operation would leave the
NSW police well infected with the germs of the Sydney Connection.1

Egan accepted a deal and pleaded guilty, and spent only a few months in prison.
Released and deported back to Australia in 1972, Egan was the subject of a revealing
profile in The Bulletin. Egan told The Bulletin that the world’s heroin routes were


either protected by, or actively participated in, by the police forces of the countries
concerned. Egan said he operated under full protection in Hong Kong and a
percentage of the take was passed back along the graft channels. He described how
the trafficking of heroin from Hong Kong, the warehouse for the opium rich areas of
the Golden Triangle in Thailand, Burma and Laos, was often accomplished by either
ex-policeman, as in his case, or currently-serving officers who wanted to make a
quick fortune. Often working or ex-members of the US Central Intelligence Agency
were used as couriers because such men had an excellent knowledge of customs
procedures and rarely raised suspicion. Egan pointed out that almost all of the major
drug seizures in recent years had not been the result of diligent searches by customs
or the police, but rather had come from information given by informers.

Egan estimated that, in the last ten years, 50 % of the narcotics sold in New York
had been handled by serving members of the police force. He cited the scandal that
erupted when it was discovered that 70 % of the elite Special Squad of the New
York Narcotics Bureau were dealing in narcotics. The method of operation was that
the heroin would be confiscated from dealers and placed in the property clerk’s
office for later use as evidence. Police would then ‘siphon off the evidence’ and sell
it back to the dealers. Often the confiscated heroin was given as a bribe for
information that would lead to more busts and perpetuate the chain of corruption.2

Egan understood ‘the Joke’ because he was part of it. When he said the heroin
trade was ‘police protected’ he spoke with an insider’s knowledge. ‘I am not talking
of petty graft but of corruption in the highest echelons of police forces,’ said John
Wesley Egan. ‘Organised crime figures and highly placed policemen are often the
same people’.3

The CIA’s Secret War

As the story of John Wesley Egan and the Corset Gang shows, the CIA played a key
role in creating the Sydney Connection, and the agency would play an even larger
role in the second Sydney Connection.

The story of CIA involvement in the heroin trade was first told by American
historian Alfred McCoy in The Politics of Heroin in Southeast Asia. McCoy was
investigating the opium trade in Laos when he interviewed Colonel Maurice Belleux
of the French intelligence agency, Service de Documentation Exterieure et du
Contre-Espionage, the SDECE, who explained how his agency ran the opium trade
during the Indochina War to finance anti-Communist guerrillas. The Colonel then
surprised McCoy by adding that ‘your CIA’ took over the network. In the Laotian
villages, the locals told McCoy the same story; that their opium was bought by
Hmong soldiers and was flown out in US helicopters.4


McCoy traced US involvement with the opium trade back to the Second World
War. In 1959 this involvement intensified when the CIA co-ordinated a secret war in
Laos. The enemy was the communist Pathet Lao guerrillas; the U.S. proxy army was
the Hmong mercenary troops of the Laotian opium warlord Vang Pao. The CIA
funded this secret war through the heroin trade, exchanging drugs for guns, just as
they would later fund the Contras in Central America and the Mujaheddin rebels in
Afghanistan. McCoy warned that American involvement in the Laotian heroin trade
had gone far beyond coincidental complicity; embassies had consciously covered up
involvement by client governments; CIA contract airlines had carried opium, and
individual CIA men had abetted the heroin trade. As a result of direct and indirect
American involvement opium production had steadily increased, high-grade heroin
production was flourishing, and the Golden Triangle’s poppy fields had become
linked to global markets. The Golden Triangle produced 70% of the world’s illicit
opium and was capable of supplying the U.S. with unlimited quantities of heroin for
generations to come. Unless something was done to change America’s policies and
priorities in Southeast Asia, the drug crisis would deepen and the heroin plague
would continue to spread.

For Australia, McCoy’s warnings would prove prophetic.

McCoy suggested there was a ‘natural affinity’ between criminals and spies
because of their interest in the ‘clandestine arts’. Criminals gave spies a covert
network for political assassinations, smuggling, and intimidation while the criminals
gained protection for their rackets from these powerful allies, enabling them to
openly flaunt the laws. This natural affinity between US spies and criminals would
be demonstrated in Australia by the partnership of Murray Riley, an ex-detective
turned organised crime entrepreneur, and Michael Hand, a CIA contract agent who
had fought in the secret war in Laos.5


Chapter 17

Bernie Houghton and the R and R Years

The alliance between U.S. spies and Sydney criminals which developed into the
second Sydney Connection began during the R and R years in Sydney. ‘R and R’
was U.S. army slang for rest and recreation tours, a three to seven-day vacation from
the war in Vietnam and Laos for U.S. soldiers during their one-year Southeast Asian
tour of duty. R and R tours to Sydney began in 1967; by 1968 the Sydney Morning
Herald estimated that 1200 US soldiers on R and R leave were visiting Sydney each
month and predicted the number would reach 7500 per month.1

This huge influx of US soldiers contributed to the proliferation of illegal casinos,
and fuelled a boom in Kings Cross and in Sydney’s clubland. Thanks to the impetus
of the R and R tours, Sydney’s already flourishing vice trade cross-fertilised with US
crime and became world class. With the end of R and R, the boom in vice-land also
ended, and vice entrepreneurs from Sydney’s clubland, led by Murray Riley, moved
into the trans-Pacific drug trade. This move was facilitated by an Australian-
American network, which had strong contacts with the U.S. intelligence community
who met in Sydney in the R and R years — Bernie Houghton, Michael Hand and
Frank Nugan — the trio who would form the Nugan Hand Bank.

Bernie Houghton: The Texan Connection

In 1967, a fleshy Texan named Maurice Bernard Houghton came to Sydney, a month
before R and R began. Although the agreement to bring hundreds of thousands of
U.S. soldiers from the Vietnam War to Sydney for rest and recreation tours had not
been announced, Bernie Houghton seemed to know about it already. With references
from top U.S. generals and admirals, he approached Sir Paul Strasser, one of the
‘Hungarian Mafia’, who lent him the money to open the legendary
bar/restaurant/sleazehole, the Bourbon and Beefsteak restaurant in Sydney’s Kings
Cross. Besides the mandatory strip shows and girls, ‘your Texan host’ catered to his
homesick GI’s with dishes of Texas Chili, Sonofabitch Cowpoke Stew, American
Yankee Doodle Dandy Sandwich, and bottomless cups of coffee. With this formula
of sleaze and brash Americana, the Bourbon and Beefsteak became an enormous hit
when R and R began.


Houghton’s empire expanded during the R and R years to include Harpoon
Harry’s and the Texas Bar and Grill as well as the Beef and Bourbon Steakhouse, all
of them popular destinations for US military personnel. Within a few years, Bernie
Houghton was one of the kings of Kings Cross. Since the R and R boys were the
main source of marijuana and heroin in Australia between 1967-1972, his restaurants
were also major centres for drug dealing. Right from the start, Bernie Houghton was
at the centre of the Australian drug trade.

Prominent amongst the drug-dealing U.S. servicemen who frequented the Beef
and Bourbon Steakhouse were a group of CIA veterans who had worked for Air
America in the secret war in Laos, including Mike Hand, Kermit King and Joe
Judge. In Sydney they teamed up with a young lawyer named Frank Nugan. As Joe
Judge recalled:
Nugan for whatever reason was a trusted part of the Agency. We were told on
the highest authority to use him - he had connections at really top levels.
There was a lot of money around, money from drugs, from the blackmarket
and so on; one day millions might come in on Air America. You could take a
slice and ship it out the next day as your own.

Nugan could shift it for you. He could hide it, do magic tricks and make it
reappear somewhere else for you.2

Owning some of the hottest properties in Kings Cross, Houghton quickly
developed extremely good connections with Australian politicians like NSW Liberal
Premier, Sir Robert Askin, with Australian businessmen like the so-called Hungarian
Mafia (who financed him in the first place), and with other ‘adult entertainment’
entrepreneurs like Abe Saffron. Houghton was also very close to US intelligence and
military personnel, including two CIA station chiefs in Australia. Bernie Houghton
was a lot more than ‘the humble barkeep’ he appeared. He was accused of being a
covert U.S. agent, connected with Ed Wilson and the mysterious ‘second CIA’, US
Naval Task Force 157.

It was Houghton who arranged employment for Michael Hand when he first came
to Australia, and Houghton who introduced Frank Nugan to Michael Hand.
Houghton was instrumental in setting up the Nugan Hand Bank and he was a senior
partner in that bank. Again, it was Houghton who brought Admiral Yates and the
other senior US officers on to the board of Nugan Hand. According to the
Commonwealth-New South Wales Police Joint Task Force, Michael Hand looked up
to Houghton and Houghton was clearly his senior.3

Houghton’s high rank in the U.S. covert community was demonstrated when the
time came to flee Australia after the collapse of the Nugan Hand Bank. Michael
Hand left with another Green Beret. It was Tom Clines himself, Ted Shackley’s
long-time deputy, one of the most senior members of the CIA’s ‘dirty tricks’


division, who came out to Australia to rescue Bernie Houghton! They flew out of
Sydney together two days later in June 1980.4

The Corruption of the Askin Years

The R and R years co-incided with the premiership of Sir Robert Askin (1965-1975),
a premiership tainted by wide-spread corruption. In these years, largely due to R and
R, Sydney’s already flourishing vice trade became world class. Thousands of
American soldiers were serviced by a legion of prostitutes and Kings Cross boomed
as never before. Meanwhile, a network of lavish illegal casinos flourished, becoming
the gems in the city’s glittering nightlife. The baccarat schools ringing Kings Cross
were converted into a city-wide network of 14 luxury casinos like the Forbes Club,
the Telford Club and the Double Bay Bridge Club, which operated seven nights a
week. Although these clubs were illegal, they were never raided by the police, who
claimed to be unable to find them. The media and the public had no such problems.

The Forbes Club, which nestled directly opposite the ABC Williams Street studio,
was regularly photographed on TV shows like This Day Tonight and was known to
every taxi driver in Sydney.

While illegal gambling casinos proliferated openly, the government and police
took their bribes; knighthoods were bought, and a taint of corruption smothered
politics. In 1979, anti-corruption campaigner, John Hatton MLA, described the
Askin years:
Under the Askin government ... the real penetration of Australian crime by
overseas mobsters, gangsters and the mafia took place. The shopfront
gambling and rackets came of age ... I have no doubt that Askin and Police
Commissioner Hanson knew of and may have encouraged those activities.

One is prompted to ask, were they involved, and to what extent?5

The answer to this question, according to David Hickie, was that Askin was
intimately involved, one of those running the show. In The Prince and the Premier,
Hickie said that Askin and his Police Commissioners Allen and Hanson established
an arrangement under which thousands of dollars weekly in bribes and pay-offs were
handed over by the illegal gambling clubs for protection.

The second Sydney Connection began in this climate of high-level corruption,
and the ex-police and police, who became heavily involved in the Drug Joke after
the criminal takeover of the drug trade, began their corruption in the Askin years.

Not only were the detectives in Griffith corrupt, but many NSW detectives were
corrupt, and the corruption went all the way to the top. Rather than suppress the drug
trade, the corrupt police sought to control it, which effectively meant giving the drug
trade to their friends.


The successor to Police Commissioner Hanson was Merv Wood, Murray Riley’s
ex-sculling partner. The decision to promote to Police Commissioner a policeman so
closely connected with Murray Riley, recently exposed by the Moffitt Report as a
major organised crime figure, was either breathtakingly stupid or obviously corrupt.
The illegal casinos were closed during Wood’s term as Police Commissioner, but
this was largely due to the election of Neville Wran as NSW Premier, in part due to a
backlash over the perceived corruption of Askin and his cronies. Although some
members of Wran’s new administration were also corrupt, such as Prison Minister
Rex Jackson, others, like Attorney General Frank Walker, were cleanskins who tried
to clean up the state. It was Frank Walker who would bring down Frank Nugan and
the Sydney Connection.

For Australia’s first law-and-order politician, Bob Askin’s relationship with the
drug trade was surprisingly approximate. Askin regularly dined in a discreet back
room at Bernie Houghton’s Bourbon and Beefsteak Bar in Kings Cross. On his
retirement in 1975, Askin was given an office at 55 Macquarie Street, overlooking
Circular Quay, where his neighbours were the Nugan Hand Bank. In January 1978,
Mike Hand announced that Sir Robert Askin might be joining Nugan Hand as
chairman, though nothing seems to have come of this.



Chapter 18

The Second Sydney Connection

In 1975 the connections forged between Southeast Asia, Sydney and the USA during
the R and R years flowered into a reincarnation of John Wesley Egan’s Sydney
Connection. Around this time drug seizures in Australia increased massively. Many
of these seizures belonged to the USA/Southeast Asia drug trade which appears to
have been pushed south to Sydney after the fall of Vietnam. According to David
Deane-Spread, a former senior narcotics agent, Sydney became a favourite place for
shipping drugs bound for America at this time because a load of cargo marked as
coming from Australia aroused much less suspicion than one from Bangkok. Deane-
Spread pointed out:
The Americans combat the problems of trans-shipment to other ports by
having over 200 narcotic agents stationed around the world, mostly in South-
East Asia. They help local police raid heroin exporters and warn their
colleagues at home about shipments on their way. Australia has only one
narcotics officer in Asia - he is in Kuala Lumpur at the embassy.1

The details surrounding the birth of this second Sydney Connection are somewhat
sketchy. Unlike John Wesley Egan, the members of the second Sydney Connection
never confessed their conspiracy. Indeed, they perjured themselves in court, denying
they even knew each other. But the evidence indicates that another Sydney
Connection was formed sometime in 1975.

* In 1975, a U.S. mobster named Danny Stein, who had links to Jimmy
Fratianno and the San Francisco Mafia, visited Sydney to organise the importation of
drugs for the U.S. market. The idea, recycled from the Corset Gang, was to use
Sydney as a transshipment point for drugs between the Golden Triangle and the U.S.
west coast. Amongst the organised crime figures Danny Stein visited in Sydney was
ex-NSW detective Murray Riley.

* Later in 1975, Murray Riley met Frank Nugan. Present at that first meeting
were two former U.S. citizens, Harry Wainwright and Duke Countis, associates of
Jimmy Fratianno, whom the Joint Task Force believed were acting as Fratianno’s
agents. There are no records of what they discussed, but since what emerged from
this meeting was a drug-smuggling conspiracy, it seems likely that the establishment
of a new Sydney Connection was their object. In the following years, Murray Riley


emerged as a major trans-Pacific drug smuggler. Meanwhile Frank Nugan set up the
Nugan Hand Bank, and Harry Wainwright helped finance Riley’s drug activities via
his Nugan Hand account.

* The deposits in Wainwright’s Nugan Hand account usually coincided with a
known drug deal, but the first transaction in his Nugan Hand account has never been
explained: On 4 November 1975, Wainwright deposited $25,000 with Nugan Hand,
but this was returned on 11 November 1975. On 10 November 1975, an enormous
cannabis plantation of 31 acres was seized at Coleambally, south of Griffith. The
size of the Coleambally plantation suggested it was owned by an international drug
smuggling ring, which is precisely what Riley, Nugan and Wainwright were.

Coleambally was disproportionately huge — 25 times bigger than the previous
Australian record seizure, indicating that it was ordered for a market 25 times bigger.
This suggests that one purpose of Riley and Wainwright’s meeting with Frank
Nugan was to place an order for the San Francisco Mafia with Nugan’s Griffith
connections. At the very least, this deposit shows the beginning of the
Wainwright/Nugan/Riley association coincided with Coleambally.

This second incarnation of the Sydney Connection was in its heyday between
1975 and 1978: its rise and fall was responsible for the mega-features of the
Australian drug trade in this period: the criminal takeover of the drug scene, the
massive drug seizures, and the heroin plague. Conforming to John Wesley Egan’s
description of the top level of the drug trade as being composed of CIA agents and
ex-NSW detectives, it contained three US spies, Frank Nugan, Mike Hand and
Bernie Houghton, as well as an ex-NSW detective, Murray Riley. The size and
sophistication of its operation was on a scale unimaginable in Australia. It was a
creature of the US market, made in the USA and with substantial involvement by the
U.S. Mafia and U.S. spies.


Chapter 19

Michael Hand:

The Hero with the Heroin

Michael Jon Hand, the American hero who played a key role in narcoticising
Australia, was born in New York City in 1941, and enlisted in the United States
Special Forces (the Green Berets) in 1963. Michael Hand won a Silver Star, a Purple
Heart and the Distinguished Service Cross in Vietnam. He went on to become a
contract agent working for the CIA with the Hmong army in the secret war in Laos.
According to Andrew Lowe, his involvement in the heroin trade began there,
smuggling heroin home in the bodies of dead soldiers.

Hand came to Australia in 1968, making contact with Bernie Houghton who got
him a job with Sir Paul Strasser’s Parkes Corporation. It was through Houghton that
he met crooked lawyer Frank Nugan with whom he opened a number of companies
which would later became fronts for drug dealing, and would act as a ‘black bank’
for CIA activities. He was employed selling real estate at Ocean Shores in Northern
New South Wales; and there are allegations that Hand, together with an ex-Air
America pilot, Kermit ‘Buddy’ King, was involved smuggling drugs through Byron

There was much about our man of mystery Michael Hand— from his military
background, to the people he knew, to the way he disappeared— that suggested he
was a US spy. He was the kind of man that intelligence agencies like the CIA recruit
as their field operatives; an elite soldier, an ex-Green Beret, a man trained in
assassination, smuggling and leading guerrilla armies. While the romantic image of
the field operative was someone like James Bond, in the real world, the field
operative was someone with the career profile of Michael Hand. Such a career
normally included a time, shortly after recruitment, when the field operative went
under deep cover; becoming ‘a sleeper’, stealthily penetrating the designated target.
Hand was recruited for the CIA in Laos, and his early days in Australia were
‘sleeper’ years.

After this time of deep cover, agent Hand became active again. In 1975 he left
Australia and spent a year smuggling arms to US supported rebels in southern
Africa, working for Ed Wilson and US Naval Intelligence. Agents of the Eastern
Division of the CIA, run by Ted Shackley, were also involved in this shipment.


Hand occasionally returned to Australia, and there are allegations he helped forge
documents during the Loans Affair to discredit the Whitlam government.2

In March 1976, Hand returned to Australia to set up the Nugan Hand Bank, a
‘legitimate’ bank for black money, which he co-founded with Frank Nugan. Again,
it seems to have been Ed Wilson who arranged for Nugan Hand to get a banking
licence in the Cayman Islands.

To begin with, Murray Riley dealt with Frank Nugan, but with Hand’s return to
Australia, Hand took over the relationship with Riley. With Hand’s assistance,
Murray Riley’s trafficking moved from marijuana to Southeast Asian heroin. As
Michael Hand left behind his life of drug smuggling and gun running to re-emerge as
an international banker, his protege, Murray Riley, blossomed to become the king of
the trans-Pacific drug trade. The Nugan Hand/Murray Riley partnership was central
to the second Sydney Connection.

Shortly after the Nugan Hand Bank was incorporated on 23 August 1976, Hand
announced that he intended opening offices of the Nugan Hand Bank in Bangkok,
Chiang Mai and Phuket in Thailand. The Chiang Mai office would later be described
by its office director as a ‘laundry’ for the Hmong and other opium growers. Mr
Collins was sent from the Hong Kong office to Thailand, and Michael Hand took
over the Hong Kong branch of Nugan Hand in October 1976. Hand left Australia,
although he continued to visit at regular intervals, and he even became an Australian
citizen. Later on, he would claim that he was driven out of Australia by rising ‘anti-
Americanism’ ie the ALP’s witch-hunt for US spies following the events of 11
November 1975.

In August 1977, Hand left Hong Kong for Singapore, not surprisingly perhaps, at
a time when the Hong Kong authorities were cracking down on a large heroin
smuggling ring with ties to US intelligence (the Ma brothers syndicate which also
ran the largest Chinese language newspaper in Hong Kong). Until 1980, he ran the
international section of the Nugan Hand Bank from Singapore.3

In 1979 Michael Hand and Nugan Hand became key players in an ambitious
scheme to relocate the remnants of the Hmong army from Thailand to the Turk and
Caicos Islands, 90 kilometres off the coast of Cuba and right in the middle of the
Caribbean drug route. Hand claimed to be acting as a private citizen, yet he was
initiating an important strategic move for covert US interests. This scheme collapsed
following the death of Frank Nugan. After Nugan’s death, Michael Hand returned to
Sydney to destroy as much of the evidence about Nugan Hand as possible. He fled
Australia in June 1980 and, according to the authorities, he simply vanished.


Chapter 20

Murray Riley

The Prince of Scams

The man Nugan Hand helped become the king of the trans-Pacific smugglers,
Murray Stewart Riley, was an ex-NSW policeman who became one of the major
criminal entrepreneurs of Sydney.

Murray Riley joined the NSW Police in 1943 and rose to the rank of Detective
Sergeant (third class). A contemporary of John Wesley Egan, Riley was another of
the brightest stars of the NSW police, a sporting hero who won two gold rowing
medals at consecutive Commonwealth Games at Auckland 1950, and Vancouver
1954, partnering future NSW Police Commissioner, Merv Wood. The pair won
bronze in sculls at the 1956 Melbourne Olympic Games.

Like Egan, Riley’s fall began when he joined the CIB and fell under the influence
of Ray ‘Shotgun’ Kelly, the legendary detective and ‘Black Knight’ who, together
with Fred Krahe, organised ‘the Laugh’ (the NSW term for ‘the Joke’) of that era.

Almost two metres tall and broad shouldered, Kelly openly associated with criminals
and his network of informers was legendary. Kelly cleverly worked the press,
inviting them along to record his conquests, becoming a ‘hero’ in the process; a
glamorous role model for young detectives like Murray Riley. It was said that Kelly
used to quiz young policeman aspiring to join his squad: ‘Would you ‘load’ [verbal
or set-up] a criminal?’ If the reply was ‘Yes!’ Kelly gave his approval. If the answer
was ‘No!’ Kelly refused the trainee.

In 1954 violence flared between rival poker machine networks and Riley was
assigned to protect Ray Smith, a poker machine distributor and henchman of
standover man Lennie McPherson. As Riley’s association with Smith grew, he came
into conflict with a senior officer, and he was subject to disciplinary charges.

Resigning from the police in 1962, he became a sales manager for Raymond Smith’s
poker machine distribution company.

In his report on organised crime in Sydney, Justice Athol Moffitt noted the close
relationship between Riley, McPherson and Raymond Smith:
Riley has been in a close business relationship with Raymond Smith, dating
back to the fifties. He was apparently engaged with Riley in doubtful or
criminal conduct in the financing of poker machines. Smith had a long
standing association with McPherson, a man with a bad criminal record. 1


The man with the bad criminal record, Leonard Arthur ‘Lennie’ McPherson, was
one of the overlords of Sydney’s vice scene, a standover merchant often referred to
simply as ‘Mr Big’. During Riley’s career in clubland, McPherson visited clubs with
him, drumming up business for Riley’s entertainment company. McPherson’s
menacing presence made some club managers feel there were ‘implied threats’ if
they did not sign up. While McPherson played the role of the heavy, the ‘hard crim’,
Murray Riley was the ‘soft crim’, a likeable rogue who (in the words of a NSW
police report) ‘could not even be reputed to be a criminal’.

Riley’s first conviction for organised crime came in 1966 when he was arrested in
New Zealand for attempted to bribe a New Zealand police inspector to arrange the
release on bail of a group of Australians on a pyramid selling scam. For his trial, his
partner, Raymond Smith, wrote Riley a letter of good character. Unimpressed, the
judge sentenced Riley to a year in prison. Riley’s incarceration in New Zealand
meant that he was unavailable for Egan’s Corset Gang, though ‘the Prince of Scams’
no doubt heard about Egan’s operation.

Back in Sydney, Riley was hired by Walter Dean as poker machine supervisor at
South Sydney Junior Leagues Club. Working with Dean and William Charles
Garfield Sinclair (his future associate in Wings Travel), Riley became a major figure
in the multi-million dollar Sydney clubs market, providing poker machines and
entertainment. In the R and R boom years between 1968 and 1972, Riley worked
Sydney’s clubland for every scam he could think of.

The boom in poker machine gambling in the sixties had made Sydney’s league
clubs and others social clubs a lucrative target for organised crime. The boards of
clubs could be easily taken over, and a corrupt board could remain in office by
rigged elections, by rigged proxies, or even by miscounting votes. The cash from
poker machines in these captured clubs would be ‘skimmed’ by the gang. Those who
argued would be met with strong-arm tactics, of which there was some indication in
South Sydney Juniors.

Justice Athol Moffitt’s Royal Commission into Organised Crime in Clubs
investigated whether Riley was involved in organised crime through his interests in
the entertainment company Arcadia, and through three social clubs, South Sydney
Juniors, the Associated Motor Club and the Associated Mariner’s Club.

Riley was an executive and shareholder in Arcadia which ran the entertainment at
South Sydney Juniors as well as other clubs, and he held various positions at South
Sydney Juniors, including poker machine supervisor, which placed him in an ideal
position to skim the takings of the poker machines. He also employed ‘helpers’ to
assist with the poker machines whose wages were paid into Riley’s bank account.


Riley involved himself in industrial relations at South Sydney Juniors, attempting
to bribe a union official to get a ‘sweetheart’ deal so there would be no union
disputes. As Moffitt noted, ‘in all the clubs in which he operated Riley, a person
outside any club authority of office, arranged directorships and employments, and in
South Sydney Juniors, without office, usurped the position of industrial relations
officer and acted in the club’s affairs.’2

As well as bribing the union official, there was evidence Riley offered secret
commissions to club managers who bought his services, and he was involved in
assaults. However, the NSW police investigations into the allegations of organised
crime at South Sydney Juniors were negative, with the final report emphasising
instead the efficiency and success of the club. About Murray Riley, the police report
said that he ‘could not even be reputed to be a criminal’. Nonetheless, the
investigating police had advised witnesses against Riley not ‘to tangle’ with him.
Justice Moffitt, who believed Riley and his gang were engaged in the organised
plundering of clubs, was critical of the benign attitude to Riley taken in the police
report. He concluded that the police were ‘disinterested and dilatory ... because an
ex-police officer of some sporting fame was involved’.3

When Moffitt began his inquiry into club corruption in 1972, Riley went
underground to avoid having to give evidence. He was named several times as an
organised crime figure during that Commission, and both he and Raymond Smith
disappeared for the course of the Royal Commission. The day after Justice Moffitt
tabled his report, Riley reappeared in Sydney in spectacular fashion, driving his
flashy Buick Le Sabre, and threatening to smash the camera of a reporter who tried
to interview him.

In his report, Justice Moffitt was critical of the leniency of the NSW police
investigation into the organised crime activities of Riley, concluding that the NSW
police ‘treated Riley with undue favour’.4

Moffitt predicted ‘there was a very real danger that organised crime from
overseas will infiltrate this country’. He predicted that the arrival of US organised
crime would not be heralded by ‘armed gangsters in black shirts and white ties’; it
would arrive in ‘the Trojan horse of legitimate business, fashioned for concealment
and apparent respectability by the witting and unwitting aid of expert accountants,
lawyers and businessmen’.5

When this Trojan horse of organised crime arrived, it was called the Nugan Hand
Bank, and Murray Riley was its favoured customer.

Banned from the club business, on his return to Sydney Riley moved into drugs.
In 1975, Riley met Danny Stein and began working closely with a number of US
citizens, including Stein, Jimmy Fratianno and Harry Wainwright, to establish a


trans-Pacific drug network linking Southeast Asia, Sydney, and the United States.
Riley and Wainwright also met Frank Nugan in 1975. At first, Frank Nugan
managed the Nugan Hand relationship with Riley, but when Michael Hand returned
in March 1976, he took over the relationship. Perhaps not surprisingly, it was during
the period when he was close to Hand when Riley moved into Southeast Asian

The drug related activities of Murray Riley and the Nugan Hand group were
investigated by the Commonwealth-New South Wales Joint Task Force on Drug
Trafficking, which concluded that Riley organised five shipments of heroin into
Australia in April, June, August, September-October, and November-December
1976, mostly in false bottom suitcases. For each importation the facilities of the
Nugan Hand group of companies were used to transfer the purchase money from
Sydney to Hong Kong. Over one hundred pounds of heroin was involved, and much
of this was shipped on to the US. Riley was also involved in two heroin importations
in July and September 1977.

In December 1975, Riley resumed his association with William Charles Garfield
Sinclair, who founded Wings Travel. Sinclair provided Riley with an employee
discount on airline tickets and a letter of accreditation which enabled him to get 50%
off hotel rates. Riley operated a Pacific Rim circuit between Sydney, Hong Kong
and San Francisco. Over the next few years, Wings Travel was used by an extensive
network of drug couriers. According to Woodward Royal Commission counsel, Mr
Roger Gyles QC, ‘The manifest of Wings Travel reads like a who’s who of drug
traffickers’. The role of Riley, like the role of Egan, was to organise the trafficking,
allowing the CIA to stand at arms length from the drug trade, acting as the honest
broker, literally the drug trade’s ‘bank’.

As well as his flirtation with Nugan Hand and the CIA, Riley frequently visited
San Francisco with other members of the Sydney Connection, including Bela Csidei,
Duke Countis and Harry Wainwright. Csidei and Riley were photographed meeting
US Mafia bosses (including Jimmy Fratianno) in San Francisco, an ideal
transshipment port on the US west coast, completing the Southeast Asia/Sydney/US

Bob Bottom devoted a whole chapter of The Godfather in Australia to ‘The San
Francisco Connection’, which is his phrase for Jimmy Fratianno, his Teamsters’
Union companion, Rudy Tham, and Murray Riley and Bela Csidei. According to
Bottom, Riley and Csidei met regularly with Fratianno, sometimes twice a month,
over a period of two years. Bottom details the Mafia pedigree of Fratianno and
company whom he describes as the ‘deadliest clique of Mafia chieftains since the era


of Chicago’s Al Capone’. Noting these drug connections, Bottom speculated that
this group may have been involved in the Mackay murder.

If Mackay’s murder was organised by the national or international syndicates
that control much of Australia’s $225 million per year illicit drug trade, nobody
could have recommended a better source for a hit-man than Fratianno and his
American or Australian associates.6

The Ocker Nostra

The criminal takeover of the underground dealing network (when an organised gang
moved against the old hippie dealing network, demanding that grass-only dealers
sell heroin or get out) happened in late 1976 in Australia, a convenient time for
Murray Riley, who was bringing heroin into the country, and who had plans to enter
the pot market in a big way.

Arthur Stanley ‘Neddy’ Smith was a prominent member of the ‘Ocker Nostra’
that Murray Riley assembled for his venture into the drug trade. A street brawler
without equal, Smith was earning his living ‘the hard way’, by armed robberies and
as a standover man before he began his career in heroin in 1976 when he got a job as
a minder for Ken Derley, a big heroin dealer who worked for Murray Riley. Smith
rose swiftly to become the biggest heroin dealer in Australia by 1978, selling in 30
pound lots round the Double Bay area. As Neddy Smith recalled in his
autobiography Neddy: ‘I did millions of dollars of business with Murray.’7

The Double Bay Mob, those associates of Murray Riley who came to dominate
the drug trade in Sydney after the criminal takeover, were part of a criminal milieu, a
group of standover men and SP bookies and other organised crime figures who
drank together and socialised in the Double Bay area of Sydney. For the bookies,
settling day was Monday at The Royal Oak Hotel in Double Bay. Standover men
like Smith hung round to get business collecting debts while discussing other scams.

In this milieu, Murray Riley was ‘the Prince of Promises’, a compulsive scammer
who, as Neddy Smith remembered, ‘was always talking in telephone numbers’.
‘Murray kept coming up with scams worth plenty of money’ wrote Neddy Smith:
‘Not a lot of Murray’s scams amounted to anything — hence his nickname the
‘Prince of Promises’ — but when one came off, it produced huge earns for one and

As Smith discovered, the Prince of Promises could work scams on both sides of
the law. At their first meeting, Riley paid Smith $30,000 for his role in a drug run,
then offered to ‘fix a blue’ for Smith, who was facing charges of armed robbery and
attempted murder. For $20,000, Riley ensured that Neddy Smith left court a very
happy man.


In June 1977, Murray Riley made the first of several trips to Southeast Asia to
organise the greatest scam of his career, a massive importation of buddha sticks
destined for both the US and the Australian market. Using contacts in Hong Kong,
he struck a deal to buy five tonnes of this potent form of Thai cannabis. Riley then
travelled to Bangkok, where he made downpayments to plantation operators,
trucking companies and the Thai military for protection.

Back in Australia, Riley put together a gang of cronies from clubland who would
oversee various stages of the operation, from guarding the cargo en route to
supervising its distribution. Riley’s budget gives a good measure of the scale of the
operation: According to Jarratt, Riley expected to make $50 million from his share
of the cargo (another part belonged to a silent partner who was never revealed) and
he promised his gang members between $500,000 and $2 million each. This still left
Riley with $25 million, with which he planned to purchase a casino in Las Vegas!
On 30 March 1978, Riley’s boat, the Chorya Maru, left Bangkok, having picked
up two separate consignments of cannabis in Thailand, the first on the west coast
near Sathip and the second off Pataya. On board was a cargo estimated at five tonnes
of buddha sticks, destined, in part, for drought ravaged Australia. ‘The Big One’ was
on the way!

By this stage, Riley had invested $750,000 in the boat and its heavily guarded
cargo. Unfortunately for him, the voyage across the Pacific proved a series of
misfortunes and the condition of the Chorya Maru forced the crew to offload the
cargo in the hull of a wreck on Polkington Reef near Honiara in the Solomon
Islands. To avert disaster, Riley had to buy a second ship, the Anoa, in Cairns and
send it to the Solomons. At the reef, Riley’s men loaded every crevice of the boat
with about 2.6 tonnes of cannabis, leaving roughly the same amount in the hull.
Another 1.9 tonnes of cannabis would later be recovered from the wreck on
Polkingon Reef, bringing the total to 4.5 tonnes.

As ‘the Big One’ made its tortured way across the Pacific, its progress was being
monitored by no fewer than four law enforcement agencies, and a large police
operation followed the Anoa’s progress down the Australian coast. The ketch was
due to rendezvous at Bermagui, but heavy weather forced the Anoa to put in near
Coffs Harbour, where a team of drug squad detectives and federal police watched it
unload before they pounced on 10 June 1978.

According to Murray Riley, he was driving north to meet the cargo when he heard
news of the bust on the car radio, so he turned around and headed south. Neddy
Smith tells a different version with Riley reaching the Anoa and departing with $2
million worth of buddha sticks. Whatever the case, the NSW police quickly rounded
up all the conspirators except Riley, who slipped away.


Three weeks later an Adelaide police constable noticed something familiar about
the fit, middle-aged jogger he passed at Henley Beach. Riley was arrested in
Adelaide on 29 June 1978. The phone contacts in his address book included a
member of NSW parliament, the NSW Police Commissioner, several senior police
officers and other organised crime figures. One contact was Harry Ikin, a former
NSW policeman who was John Wesley Egan’s partner in the ‘Corset Gang’ racket,
though, given Egan, Ikin and Riley were all NSW detectives and contemporaries,
shared friendship is not unexpected.

There was substantial evidence that there were two different cannabis cargoes on
board the Chorya Maru, possibly arranged by independent, although co-operating,
groups. The Chorya Maru picked up two separate consignments of cannabis in
Thailand, the first on the west coast near Sathip (1.5 tonnes packed in 45 cartonnes)
and the second off Pataya (about 3-4 tonnes packed in 150 hessian sacks).
Consequently, there was much confusion about whether Riley owned all the
cannabis on board the Chorya Maru or whether he was merely ‘the transportation
agent’ for one-third of the cargo, as he claimed at his trial.

In various interviews, Murray Riley gave three different versions of who owned
the cargo. Just after he was arrested, Riley gave the police his first version of the
importation. He said that he was approached by a man in Bangkok with a drugsmuggling
proposition and he agreed to arrange a shipment of 1.5 tonnes of buddha
sticks to Australia. It was only when he reached Honiara that the skipper of the
Chorya Maru told Riley that the boat ‘had picked up another consignment of 4
tonnes from another part of Thailand on its way down to Australia’. According to
Riley this consignment ‘was for another party whom I did not know’. Riley said he
and his associates were to receive $500,000 for their services in shipping the 1.5
tonnes, which represents a mere 1% of the estimated $50 million value he would
later give the Chorya Maru’s cargo!9

In an interview with Woodward commission investigators in March 1979, Riley
gave his second version of the financing of the operation. Again Riley said he met a
man in Bangkok who had a contact for the supply of buddha sticks. Riley discussed
the matter with ‘some acquaintances’ in Sydney and it was decided they should pool
their resources and attempt an importation. Riley insisted that the whole of the
finance for the importation had been raised from those arrested in connection with
the Anoa, and there were no others involved.

In his evidence before the Woodward royal commission, Riley told a third version
of the importation, similar to his first version, but with some novel variations. The
man in Bangkok this time introduced Riley to an American named John Gilmore,
who contracted Riley and his associates to move the 1.5 tonnes of buddha sticks to


Sydney. Gilmore was to take delivery of the shipment in Sydney. Riley’s
renumeration was to be $500,000 but Gilmore did not give Riley an advance,
supposedly leaving Riley and his associates to pay out of their own pockets the
expenses involved in the venture. For the first time, Riley claimed that Gilmore told
him the shipment was not to be distributed in Australia. Riley presumed that it was
to be distributed in the United States. In this new version, the one he used in court,
Riley and friends ceased to be the principals of this enormous drug trafficking
operation and were now simply ‘agents’ for the principal, the mysterious American
John Gilmore.

Woodward confronted Riley with his earlier versions of the Anoa importation.
Riley admitted that these earlier statements were ‘not entirely’ true, but insisted they
were ‘close’. He said he lied because he did not want to involve others.

As well as Riley’s dubious testimony, Woodward also heard allegations involving
the financing of the Anoa venture, implicating two American citizens Harry
Wainwright and Danny Stein, using the facilities of the Nugan Hand Bank. Both
Wainwright and Stein had connections with the U.S. Mafia. According to the Joint
Police Task Force, Wainwright was also a major source of funds for Riley’s heroin

Riley’s constantly evolving versions of the financing of the Anoa importation
made Woodward’s task of pulling the threads of the conspiracy together very
difficult. Woodward concluded that the costs involved were beyond the unaided
financial resources of Riley and his group and he believed there was another
financier behind the shipment of the other 3.5 tonnes of cannabis who Riley and
associates were protecting.

Riley has originally said that the shipment was to be sold in Australia, but then
had changed his story and said that the consignment was to be sold on the American
market. Woodward rejected the Sydney Connection theory, though he was unusually
tentative in this judgement, conceding the possibility (which I hold) that ‘it may be
that the Australian sales were to be made out of the shipment of 1.5 tonnes for which
Riley was responsible and the shipment of 3.5 tonnes was to be distributed in

However his final conclusion on this question was:
I do not have any information which suggests that drugs are imported into
America from the East via Australia. On the contrary, it has been suggested
that drugs originating from the East may be brought into Australia through the
United States to avoid the suspicion attached to a shipment from Bangkok or
Hong Kong. In the result, I cannot conclude that any of the importation was to
be distributed in the United States. Riley’s statements in this regard may have
been merely a “blind” ...11


I believe the Commissioner was himself “blind” to the idea of the Sydney
Connection. My own interpretation of this conflicting evidence is the other
possibility that Woodward conceded; that Riley and his network would move 1.5
tonnes in Australia, while Fratianno and the San Francisco Mafia would move the
larger consignment in the U.S.

Riley’s evidence was self-serving, designed to minimise his role as a drug
trafficker and any attendant jail sentence. Although the pattern of his travels and his
use of aliases over several years were consistent with his involvement in drug
trafficking, Riley said he was largely engaged in smuggling gems. The evidence
established links between Riley and with persons in the United States who (on
Riley’s own admission) bore the reputation of being leading gangsters and members
of the Mafia. Riley explained these connections by saying he was negotiating with
them over the legitimate importation into the United States of lobster and beef
because of their power over waterfront labour. Riley covered up his close
relationship with Nugan Hand too. He admitted that he had met Hand socially in
Sydney, but denied meeting him in Hong Kong (where his drug transactions took
part). He also said that he never met Frank Nugan. He conceded that he may have
been to Nugan Hand’s corporate office in Macquarie Street, but he denied having
any dealings with the company.12

Woodward’s opinion of Riley’s evidence was:
If there is one fact which has emerged with clarity from Riley’s evidence
before this Commission, it is this: that the co-operation and assistance he
volunteered to police after his arrest and the information he gave to them and
to Commission Investigators was, for the most part, a deliberate and
thoroughly cynical web of lies, designed to mislead the police and the
investigators or, at least, to tell them nothing of any real value, and at the
same time to secure for himself their good offices when he came to be
sentenced and to be considered for parole.13

It paid off too.

At Riley’s trial a senior police officer gave evidence that Riley had ‘co-operated
with the police’ and had revealed detailed information which was of ‘much
assistance’. The learned trial judge took this into account in passing sentence,
treating Riley’s co-operation with the police as ‘a substantial matter in his favour’.
Riley pleaded guilty to being the ‘transportation agent’ for 1.5 tonnes of the Anoa’s
cargo and was sentenced to ten years jail (with a minimum of five) by Judge
Kenneth Torrington in October 1978.

The old fox was out in five, glowing with good health, and looking ten years
younger than his fifty nine years. He spent that summer talking to Phil Jarratt about a
book about the Anoa adventure. Riley took Jarratt to long, boozy lunches with
‘business associates’, Australian ‘wise-guys’ who, like Riley, ‘favoured all-year


tans, chunky gold jewellery and red jags’. The book foundered on Riley’s inability to
tell the truth about his exploits.14

Although Riley lost large sums of money on ‘the Big One’, at least some of it
came from another source: Riley was made bankrupt in 1983 owing $132,497 to
Nugan Hand Bank (in liquidation). Riley’s ex-rowing partner, Mervyn Wood,
resigned as New South Wales police commissioner in June 1979, a year after Riley’s
arrest, amid allegations of corruption in the police force, including gambling,
prostitution and drugs.

If crime doesn’t pay, it seems no one ever explained this to Murray Riley.
Unreformed, he continued on his way as criminal mastermind, until retirement came.
Aged 65, he sat in a cold English gaol awaiting trial for conspiring to defraud British
Aerospace of $103 million. The gaol was minimum security and proved no
challenge for Riley, who simply walked out the door, beating the law one last time.


Chapter 21

Bela Csidei and Harry Wainwright

In 1980, in his Further Report, Justice Woodward recommended that a joint state
and Commonwealth police task force should be set up to investigate the drug
smuggling activities of Harry Wainwright, Murray Riley and Nugan Hand. Thus the
investigation of the principals of the Sydney Connection fell to the New South
Wales-Commonwealth Joint Task Force. Their report presented a detailed
investigation of Murray Riley and Nugan Hand, providing a more accurate picture of
the Mr Bigs of the drug trade in New South Wales than Justice Woodward. It also
revealed a good deal more about Nugan Hand’s drug activities than the Stewart royal
commission. Significantly, this was the only report that looked in detail at all the
principals of the second Sydney Connection.

The Joint Task Force report was in four volumes, but the first volume was never
released to the public. It contained an account of the final plantation belonging to the
Sydney Connection, Bela Csidei’s crop at Wollogorang Station in the Northern
Territory, as well as information on Bela Csidei and Harry Wainwright. Because this
part of the report was never published, and because Wainwright and Csidei told
different stories in court, the details in this chapter are, as a consequence, sketchy
and inconclusive. Were they principals themselves? Or were they fronts for more
powerful forces?

Bela Csidei

Murray Riley’s associate in the trans-Pacific drug trade, Bela Csidei, was born in
Budapest, Hungary, on 10 August 1932. Csidei migrated to Australia in the 1950s
where he joined up with his countryman, Emil Herbert Peter Abeles. While Sir Peter
Abeles’ dizzying climb to billionaire status propelled him to the centre of power in
Australia, Csidei’s relationship with Abeles remained close: Csidei said Abeles
treated him like a son; others accused Csidei of being a front man for Abeles.

Abeles was a member of a powerful, right-wing emigre group (which included
Alexander Barton, Sir Paul Strasser and Sir Ivan Charody) who were referred to as
‘the Hungarian Mafia’. It was members of this group who had funded Bernie


Houghton when he first came to Australia, and who provided employment for
Michael Hand.

Csidei associated with Murray Riley in his visits to the U.S. in 1976 and 1977 and
Csidei and Riley were photographed with Teamsters’ Union official Rudy Tham and
Mafia leader James ‘the Weasel’ Fratianno in San Francisco in 1976. From
Fratianno, Csidei acquired some exotic cannabis seed whose produce was
guaranteed to ‘blow your head off’, according to Csidei.

Back in Australia, Csidei established a 4 acre plot of this Mafia ‘superweed’ on
his property at Wollogorang Station in the Northern Territory in June 1977, but the
wonder crop did not flourish. The plants grew slowly, and after four months many
were only five centimetres tall. In need of cash, Csidei harvested some pot in
November. On 7 December, Queensland police arrested a Sydney-bound courier at
Mt Isa in possession of 140 kilos of cannabis. Allegedly beaten, the courier revealed
the source of the marijuana. The next day Northern Territory police raided the Csidei
property and discovered the cannabis some thirty kilometres from the station’s
homestead. Csidei surrendered himself at Sydney CIB after the station manager
implicated him as financier and organiser of the crop. Bizarrely, Csidei claimed that
the crop really belonged to Murray Riley and Harry Wainwright, and he was just
‘renting’ the land to them. At his trial in September 1978, evidence was given that he
had borrowed $10,000 from Fratianno, and if he did not pay it, he would be history.

Was Csidei a Mr Big? Although his four acres of Mafia superweed would fetch
close to $50 million today, his trial judge didn’t think so. Csidei was sentenced in the
Northern Territory Supreme Court to a mere fifteen months imprisonment, with a
non-parole period of only nine months; the trial judge, Mr Justice Foster,
characterised Csidei as ‘a silly and greedy man, not a criminal mastermind’.1
Csidei was treated even more leniently than Murray Riley. The police report on
him was never made public. Csidei was similarly spared from Woodward’s

Harry Wainwright

Harry Wainwright was regarded by the Joint Task Force as a major financier of
Riley’s drug importations, and they clearly saw Wainwright as a creature of the San
Francisco Mafia, describing him as ‘an associate of known Mafia leaders’. In his
defense, Wainwright could claim that this was not surprising for someone in his
profession: Wainwright had practiced criminal defense law in San Francisco, until
his disbarment. Indicted on tax charges, he fled to Sydney in 1973, becoming an
Australian citizen to escape extradition to the U.S. In Sydney, he met up with the


‘Ocker Nostra’ and it seems he served as an intermediary between organised crime
in the U.S. and Australia.

Wainwright was present at the first meeting of Riley and Nugan. After that
Wainwright became a major sponsor of Murray Riley’s drug activities via his Nugan
Hand account. Wainwright’s first known deposit with Nugan Hand occurred on 4
November 1975 when he lodged $25,000. This transaction was unusual in that it was
left with Nugan Hand for only a week, and was withdrawn on 11 November 1975.
Coleambally was busted on 10 November 1975. Since Wainwright’s other deposits
were drug-related, this deposit could well be Coleambally-related.

Around the time of his second deposit, Wainwright told Frank Nugan that he
regarded Riley and his associate Ken Derley as ‘good boys and if they want any of
my money they can use it’. He deposited $30,000 in Sydney on 5 April 1976 and
eight days later Riley withdrew half that amount in Hong Kong dollars from Nugan
Hand in Hong Kong to fund his first heroin importation. The rest was used for
Riley’s second heroin importation in June. In August, Wainwright deposited
$US50,000 in Sydney and an equivalent amount was withdrawn a few days later by
Riley in Hong Kong for the third importation. For the fourth importation, Riley
withdrew $70,000 from Hong Kong, though this time there seems to have been no
corresponding deposit by Wainwright or Riley at the Sydney office, leading to
speculation that Nugan Hand ‘loaned’ the money for this importation. To cover the
fifth importation in December, a combination of Riley, Derley, Wainwright and two
others deposited $80,000 in Sydney. The funding details suggests that the first three
consignments were for the U.S. Mafia alone (paid via Wainwright) but, after the
criminal takeover in late 1976, Riley and Derley began ordering for an Australian
network as well.

Although Wainwright’s account was a significant source of funds for Riley, it
was not the only source. Both Wainwright and Riley had accounts with Nugan Hand,
but it seems that much of the money shelled out for Riley in Hong Kong was never
reimbursed from these accounts. When Riley was made bankrupt in 1983 he owed
$132,497 to Nugan Hand. The Joint Task Force speculated that Nugan Hand were
lending Riley money, thereby financing the drug trade. They also accused
Wainwright of being involved in the financing of the Anoa.

Just as Michael Hand and Murray Riley became good friends in 1976,
Wainwright and Frank Nugan became friends also, and the two lawyers played chess
together and socialised. The Joint Task Force reported that ‘just after the arrival of a
big load of heroin from Asia’ (Riley’s second importation in June 1976),
Wainwright held a lavish party at his Darling Point penthouse which was attended
by Frank Nugan and other Sydney-based employees of Nugan Hand.


Besides Frank Nugan, Murray Riley and the U.S. Mafia, Wainwright was well
connected with most of the principals of the Sydney Connection. He was a close
associate of Daniel Drake, an American who was arrested with Bela Csidei over the
cultivation of a large marijuana plantation on Wollogorang Station in the Northern
Territory. In his defence Csidei claimed that the marijuana was being grown by
Wainwright and Riley and that he was just ‘renting’ them the property. Drake and
Wainwright had also purchased a property known as Red Hill near Port Macquarie.
In the deportation proceedings against Drake, Mr Justice Brennan said he was
satisfied that marijuana was grown by Drake at Red Hill.

Wainwright came to the attention of the Woodward Royal Commission because
he had travelled with Wings Travel. As Woodward noted disapprovingly ‘on his
own evidence, he is an associate of Riley, Sinclair, Derley, Csidei, Neville Stevens
and Karl Bonnette, all of whom have strong links with drug trafficking....He did
business with Michael Hand and Frank Nugan and says that he knew the latter
socially.’ 2

But if knowing Frank Nugan was an offence, then some of the most powerful men
in the U.S. and Australia would be behind bars. Despite the insinuations of Csidei
and the suspicions of Justice Woodward and the Joint Task Force, Harry Wainwright
was never convicted of any crime in Australia. A few years later, the University of
New South Wales considered him of good enough character to lecture to their law


Chapter 22:

The Trojan Horse Bank

Justice Moffitt predicted that US organised crime would arrive in Australia in the
Trojan horse of legitimate business, fashioned for concealment and respectability
with the aid of expert accountants, lawyers and businessmen. The Nugan Hand Bank
was Moffit’s predicted Trojan horse. To the outside world, the Nugan Hand Bank
appeared to be an ordinary commercial bank. In reality, it was a black bank for black
money, set up to hide money made from arms smuggling, drug trafficking, money
laundering and tax avoidance.

What the Nugan Hand Bank offered its clients was a highly confidential banking
service; the identity of many bank clients were known only to Michael Hand and one
other trusted employee. To achieve this anonymity, Hand devised a system whereby
clients were offered a client number, and were referred to in bank records by this
number alone. The number code was used for bank principals too; Hand himself was
536 and Frank Nugan was 537. Reflecting his intelligence background, Hand also
introduced a system of codes to transmit messages between the various offices of the
Nugan Hand Bank.1

The Nugan Hand manual reflected Hand’s obsession with secrecy. It gave
detailed steps to ensure clients’ privacy including ‘maximum security’ for sensitive
clients, allocation of code words and numbered accounts, and the forwarding of
correspondence in envelopes having no company markings or return address. It was
this section of the manual that Hand instructed Nugan Hand staff to shred after Frank
Nugan’s death.

These features made Nugan Hand ideal for drug traffickers. Deposits were
afforded the utmost secrecy, and the bank had no qualms at all about black money.

Facilities were available for the transfer of funds overseas to those countries where
Nugan Hand had branch offices; in particular, it was very easy to use Nugan Hand to
move money from Australia covertly to Hong Kong, Thailand, and to the USA. In
the 1970s, in the days before financial deregulation, there were laws controlling how
much money you could send out of Australia. Consider how useful the Nugan Hand
Bank was for an entrepreneur in the trans-Pacific drug trade like Murray Riley,
trying to finance the Big One. Riley had to pay for his five tonnes of cannabis in
Hong Kong, pay for transport and protection in Bangkok, distribute money to his
clubland gang in Sydney, as well as deal with the Mafia in San Francisco.


Conveniently, Nugan Hand had branches in all these places; Riley simply had to
open accounts with Nugan Hand for his criminal network and much of the
organisation was done. If your purpose was smuggling buddha sticks from the
Golden Triangle or hashish from Lebanon, where there was also a branch, Nugan
Hand was perfectly designed.

The bank was used by most of the major syndicates smuggling heroin from South
East Asia into Australia, and by many minor drug dealers as well. Bank principals
Michael Hand and George Shaw had numerous drug clients in Australia and they
actively recruited drug traffickers.

George Shaw was a Lebanese man first employed by Nugan Hand in April 1974
to gather deposits for Nugan Hand Ltd. For the Stewart Royal Commission, Shaw
reluctantly identified a number of clients whom he either knew or suspected were
involved in drug trafficking, and they included many Lebanese hashish dealers.
These accounts were kept in a blue book described by Mr Shaw as an ‘off-ledger’.2

Shaw said he understood he was assisting cash clients to hide funds from the
Commissioner of Taxation. He offered cash clients the advantages of anonymity, the
receipt of interest in cash, and the payment of funds overseas. One of Shaw’s clients,
who was selling heroin, said that Shaw asked him to recruit ‘other people in the
business’ for the Nugan Hand group. He mentioned this to other drug sellers and
several of these made use of the company’s facilities. Shaw agreed that the whole
purpose of the exercise was to attract people with black money and to assure them
that their anonymity would be preserved. When a person with black money made a
deposit, Shaw would not ask the source of such money. Other witnesses told Justice
Stewart that Shaw had helped a number of Chinese heroin sellers use Nugan Hand to
remit their money overseas. Shaw’s evidence showed that substantial amounts of the
black money that Nugan Hand recruited came from the drug trade.3

While George Shaw was recruiting Lebanese dealers in Sydney, Michael Hand
handled Murray Riley and friends, Andrew Lowe recruited from Sydney’s Chinese
community, and Evans, Wong and Collins were sent to Thailand to recruit drug
money there. In Griffith, Australia’s ‘pot capital’, the Griffith growers had secret
accounts with the Nugan Group, and there was a constant flow of money between
the bank and Frank Nugan’s family company. The clients of Nugan Hand were a
who’s-who of the drug trade. By 1977, Nugan Hand and its associates dominated the
Australian drug trade in a way that had never been achieved before.

The key element in the expansion of drug trafficking in Australia, in the years
following the fall of Vietnam, is the relationship between Murray Riley and his
group and Michael Hand and Frank Nugan. The Joint Task Force’s assessment of
Nugan Hand’s association with the Riley group is typically restrained:


Briefly, it seems highly probable that Hand knew Riley and Wainwright were
involved in drug trafficking and their requests for use of Nugan Hand facilities
for the movement of money in furtherance of their activity. And knowing this,
Hand assisted them not only by freely offering the use of those facilities, but
indeed encouraging that use.4

While Riley helped Wings Travels become the travel company of choice for a
network of couriers, Nugan Hand established a bank capable of moving money
around the Pacific rim, in particular, the Thailand-Australia-USA triangle.

Meanwhile, the criminal takeover of the old hippie network occurred, establishing a
large network in Australia for moving heroin as well as pot. It seems a well-planned
move, establishing the infrastructure for a re-routing of the Southeast Asian drug
trade via Sydney. It was a drug-smuggling conspiracy of global proportion, far larger
than Australia itself could maintain.


Illustration 15: The Nugan Hand bank


Chapter 23

The Small Army:

The Nugan Hand Team

The original Trojan horse hid a small army inside, and so too did the Trojan horse
bank. One of the unique features of the Nugan Hand Bank was the number of high
ranking, former members of the US military with service in Vietnam who became
directors or representatives for the bank, despite their uniform lack of banking
experience. On the inside of the Trojan horse bank there were three US generals, one
US admiral and an ex-head of the CIA. Indeed, incredible as it may seem, these
officials had previously been the commanders who supervised the US withdrawal
from the Vietnam War!

Chief among these retired military and naval officers was Rear Admiral Earl
Yates, the first president of Nugan Hand, who graduated from the U.S. Naval
academy in 1943 and served in World War II, Korea and Vietnam. Yates was
formerly head of planning for the U.S. Pacific Command and senior aide to the
Secretary of the U.S. Navy. His final assignment was Deputy Chief of Staff U.S.
Pacific Command during the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Vietnam in 1974.

Admiral Yates became director and president of the Nugan Hand Bank in early
1977; he was also the director of the company in the Grand Cayman Islands. With
Yates came a number of other US military officers including General Leroy Manor
who was the Nugan Hand representative in the Philippines; Yates was also involved
in the Manila office with General Manor. Yates also engaged General Edwin Black
and General Earle Cocke, Nugan Hand contact in Washington DC.1

General Edwin Black was born on 17 August 1915. He attended the US military
academy at West Point and served with the US Army in the Second World War,
Vietnam and Korea. He was assigned to the Office for Strategic Studies (the OSS —
the forerunner of the CIA) and the National Security Council. Command
assignments included duty with the OSS, the 82nd Airborne Division, Assistant
Division Commander of the 25th Infantry Division and later Commanding General
of the U.S. Army during the Vietnam conflict. He retired from the US army in 1970.
Despite having no banking experience, Black joined Nugan Hand in 1977 as the
representative in Hawaii, and was involved with the sale of helicopters,


fragmentation bombs, ammunition, and shelters for combat aircraft to Thailand and
South Korea.2

Lieutenant General Leroy J Manor, born 21 February 1921, was a highly
decorated fighter pilot who served with the U.S. Air Force in World War II, Korea
and Vietnam and was commander of the 13th Air Force in the Philippines. A former
Chief of Staff of the U.S. Pacific Command, the largest operational military
command in the U.S., he planned and executed the Son Tay Raid, the major U.S.
military operation into North Vietnam during the Vietnam War. After retirement he
became an adviser to the Pentagon on the successful renegotiation of the U.S. bases
in Clark and Subic Bay in the Philippines. In February 1979 he became Nugan Hand
representative in the Philippines, sharing an office with President Marcos’s brotherin-
law. Among his many awards, General Manor held the U.S. Distinguished
Services Medal, Legion of Merit, and the Distinguished Flying Cross.3

General Earl Cocke, a US citizen born in 1921, was another high-ranking officer
employed by Nugan Hand. He served with distinction during World War II and was
highly decorated. In 1951 he was appointed special consultant to the US Secretary of
Defence and subsequently served as a civilian aide. In 1959 he served as a US
delegate to the United Nations with the rank of Ambassador. In 1961 he was
appointed Alternate Executive Director of the International Bank for Reconstruction
and Development and, after 1964, provided a managerial consultancy service. He
provided office space for Nugan Hand in Washington. A well known Washington
lobbyist, General Cocke established the U.S. government contacts for the group to
negotiate the takeover of the former U.S. naval base on Grand Turk Island for the
resettlement of Hmong refugees from Indochina.4

William Colby, whose business card was found on the body of Frank Nugan, was
the head of the CIA from 1973 to 1976. During the Vietnam War, he was the
organiser of the Phoenix programme — a program of assassination designed to
terrorise the Viet Cong, and he may have met Michael Hand there. After retiring
from the CIA, Colby went into partnership with a Washington law firm and worked
as legal adviser to Nugan Hand International. Like General Cocke and Admiral
Yates, Colby was employed to work on the project that involved the resettlement of
Hmong refugees in Central and South America. Colby and Hand met with officials
of the Turks and Caicos Islands to discuss the resettlement of the Hmong refugees
there. At the time of Nugan’s death, Hand was in London with Admiral Yates
meeting British foreign office officials in connection with this resettlement scheme.
Colby also acted as a lawyer for both Nugan and Hand.5


Chapter 24

The CIA Bank?

The Blond Ghost and the Merchant of Death

Theodore George Shackley, born in 1927, was never employed by Nugan Hand
because he already had a job. At the time the second Sydney Connection began, Ted
Shackley was the Director of the Eastern Division of the CIA; later he became the
Associate Director of the Directorate of Operations, the division that ran the CIA’s
secret wars and dirty tricks. If Nugan Hand were a secret operation by the Eastern
Division of the CIA, then Shackley is a man we might expect to be involved. As it
turns out, Ted Shackley was very closely associated with Michael Hand, Ed Wilson,
Tom Clines, Bernie Houghton and nearly all the other Nugan Hand players. To
further strengthen the secret war in Laos connection, Shackley was the CIA station
chief there during Hand’s time in Laos.

Shackley, the ‘Blond Ghost’, joined the CIA in 1951. Over the next two decades
he emerged as the agency’s ‘dirty tricks’ specialist, the USA’s foremost covert Cold
War warrior. In 1962 he became head of JMWAVE - the agency’s Miami Station
directing ‘dirty tricks’ against Castro and Cuba. In 1966 he became Chief of Station
in Laos and directed the secret war there, earning his other nickname, ‘the Butcher
of Laos’.1

For Shackley, his years in Laos must have been intoxicating. He sat in the
Ambassador’s office, tall, thin, and owlish, with really pale, white skin — the Blond
Ghost — dealing with leaders of the Lao government, and arranging for Thai
artillery strikes and US bombers. He had his own secret Hmong army to map a
strategy for. It was a modest secret war, with an invisible hit-and-run force. With his
trademark ruthless efficiency, Shackley built up the Hmong army to a force of
20,000. He ushered in a new war, more ambitious, with battalion-sized assaults on
the Ho Chi Minh Trail. This escalation led to a commensurate response from the
North Vietnamese.2

Everyone knew the Hmong fought to protect their rich opium crop. Opium was
legal in Laos, and it was the opium trade that subsidised the secret war. Most of the
Hmong villages were perched on steep mountains plateaus where the opium poppy
grew well, overlooking valleys and towns controlled by the Pathet Lao. Under CIA
supervision, dozens of crude landing strips for Air America aircraft were hacked out
of the mountain forests, and the scattered Hmong villages were linked with CIA


headquarters. As the secret war progressed, more than 20 new landing strips dotted
the conquered corridor, linking Long Tieng to the villages. It enabled two-way
traffic with arms and food going to the Hmong while Hmong opium was brought
back. The CIA’s proprietary airline, Air America, became the principal conduit for
smuggling Hmong opium and a heroin laboratory was established at CIA
headquarters in Long Tieng. In 1967 the United Nations reported that poppy farmers
in the Golden Triangle (situated in north-eastern Burma, northern Thailand and
northern Laos) were producing 1000 tonnes of raw opium which was then about
70% of the world’s opium crop.3

It was during the Shackley period in Laos that Michael Hand, as a member of the
Special Forces, was ‘loaned’ to the CIA. Kermit Walker “Buddy” King, Hand’s later
business partner, worked with Shackley and was one of Air America’s best pilots.
On a number of occasions, King was responsible for flying Hand to and from his
operational outpost in the Hmong hill tribes area of Laos. As CIA station chief,
Shackley was responsible for both ground and air cover in Laos. Air cover involved
the CIA proprietary companies, Air America and Civilian Air Transport, and was the
responsibility of General Richard Secord. Ground cover, involving Michael Hand
and other members of the U.S. Special Forces, was the responsibility of Thomas
Clines, who was Hand’s more immediate supervisor. Clines and Secord were major
players in the drugs-for-guns Iran-Contra affair two decades later; again, Clines’
partnership with Shackley was close.4

For the men like Michael Hand who directed Shackley’s secret army, Laos meant
‘Spook Heaven’ — the secret CIA financed city of Long Tieng. It had no paved
streets, and almost no cars, yet a 3,000 foot runway divided the city. Its tribal
population of Hmong topped 45,000 and its major industry was heroin. In the
shadow of mist draped mountains, it was a Shangri-la where US pilots and contract
agents dressed like surf bums or jungle adventurers, and went ‘native’ or ‘troppo’ in
heart-of-darkness territory in the taverns, whorehouses and opium dens.5

For US policy makers, the secret war in Laos was ‘something of which we can be
proud as Americans. It involved virtually no American casualties’. In comparison to
Vietnam, it was ‘very cost-effective’. It was the Hmong who did all the messy dying
business. By the time Shackley left Laos in October 1968, it was estimated that of
the Hmong who had taken up arms to fight for the US, one quarter had been killed in
action. Civilian casualties totalled 40,000 — almost one in ten of the Hmong.

Thanks to the Butcher of Laos, the Hmong were well on the road to decimation.6
In 1968 Shackley was posted to Vietnam, becoming Station Chief in Saigon. In
1971 he became head of the CIA’s Western Division (covering North and South
America) where he plotted the overthrow of Allende in Chile, and chased agency


whistle-blower, Phillip Agee. In 1974 Shackley became head of the Eastern Division
of the CIA, covering Asia and Australia.

In May 1974, Gough Whitlam was re-elected Prime Minister of Australia and Jim
Cairns, US critic and anti-Vietnam War campaigner, became Deputy Prime Minister.
They were men whom President Nixon and the CIA hated intensely. One of the last
acts of Nixon’s presidency was to order a CIA review of the US alliance with
Australia on 1 July 1974, shortly after Whitlam was re-elected. The US government
has refused to de-classify the CIA’s response to this order, but many suspect that a
dirty tricks campaign against Whitlam and the Left in Australia was begun then. The
fall of Jim Cairns, the Loans Affair, the Pine-Gap security crisis, and the events of
the Whitlam Dismissal on 11 November 1975 are seen to be part of this conspiracy.
If there were such a dirty tricks campaign, then Ted Shackley would have directed it
as the head of the Eastern Division of the CIA. He was again ‘the man in the chair’
when Vietnam fell in April 1975.7

While the role played by Shackley and Nugan Hand in a dirty tricks campaign
aimed at the overthrow of the Whitlam government remains speculation, there is no
doubt about the role that Shackley played in the security crisis of November 1975.
The security crisis revolved around the so-called ‘joint facility’ at Pine Gap, one of
the CIA’s most important assets. Whitlam had threatened that if the U.S. tried to
‘bounce’ his government, he would look at the U.S. bases in Australia. As it
happened, the lease for Pine Gap was due for renewal in December 1975. On 10
November 1975, the day before Whitlam was sacked, Shackley sent an extraordinary
cable from the CIA to ASIO’s Director General, threatening to remove ASIO from
the UK-USA agreement because he considered Whitlam (the Prime Minister of
Australia) was a security threat! The cable was published by the Financial Review in
1977 and has been widely reprinted. It is the smoking gun that shows Shackley’s
involvement in the security crisis.

The grounds for Shackley’s fury was that Whitlam had accused the CIA of
funding the opposition National Party, and had claimed that CIA money was being
used to influence domestic Australian politics. In particular, Whitlam was asking
questions about the close relationship between Richard Stallings, who ran the socalled
joint facility at Pine Gap, and the leader of the National Party, Doug Anthony.
‘The CIA has grave concerns as to where this type of public discussion may lead,’
said Shackley’s cable of 10 November 1975. Whitlam was due to reveal Richard
Stallings was a CIA agent on November 11, but Sir John Kerr famously intervened.
In his speech calling for a royal commission into the activities of the CIA in
Australia (see Appendix 2), Whitlam called Shackley’s cable ‘a clear example of the
attempted deception of the Australian Government by the American intelligence


community ...The message was offensive in tone, deceitful in intent and sinister in
its implications’.

When the second Sydney Connection developed, Shackley’s Eastern division of
the CIA faced four major problems: how to arrange the retreat of the remnant
Hmong army stranded in Thai refugee camps after the loss of the secret war in Laos;
how to redirect the Southeast Asian drug trade following the loss of Vietnam; how to
finance the anti-Whitlam forces inside Australia; and how to destroy the
Whitlamites. Michael Hand and the Nugan Hand Bank would solve all four. During
the subsequent marijuana Drought and heroin plague of 1977-1979, there would be
allegations of a conspiracy by heroin traffickers to cause the Drought and sell large
amounts of Southeast Asian heroin in Australia: Shackley could have organised such
a conspiracy, and he had been involved in a similar conspiracy; his period in Laos
coincided with the first Sydney Connection of John Wesley Egan and the Corset

Shackley played a key role in the removal of the Whitlam government during the
‘security crisis’ of November 1975. As a reward for that, in 1976 Shackley was
promoted to the number two position in the covert division of the CIA, becoming
Assistant Director of the Directorate of Operations. He was one step away from the
big chair.8

If the Republicans had won the 1976 US elections, Shackley would have become
Director of the CIA. However, they didn’t, and, in 1977, President Carter appointed
Admiral Stansfield Turner to be CIA Director. Turner became increasingly uneasy
about the ‘rogue’ activities of the CIA’s ‘old guard’ including Shackley, whom he
pushed out of the operations directorate. This was the end of the climb. Realising he
had no future under Turner, Shackley left the CIA in 1979.

In the early eighties, the scandals surrounding Ed Wilson and Nugan Hand forced
Shackley to finally abandon his dreams of becoming CIA Director. Following the
Iran-Contra scandal, Shackley became the chief target of a highly publicised lawsuit
by the Christic Institute alleging that he, along with Ed Wilson, led a rogue element
in the CIA who were responsible for many crimes worldwide, involving drug
smuggling, arms running and assassination. This was ‘the Shooters Gang’, a group
of rogue spies who socialised by going shooting together at Ed Wilson’s farm. It is
this group of ‘patriots’ who were alleged to have run the CIA’s secret wars and were
involved in Golden Triangle heroin, Nugan Hand, and the Iran-Contra’ drugs-forguns
deal in Nicaragua.9

Ed Wilson and the Second CIA


Although the Nugan Hand Bank is routinely referred to as a CIA bank, it may not
have belonged to Ted Shackley and the CIA; rather it may have belonged to a much
smaller and far more secretive U.S. intelligence agency, US Naval Intelligence Task
Force 157, run by Ted Shackley’s close friend, Ed Wilson.

Ed Wilson joined the CIA in 1955. In 1960 he was assigned to the Seafarers’
International Union as a deep-cover contract agent, where he spied on labour unions,
monitored shipping, and paid off Corsican gangsters to lean on communist
dockworkers in Europe. In 1965 he opened up a business, Marine Consulting
Associates, an ocean freight forwarder that was a front company handling sea
logistics for CIA programs. The Agency man in charge of Maritime was Tom Clines,
deputy chief of the division’s maritime branch. Wilson and Clines became friends. In
1966, Tom Clines was recruited by Ted Shackley for the secret war in Laos.

When the CIA was ordered to rein in its free wheeling proprietary companies in
1970, Wilson was allowed to leave the CIA and keep his proprietary companies. He
was recruited instead to Task Force 157, a small, secret unit of naval intelligence
that ran agents — dockworkers, seaman, shipping agents and port prostitutes — to
monitor traffic on the high seas. Under Wilson, Task Force 157 set up a string of
proprietary companies world-wide. Effectively, Task Force 157 took over the
management of front companies from the CIA. The success of this venture inspired
Wilson with the notion of expanding Task Force 157 to make it into a second CIA.

Thanks to the US government’s generosity that gave him his proprietary
companies, Wilson became a multi-millionaire. A string of congressman, Capitol
Hill aides, generals and admirals appreciated his lavish hospitality. So also did a
group of spooks and secret warriors who met with Wilson to go shooting at his
Mount Airy Farm in northern Virginia. Chief among them were a group of cold war
warriors who had fought the secret war in Laos: Tom Clines, Richard Secord, Erich
von Marbod, a top pentagon aide, and Ted Shackley, the CIA’s rising star. This was
the legendary ‘Shooters Gang’.

In February 1976, Wilson pitched Admiral Bobby Ray Inman, head of Naval
Intelligence with his dream of expanding Task Force 157 into a second CIA. He
boasted of having covert sources around the globe, and dropped a long list of names
including his ‘good friend Ted Shackley out at CIA’. Wilson told the Admiral he
was aware Naval Intelligence was having budgetary problems, and promised that if
the Admiral backed his scheme, he would get all the money he wanted. A legendary
straight-shooter, Inman was shocked that one of his subordinates was trying to bribe
him. When Inman decided to shut down Task Force 157, Ted Shackley rang Inman
to tell him Wilson could not be dismissed because of ‘national security’. Inman did


not buy this: if Wilson was so important, he reasoned, the CIA could pick up the tab.
Whether they did or not became the central issue at Wilson’s trial.

Wilson lost his contract with Naval Intelligence in April 1976. It was around this
time that Michael Hand successfully arranged for Nugan Hand to become a bank,
which it did in August 1976. The previous year, Hand had worked for Wilson,
smuggling guns to U.S. backed rebels in Southern Africa. So the puppet master
behind Nugan Hand may have been the freelancing Ed Wilson and not Ted

While all the high-ranking U.S. brass on board the Nugan Hand Bank makes it
seem likely that Nugan Hand was owned by some U.S. intelligence agency, the CIA
seems to be too high-profile, too well-known, and too penetrated (by U.S. liberals as
well as the KGB) to be the sponsoring agency. As well, the fate of Ed Wilson and
Ted Shackley shows that the CIA was cleaning up its act in 1976. The cowboys, men
like Shackley and Wilson, were now the hunted. In this atmosphere, it is unlikely
that Shackley could have contemplated a scheme so far outside the law as Nugan
Hand, whereas Ed Wilson, recently ‘liberated’ from any bureaucratic oversight, was
free to go where no cowboy had ever gone before. Although the Nugan Hand crew
were very close to Shackley, this could be explained by Shackley’s friendship with
Ed Wilson.

Despite the loss of his navy contract, Ed Wilson kept his companies and carried
on with his dream of a ‘second CIA’, though changed into the concept of a ‘freeenterprise
CIA’. Ed Wilson now became the ‘Merchant of Death’ offering global
assassination, arms-dealing, and anti-terrorist training to anyone who would pay.

One world leader prepared to purchase Ed Wilson’s services was Libya’s Colonel
Gadaffi. Ed Wilson shipped Gadaffi 42,000 pounds of the plastic explosive C-4, said
to be the most powerful, non-nuclear explosive made. Wilson hired U.S. experts —
former U.S. Army Green Berets — to teach Gadaffi’s people how to make bombs
shaped like lamps, ashtrays, briefcases and radios from the C-4. The Libyan terrorist
bombing of the aircraft at Lockerbie may well be one of the fruits of Wilson’s
training. Gadaffi paid Wilson millions, and, in return, Wilson helped Gadaffi
develop a credible terrorist threat. However, when Wilson arranged the assassination
of Libyan opposition leaders in Egypt, the real CIA decided Wilson had gone too far.

The U.S. government charged Wilson with illegal arms sales to Libya. In his
defence, Wilson’s lawyers argued that Wilson was still working for the CIA, and
that the CIA had known and sanctioned the activities for which he was now on trial.
The U.S. government denied this, insisting that Wilson had not been re-employed by
the CIA after he lost his contract with Naval Intelligence. Although the CIA asserted
that Wilson left the Agency in 1971, Agency record showed no less than 80 ‘non


social’ contacts between Wilson and the CIA between 1971 and 1978, chiefly
meetings with Agency personnel, especially Shackley, Clines and Shackley’s

Whatever the truth was about Ed Wilson’s relationship with the CIA, Wilson was
convicted for illegal arms sales to Libya and sentenced to life imprisonment. Two
decades later, he remains in gaol. Given all the dirty secrets he knew, there seems
little doubt that in Ed Wilson’s case life imprisonment will really mean life.


Chapter 25

Frank Nugan and the Murder of Donald Mackay

If Mackay’s crusading activities were deemed to be a threat to the
continuance of large-scale marihuana growing around Griffith, the key to who
was troubled the most must surely lie in who had the most to lose: the
marihuana growers, with their grass castles in Griffith, or the real Mr Bigs, with
their mansions in Sydney.1

Bob Bottom, The Godfather in Australia

The Australian partner in the Nugan Hand Bank, Frank Nugan, was born in Griffith
in 1942, the son of a Spanish migrant who started a fruit packing business there. The
playboy heir to a modest food processing fortune, Nugan got a law degree in 1963
from Sydney University and a Master of Law from Berkeley University in 1965.
After working in Canada, he returned to Australia in 1968 and met Bernie Houghton
and Michael Hand. By the late 1970s, Frank Nugan was calling himself ‘one of the
wealthiest men in Sydney’. He drove a gold Mercedes and lived in a million dollar
mansion in Vaucluse with a harbour view and its own beach. Half owner of the
Nugan Hand Bank, at its prestigious 55 Macquarie Street address, he shared offices
overlooking Circular Quay with Sir Robert Askin, recently-retired Premier of New
South Wales.

Askin and his powerful circle were Frank Nugan’s sponsors. Admiral Yates, the
President of Nugan Hand Bank, said he accepted the position as Nugan Hand
president on the advice of Sir Robert Askin. Admiral Yates said he trusted Askin’s
opinion about the bank principals, Frank Nugan and Michael Hand, because Askin
knew them well and shared an office with them. Yates said: ‘I inquired of Sir Robert
Askin, who had a private office at 55 Macquarie Street with them, and he gave them
very strong credentials’. Yates said Askin had told him Nugan and Hand were ‘good
solid business people — a little flamboyant, but that was because they were so

Askin’s generous appraisal overlooked some serious flaws.

Frank Nugan drank too much and, from early in the morning, a glass of whisky
was always present on his desk. In April 1979, Nugan gave up alcohol for
Christianity which he embraced with the sinner’s conspicuous intensity.
Nugan touted his skills as a tax consultant and a financial adviser, but his genius
lay in deception. Secret accounts were his trademark, and he was gifted at losing


money in elaborate deceipts, scattering cheques to create bewildering paper trails.
Stewart, in his report, had a diagram of one $30,000 diversion of funds from the
Nugan Hand Bank to the Nugan Group in Griffith which Frank Nugan sent through
eleven transactions between the source (the Nugan Hand Bank) and its destination in
the Nugan Group.

The Nugan Group, Frank Nugan’s family company, began in 1941 in a primitive
shed in Banna Avenue in Griffith, packing fresh fruit and vegetables. By 1977 the
Nugan Group was valued at $11 million; it operated a major 5 acre factory complex
in Griffith and ran factories in Casino, Lismore and Brisbane. The Nugan Group was
one of Australia’s major fruit juice producers, and the largest proprietary fresh fruit
and vegetable packers and distributors in the country. It was 51% owned by the
Nugan family with another 40% controlled by four institutional shareholders.2

In early 1977, as the newspapers began calling Griffith the ‘pot capital of
Australia’, persistent rumours began circulating that the Nugan Group’s packing
plant in Griffith was somehow involved. That year, an independent audit turned up
secret accounts in the Nugan Group’s books in the names of local pot growers with
cheques for thousands of dollars made out to members of the Trimboli and Sergi
families. Members of the Trimboli and Sergi families were heavily involved in
Griffith’s marijuana trade, and family members were involved with a one acre plot
of pot at Hanwood near Griffith in February 1974, with a thirty-one acre pot
plantation at Coleambally in 1975, and with a five acre plot at Euston in March
1977. The secret accounts in their names suggest that some of the pot was being
grown for Frank Nugan.3

The gangster tactics that Frank Nugan used to hush up the affair provide further
corroboration. The Nugans argued that the cheques did not indicate payment to the
Sergis and Trimboles. They said the payee names were just phony ‘code names’
used for legitimate reasons, though they did not say what the purpose of this internal
money laundering might be. Instead, when the auditors and independent directors of
the Nugan Group tried to find out more, the Nugans responded by seeking to remove
the auditors, and by ‘intimidating’ the opposition directors.

The intimidation was impressive.

The man Frank Nugan hired as his private investigator was Fred Krahe, an ex-
NSW detective whose reputation as an underworld enforcer and hit man earned him
the nickname of the ‘Killer Cop’. In The Prince and The Premier, David Hickie
called Krahe the ‘King of crooked police during the Askin era, he organised the
abortion rackets, armed hold-ups, the framing of criminals and bribery payments
among prostitutes and the police, and he maintained a reputation feared in the
Sydney underworld’.4


Krahe, described by another NSW detective as ‘an evil bloke — a big, brooding
bastard with an aura of power and evil about him’, joined the police force in 1940
and rose to the rank of Detective-Sergeant. But in 1971 Shirley Brifman, queen of
the Kings Cross call girls, blew the whistle on his rackets, subsequently paying with
her life. Krahe retired ‘medically unfit’ from the police in 1972 and became a
licensed private investigator, working as a security chief for the developers during
the Victoria Street redevelopment/Green Ban battle in Kings Cross. In July 1975,
Juanita Nielsen, whose local newspaper NOW had led the fight against the multimillion
dollar redevelopment, disappeared. Many credit Krahe with the murder of
Juanita Nielsen, a murder with many similarities to the murder of Donald Mackay:5

* Both Juanita Nielsen and Donald Mackay were anti-corruption activists at
the two biggest centres of corruption in New South Wales; Donald Mackay in
Griffith and Juanita Nielsen in Kings Cross.
* Both discovered a network that led to the heart of the Australian
* Both were murdered because they ‘knew too much’ about the central
corrupt network; Nielsen in 1975 and Mackay in 1977.
* In both cases, Fred Krahe was employed by their opponents.
* Both were extremely professional hits; Juanita Nielsen disappeared without
a trace and Mackay’s body was never found.
* The NSW police were unable to solve either murder.6

In July 1977, Frank Nugan possessed both the motive for the murder of Donald
Mackay and the likely murder weapon, Fred Krahe. Although he was not the grower
for Euston or Coleambally, Frank Nugan was the man who paid the growers. The
second Sydney Connection, which he fronted, had access to the U.S. market; they
were the only network in Australia which could move such a large quantity of pot.

Together the two crops, Euston and Coleambally, would have produced about 90
tonnes of pot according to NSW police estimation, worth approximately $90 million
in 1977 dollars or about $1,000 million in 1998 terms. It is very likely that Frank
Nugan learned, either through Fred Krahe’s investigations or through the Euston
trial, that Donald Mackay was the man responsible for the Coleambally raid, and he
may have blamed him for Euston as well.

For Frank Nugan, these were unsettling times; it was Michael Hand’s ‘period of
anti-Americanism in Australia’. From April to July 1977, Australia was awash with
stories about CIA interference in Australia caused by the allegations of Christopher
Boyce. So loud did the chorus for a royal commission become that, on 24 May 1977,
Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser rose in parliament to deny the allegations
about CIA activities. In a prime ministerial statement, Fraser reassured the


Australian people that there is ‘a long established convention that close allies do not
conduct covert activities within each other’s territories’. As Fraser explained: ‘Such
activities are not necessary between friends’. In reply, Gough Whitlam alleged that
the CIA were secretly paying the conservative parties in 1975, and had done so since

Also in May 1977, the Narcotics Bureau opened their file on Nugan Hand with
the information that Frank Nugan and Michael Hand were ‘bigger than anything you
have seen in the heroin game’. It would not take Frank Nugan long to find out about
the file; he had a corrupt associate, Brian Alexander, who was the bagman for the
Narcotics Bureau.

Amidst this sea of troubles, the auditors of the Nugan Group presented the
greatest danger. They had Frank Nugan’s secret marijuana accounts. Fortunately for
Frank Nugan, they did not know what the accounts were for. While Woodward’s
report (published in 1979) publicly associated the Sergi and Trimboli families with
marijuana growing, such a conclusion was not so obvious in 1977. However, Frank
Nugan must have been aware that secret accounts in the name of Sergi and Trimboli
were not an unbreakable code. If anyone in Griffith had suspicions about marijuana
growing, there was one man they would approach. And if anyone could have
understood the code, it was Donald Mackay.

In July 1977, two weeks before the murder, the crisis over the secret accounts
came to a head when the auditors refused to complete the Nugan Group accounts for
the financial year.

For Frank Nugan, the winter of 1977 brought with it the threat of exposure on two
fronts — as the Mr Big of the drug trade and as the banker for the CIA. Under
pressure, Frank Nugan drank too much, and drunk he was an uncharitable man. Peter
Wilcox, an ex-British agent who was unsuccessfully recruited for Nugan Hand, met
Frank Nugan at his drunken worst. Nugan insulted Wilcox and his wife, and said of
Nugan Hand: ‘We put people away. We do the bastards over, anybody that gets in
our way we can take care of’.8

Donald Mackay had got in Frank Nugan’s way enough already; and if he knew
about Euston and Coleambally, what else might he know?

Did he know about the secret accounts?

Did he know about Frank Nugan?

What did the Man Who Knew Too Much know?

The man who was investigating these matters was Fred Krahe.

For Donald Mackay, an assassin was waiting.


Fred Krahe and the Removal of the Nugan Auditors.

Four days after the Mackay murder, on the following Tuesday, 19 July 1977, four
Nugan Group directors — H Graham, DW Webb, BD Edney, and LE Tutt (Jnr) —
as well as the company Secretary, EA Nichols, resigned. Despite this successful
board room purge, Frank Nugan still had much to do to bury the secret accounts
affair. To get rid of the evidence, Frank Nugan had to get rid of the troublesome
auditors, Hungerfords, something he achieved at an extraordinary general meeting of
the Nugan Group Ltd. in October 1977, despite strong opposition by the minority

The meeting, which lasted four hours, packed Sydney’s ANZAC House
auditorium. The minority shareholders — Mercantile Mutual, New Zealand
Insurance, the Milton Corporation and CSR Insurance — opposed Hungerfords’
removal. Their tactic was to use their numbers to force an adjournment until the day
after the company’s next annual general meeting. This could have been achieved
with a simple show of hands and would have resulted in Hungerfords’ completing
the audit of the year’s accounts.

But in the previous few days the numbers of shareholders in the Nugan Group Ltd
had dramatically increased. Many of the new shareholders had been rounded up
around Paddy’s Market and other inner-city hotels by Fred Krahe, the Nugans’
private investigator. Krahe offered his goons $10 to attend the meeting plus free
food and drinks later on. All they had to do was raise their hands when Krahe raised

With this legion of thugs and drunks as support, the Nugans forced approval of
the company accounts. Repeatedly, chairmen Ken Nugan refused to answer
questions about the company’s affairs and ruled speakers out of order. Twice the gag
was applied amid screams of ‘point of order’ 9

The Australian Shareholders’ Association (ASA) issued a press statement after
the meeting saying it would seek the Attorney-General’s intervention in the light of
the manner and conduct of the meeting, and suggested the appointment of a
government auditor to The Nugan Group Ltd. The ASA’s deputy Chairman, Mr RJ
Blackburn, described the use of the gag and other Nugan machinations as

On November 10, Liberal MLA for Lane Cove, John Dowd, repeated this call in
the Legislative Assembly and asked the Attorney-General, Frank Walker, to make
inquiries about the activities of the Nugan Group and ‘some former members of the
NSW police force’. The company’s activities were of some interest to the Royal
Commission on Drug Trafficking, Dowd said.


Dowd called on Mr Walker to investigate:
* the ‘intimidation’ of the former auditors of the Nugan Group, Hungerfords, by
persons who called to the homes of the auditor;
* the orchestration of a public meeting on October 27 when Hungerfords were
removed as the auditors of the group;
* the creation of 194 new shareholders in the group in the 48 hours before the
meeting took place;
* the role of Fred Krahe, ex-NSW detective sergeant, and other former police in
the orchestration of the meeting;
* the activities carried out by Mr Krahe in Griffith on behalf of the Nugan Group;
* the inadequate recordings of payments made by the Nugan Group to persons in
Griffith particularly those being investigated by the NSW Royal Commission into
Drug Trafficking.11

Dowd said that many at the meeting were not ‘genuine shareholders’ and said that
many of them had the same address — 55 Macquarie St, which was also the address
of a company called the Nugan Hand Bank. Of Fred Krahe, Dowd said: ‘He has, of
course, been to Griffith, has been employed by the company to carry out certain
investigations and in fact, four directors in July 1977 resigned from that company’.12
The placing of Fred Krahe in Griffith in July 1977 had implications that many
members of parliament would have noted.

In reply Attorney-General Walker announced that five officers of the Corporate
Affairs Commissions already seconded to the drugs royal commission would begin
an immediate investigation into the Nugan Group. Ken Nugan, Chairman of the
Nugan Group, in a statement which appeared as a full page ad in The Australian,
denied the allegations made ‘behind the cloak of Parliamentary Privilege’. Nugan
called Dowd’s linking of the Nugans with the drug trade and the murder of Donald
Mackay as ‘nothing short of despicable’.13

To say we have any links with the Griffith drug problem is a lie. In fact, I
personally was a very close friend of Don Mackay. I applauded the
appointment of the Drug Royal Commission most sincerely, and I fervently
hope that those people involved in marijuana growing in Griffith get the stiffest
penalties the law can provide . . . It is tragic and scandalous that our
Company, with such a fine record, should be called upon to answer these
unfounded allegations.

The Narcotics Bureau and Frank Nugan

With assistance from the U.S. embassy, Frank Nugan succeeded in closing down the
Narcotics Bureau investigation of Nugan Hand with a display of feigned outrage.


On 2 February 1978, the U.S. embassy’s Economic and Commercial Affairs
counsellor, Peter Frost, wrote a letter to the head of the Narcotics Bureau, Harvey
Bates, on behalf of Robert Jantzen. Jantzen, whom Frost referred to as ‘a retired US
government official’, was another career CIA officer (he had been the Agency’s
station chief in Thailand) who was seeking a job with Nugan Hand, but had been
told that Nugan Hand ‘may be under some sort of investigation by your
organisation’. Frost said if the investigation was negative or unwarranted, then
Jantzen ‘would like to be in a position to consider the job offer’. Enclosed with the
letter was a photocopy of a memo from Frank Nugan to Jantzen, informing him
about the Narcotics Bureau investigation, and complaining that it was commercially
“embarrassing”. 14

On February 14, Frank Nugan visited Harvey Bates in Canberra to protest
personally. In a brazen act of deception, the power-dressed Nugan protested his
innocence and complained about the Bureau’s investigation of Nugan Hand and the
“unfair publicity” it was generating for his firm. He offered to let the Bureau look at
his client records, saying he would get rid of any customers they had concerns with.
Bates declined this offer because he was afraid Nugan would dupe him, and because
it meant letting Nugan know whom the Bureau was investigating.

However, following Nugan’s visit, Bates sent off a secret memo which had the
effect of stopping the Nugan Hand investigation. Phillip Bailey, the narcotics agent
investigating Nugan Hand, said Frank Nugan decided that the best way to take the
heat off the investigation was to complain to the top officer, threatening adverse
publicity. Bailey said that Nugan had done this previously in 1974 by successfully
making waves regarding some clients who were searched at Sydney airport. Bates
replied that the fact that Frank Nugan knew about the investigation showed that the
handling of the investigation was incompetent and inept. However, all this
demonstrated was how corrupt the Bureau was. Frank Nugan’s law clerk, Brian
Alexander, had a mole at the highest level of the Narcotics Bureau who was feeding
him reports of the investigation.

Narcotic agent Bailey claimed that Nugan Hand were ‘crying out to be
investigated in 1978’, but Bureau head, Harvey Bates, disagreed. However Frank
Nugan, reporting his visit to the Narcotics Bureau, told Stephen Hill that ‘the bureau
had a large blackboard with a diagram of all the drug dealers on it, and slap bang in
the middle of the diagram was Nugan Hand Ltd’. Someone at the Narcotics Bureau
understood how central Nugan Hand was to the drug trade. The decision to close
down such an investigation must evoke suspicion.

The Corporate Affairs Investigation


For two years, Frank Nugan also managed to keep the New South Wales Corporate
Affairs investigation into the Nugan Group Ltd at bay; but he could never stop this
investigation which, like a cancer, slowly ate away at him and Nugan Hand. The
legal costs alone amounted to over $1 million, and Frank Nugan took the money
from Nugan Hand. It would prove a source of friction with Michael Hand, who was
also concerned when Nugan took another $1 million for his Sydney mansion
($600,000 for the house and $300,000 to build a beach) and another $1 million to
buy the Orange Spot companies.

Despite a determined political campaign from the Nugans to stop the Corporate
Affairs investigation, conspiracy charges over the secret accounts were laid against
Frank Nugan, Ken Nugan, several Nugan Group employees, and ex-detectives Fred
Krahe and Keith Kelly. After a committal hearing before Clarrie Briese, SM, the
charges against Krahe and Kelly were dismissed and they were awarded costs. The
other defendants were committed for trial, a fate Frank Nugan avoided by suicide.

In October 1979, with the prospect of trial looming over him, Frank Nugan
supervised a purge of the Nugan Hand accounts, tossing out much of the illegitimate
business flow. Giving up drugs and gambling would cost money, but Frank Nugan
was preparing to appear as straight as possible. Instructing the Nugan Hand legal
section to steer the bank away from illegal transactions, he told his lawyers:

We will have to go through quite a lot of files and find all the secret bank
accounts that are secret for reasons unacceptable to us ... I know of many of
these that you people don’t know of, so there’s more to get rid of than you
think, simply because I have been the main guilty party for some reason in
years gone by.15

He sounded contrite, almost confessional. Conceding that the problems in the
firm stemmed from the top, he said:

We’ve got people who at present get away with murder and never give a
damn because at one time or another you were either inside a bottle of Scotch
or in a church or whatever in this period. We are reborn, those sons of bitches
who are passing under our name, prior to today, including me. We are
different people.16

Nugan, who had given up alcohol for Christianity earlier that year, lurched from
guilt about the past to hope of an evangelical rebirth. But the guilt was undeniable,
guilt about a party who got away with murder and didn’t give a damn because his
head was inside a bottle of Scotch, someone not too dissimilar from Frank Nugan.
Death of a Banker

About 4am on Sunday 27 January 1980, police patrolling a section of roadway 10
kilometres south of Lithgow NSW checked out a Mercedes vehicle which was
parked on a disused section of the highway with its parking lights on. Inside they


found a casually dressed, middle-aged man, slumped towards the centre of the
Mercedes, dead.

A huge wound in the face made identification difficult. The dead man still
clutched a .30 calibre rifle in his hands, suggesting that he shot himself. The moat of
undisturbed gore that surrounded the body appeared to confirm this; there seemed no
way that someone else could have got into the car, killed him, and left no trace.
However no fingerprints were ever found on the rifle.17

Inside the dead man’s briefcase the police found a list containing scores of typed
names of prominent Australian political, sports, business and entertainment
personalities. Next to their names were hand-written dollar amounts, mostly five and
six figure sums. The dead man’s brother was contacted and he identified the corpse
as Frank Nugan, a Sydney lawyer and banker. Assuming the death was suicide the
NSW police omitted to preserve the scene for scientific investigation.

Very shortly, doubts would grow over both the identification of the man in the
Mercedes and whether his death was suicide or murder. For the dead man, Frank
Nugan, was already the subject of a major investigation by the NSW Corporate
Affairs Commission. He was a director of the Nugan Hand Bank, a shadowy group
with high-level links to the US military and the CIA. Symbolising these links, a
business card of William Colby, a recently retired director of the CIA, was found in
the dead man’s wallet.

Frank Nugan’s business partner, Michael Hand, was in London with the Chairman
of the Board of the Nugan Hand Bank, Admiral Earl Yates, talking to officials of the
Foreign Office about a scheme to resettle Hmong refugees in the Caribbean, when
Ken Nugan rang to inform them of Frank Nugan’s death. According to Ken Nugan,
Hand responded to the news of the death of his partner with the words ‘The little
fucker! He has gone and got out of this mess and left me to clean it up.’

Which is precisely what Michael Hand did. He made his excuses to the Foreign
Office and flew back to Australia with Admiral Yates on the evening of 27 January
1980. When Admiral Yates and Hand arrived at Sydney airport they were met by
Bernie Houghton, the head of the bank’s Saudi Arabia operation, Michael Moloney,
Houghton’s solicitor, and a Nugan Hand principal, Jerry Gilder. En route to the
Nugan Hand offices at 55 Macquarie Street, Hand learned that Frank Nugan had
stolen $3 million from Nugan Hand Ltd. The office itself was bedlam. The phones
kept ringing with depositors wanting their money back. It was a time of chaos and
shell-shock, when grown men like George Shaw were crying.

When Jerry Gilder suggested that company operations be suspended, Hand
erupted with a twenty minute tirade on the dangers of such a move. Hand said he had
received several death threats and that he expected to be killed ‘in the next twenty


four hours’. He warned Gilder ‘Your picture is well-known in South East Asia. You
should fear for your life too’. Hand threatened the others, if they did not ‘co-operate’
with him they would finish up in ‘lead boots or concrete shoes’ and their wives
would be ‘delivered to you in pieces’.18

On the Thursday following Nugan’s death, Gilder, Michael Hand, Admiral Yates
and Michael Moloney went through Nugan’s office. Some records were destroyed
while others were packed into cartonnes to be removed to safer locations. The files
that were destroyed could have identified clients of Nugan Hand’s overseas
operations i.e. the entire drug smuggling network.

The records Hand was most interested in were in the book where Nugan had
recorded ‘off ledger’ transactions, used for the purpose of keeping black money
records anonymous to the authorities. Frank Nugan’s off-ledger would have revealed
the most intimate business secrets of the CIA, their anti-Communist network and the
drug trade in Australia. Two green tin trunks were removed from Frank Nugan’s

During the following months, Michael Hand continued to ‘clean up the mess’ left
by the death of his partner. In the process he destroyed records and files; he lied to
creditors and the staff; he gave false evidence to the coronial inquiry into Frank
Nugan’s death; and he lied to the investigating officers of the New South Wales
Corporate Affairs Commission. It was a bravura performance and, at the end of it,
Michael Hand, man of mystery, topped it all by completely and utterly disappearing.

With the assistance of a friend of Bernie Houghton’s called Bob Gehring, Hand
obtained the birth certificate of one of Gehring’s employees, Alan Winter. In May
1980, an ex-military associate who used the code-name ‘Charlie’ (subsequently
revealed to be James Oswald Spencer, a former member of the US Special Forces
and ex-CIA operative who had served with Hand in Vietnam) came to Australia to
assist Hand to escape.

‘Charlie’ arranged for a passport photo of Hand to be taken showing him with
glasses, a false, goatee beard, and a moustache. Hand completed the passport
application in the name of Alan Winter, then caught the train to Brisbane, where he
departed Australia on 14 June 1980. Michael Hand had his new face and a new
passport. Though they declared him to be ‘one of the most wanted men on the
planet’, somehow the US and Australian authorities never found him. Michael Hand
simply vanished.


Chapter 28

The Secret Accounts

Like the size of the plantation at Coleambally, the secret accounts at the Nugan
Group were an important clue that escaped the scrutiny of those investigating the
Mackay murder. The accounts were never given to the Woodward royal
commission, nor to the Joint Task Force; instead they wound up with the Corporate
Affairs Commission, who used them to prosecute the Nugan brothers for fraud.
Although the Nugan brothers never came up with a convincing explanation for the
accounts, the accounts were probably not fraudulent. Instead, they were legitimate
payments to growers of an illigitimate crop.

The secret accounts operated through ledger cards held in an inside office at the
Nugan Group packing shed. They were in three name: Rose, Sergi, and Trimboli,
and were for hundreds of thousands of dollars. The accounts ran from May 1973
until their discovery in 1977, and they co-incided with Griffith’s marijuana growing
years when members of the Trimboli and Sergi families were involved in the
growing of large marijuana plantations around Griffith. The Nugans argued that the
secret accounts were a way of paying cash to growers of legal crops, but such secret
accounts would also be useful to pay growers for illegal crops.

At his trial, Coombs, the Crown Prosecutor, accused Ken Nugan of devising a
system of bogus cash payments to growers. This system, Coombs said, became the
vehicle for a systematic way to misapply in various ways large sums of the public
company’s money. Although Ken Nugan had promised to fight these ‘scurrilous
accusations’ all the way, he pleaded guilty in 1982 to three charges of
misappropriating $11,700 from the Nugan Group. He was sentenced to six months
jail, and released three months later.

I believe the secret accounts were a lot more than the petty fraud that Ken Nugan
pleaded guilty to. After the size of Coleambally, they were the second most
important clue to the murder of Donald Mackay, who was murdered just after the
accounts were discovered. The secret accounts were evidence that Frank Nugan was
buying marijuana from the growers in Griffith, misusing the considerable resources
of his family company to wholesale an illicit vegetable. They were the smoking gun
that tied Frank Nugan to Coleambally.

After the death of his brother and the unravelling of the Nugan Hand Bank, Ken
Nugan tried to distance the Nugan Group from the smell of Nugan Hand. In a letter


to Nugan Group shareholders, written shortly after the well-publicised inquest into
his brother’s death, Ken Nugan lamented the way the media had ‘confused the
Nugan Group Ltd. with the Nugan Hand Ltd. of which Mr Frank Nugan was
chairman.’ Ken Nugan declared that neither he, nor the Nugan Group, nor any of its
subsidiaries held an interest in Nugan Hand. ‘Likewise Nugan Hand Ltd. had never
been a shareholder in the Nugan Group.’ But he had to admit that his brother had
lent the Nugan Group large amounts of money ‘to assist with the company’s growth
as a supplement to its bank overdraft facility.’ Ken Nugan insisted these ‘loans’ were
strictly ‘commercial’.1

In his report, Justice Stewart described the extent of these ‘commercial’ loans and
the convoluted way Frank Nugan sent the loan money round and round and round in
the Nugan Hand laundry.

By 31 January 1979 the traceable net movement of funds from the Nugan
Hand Ltd. to the Nugan Fruit Group was $307,000. The funds were moved
through various companies in the Nugan Hand Group before reaching the
ultimate recipient so as to distance Mr Nugan from the misapplication of
Nugan Hand funds. In removing these funds from the Nugan Hand Ltd. Mr
Nugan often employed a convoluted method of transferring funds.2

If these ‘loans’ were commercial as Ken Nugan claimed, why would Frank
Nugan try to disguise the source of the funds through such intricate financial

From the size of Coleambally, we deduced that it was destined for the U.S.
market. We can now show that there was a secret pipeline for funds to flow from the
U.S. Mafia to the growers of Griffith via Harry Wainwright’s account at Nugan
Hand, through Frank Nugan’s unorthodox ‘loans’ to the Nugan Group, and finally
via the secret accounts to the Griffith growers. And we know that there was
movement of money along this hidden pipeline, apparently from the U.S. Mafia, at
the time of Coleambally.

As well as the alleged loan money, Nugan Hand funded the Nugan brother’s legal
defence in relation to the Nugan Group conspiracy charges, which cost over $1
million, and Nugan Hand paid for Fred Krahe’s investigations. Again, why would
Frank Nugan do this if the Nugan Group and Nugan Hand were as separate as Ken
Nugan maintained?

To further distance the Nugan Group from his brother, Ken Nugan emphasised
that Frank Nugan was a director of the Nugan Group for only a short time. The
Nugan Group Ltd was incorporated on 20 February 1973 with Ken Nugan and KR
Reed as directors. Four new directors were appointed on 12 July 1973, including
Frank Nugan. Frank Nugan resigned as a director on 19 April 1974. But Frank
Nugan’s interest in the Nugan Group went beyond being a director. He was a major


shareholder, a son of the founder, brother of the managing director, and unofficial
‘bank’ to the group. Again, there was a notable coincidence between the period
when organised marijuana growing began in Griffith and the time when Frank
Nugan was a director of the Nugan Group.

Just as the secret accounts played a key role in the murder of Donald Mackay, the
secret accounts were part of the reason behind the suicide of Frank Nugan who was
facing trial over the accounts, and was threatened with disgrace and dishonour.

There were other reasons. The auditors of the Nugan Hand Bank had uncovered
some of Frank Nugan’s deceits and were refusing to accept the books. One of the
hazards of running a black bank is that you rip off your clients at your peril. As Mike
Hand observed, Nugan Hand clients were the kind of people liable to cut up your
wife and send you the pieces. For Frank Nugan, the bravado with the rifle near
Lithgow proved preferable.

So what became of the secret accounts?

Since they were important evidence against Ken Nugan, I attempted to trace them
via the records of Ken Nugan’s trial. However, after a long chase through the
bureaucracy, the NSW Supreme Court informed me that the files on the trial of Ken
Nugan couldn’t be found.

The Man Who Knew Too Much

Griffith locals believed that Donald Mackay was killed either because he ‘knew too
much’, or as an act of revenge because he had been disclosed as the informant during
the Coleambally trial. Justice Woodward rejected the ‘knew too much’ theory for the
following reasons:

Adherents of the ‘knew too much’ theory suffered something of a reverse
when homicide investigators were unable to discover, either amongst
Mackay’s family or his closest associates, the faintest clue to suggest the sort
of information that would drive the subject of it to kill to prevent exposure. Mr
Mackay had made no secret of the names of the people he believed were
engaged in marijuana cultivation, in fact their identity was common
knowledge. The proposition that he might have become aware of, and was
about to reveal to the authorites, the location of another large cannabis crop,
was hardly feasible in mid-winter.3

So Woodward concluded that revenge was the motive for the murder. In
Woodward’s view, the Griffith ‘Mafia’ believed they could murder Donald Mackay
and carry on life as usual, free from further law enforcement problems. Of course,
this is not what happened. The Mackay murder galvanised the community and the
Griffith operation was closed down, and the ‘heat’ of Woodward’s Royal
Commission was applied to the Trimbole, Barbaro and Sergi families, who were


subjected to an inquisitorial examination of their finances, friendships, relations and

The secret accounts at the Nugan Group allow us to revive the ‘knew too much’
theory. The suggestion is that shortly after the secret accounts at the Nugan Group
became a public scandal, when the auditors refused to complete the company’s
books (i.e. in the first weeks of July 1977) someone who suspected that marijuana
growing might be the explanation behind the secret accounts went to Donald
Mackay with this information, but Fred Krahe or Frank Nugan learned of this. As we
have seen, Frank Nugan had many reasons to kill to prevent exposure, and in Fred
Krahe he had the perfect assassin. Up until this point, Donald Mackay knew only the
growers in their grass castles. Now he had a clue that led to the man with the
mansion in Vaucluse. As many suspected, Mackay was murdered to protect the
financiers and distributors, those higher up the chain of this enormous drug
smuggling network. In a twist worthy of a thriller, the boys from Homicide couldn’t
find the killer because he was the ex-head of Homicide.


Chapter 27

The Stewart Royal Commission into Nugan Hand

In the years following the death of Frank Nugan, the pressure for a royal commission
of inquiry into Nugan Hand built. There was considerable media interest in the story:
It was the heyday of investigative journalism, and Nugan Hand was a political
mystery whose trail led into a murky underworld of drugs and criminals and US
spies. On both sides of the Pacific, an impressive team of journalists was on the trail:
Marian Wilkinson, Brian Toohey and Wendy Bacon amongst the Australians, and
Jonathon Kwitny from the US. Their burrowings unearthed many links between
Nugan Hand, the CIA and a campaign of clandestine destabilisation of the Whitlam
government in 1975. Their articles, along with the revelations of investigators from
the NSW Corporate Affairs Commission and the Commonwealth-New South Wales
Joint Task Force, played a key role in the formation of the Stewart royal

In November 1982, the Joint Task Force report concluded that two of the
principals of Nugan Hand — Michael Hand and Bernie Houghton — were
associated with US intelligence, and that Nugan Hand ‘was well established in drug
activity’, and had ‘dabbled in the sales of military arms’. It noted that when Nugan
Hand ‘exploded’ on the international scene in 1977, ‘retired U.S. armed service
personnel and former U.S. government advisers dominated the positions created by

The NSW Corporate Affairs Commission Report on Nugan Hand was just as
sensational. A chapter of this report was repressed when the report was tabled. The
suppressed chapter consisted of interviews with Narcotics Bureau members about
the Bureau’s investigation of Nugan Hand and why that investigation was closed
down in March 1978. On oath, several former officers of the Narcotics Bureau made
allegations of political interference in the Bureau’s Nugan Hand investigation by the
Leader of the Country Party, Doug Anthony. The Nugan Hand issue exploded in the
Australian Parliament on 18 March 1982 when ALP leader Bill Hayden repeated
these allegations that Anthony had intervened on behalf of the Nugans, an allegation
the Deputy Prime Minister denied. A royal commission was now inevitable.2


Justice Donald Stewart — ‘crime fighter extraordinaire’ as the Sydney Morning
Herald billed him in 1998 — was the man selected by the conservative Fraser
government to chair the royal commission into the can of worms that was Nugan
Hand. A former policeman turned barrister, Stewart became a judge in 1979, and
spent four years in the early eighties chairing royal commissions into the Age tapes,
into the Mr Asia syndicate and the activities of the Nugan Hand Group. He left the
Supreme Court in 1986 to become the first head of the National Crimes Authority
(NCA); an appointment criticised by Australia’s foremost investigative journalist,
Brian Toohey, who described Stewart as ‘gullible’.

Many investigators regard Stewart’s report on the affairs of Nugan Hand as a
whitewash, not so much of Nugan and Hand (who Stewart conveniently blamed for
everything), but of the US government. According to Stewart, it is ‘the good soldier’
Hand who was the presiding genius of Nugan Hand, who — Stewart asks us to
believe — issued the orders to General Black, General Manor, General Cocke,
Admiral Yates, ex-CIA director William Colby and his old boss, Ted Shackley. Not
surprisingly, Wilkinson, Toohey, Kwitny, Bacon and McCoy felt that Stewart
inverted Nugan Hand’s real chain of command.

Marian Wilkinson commented that she felt Stewart set out to provide an analysis
of Nugan Hand that he was comfortable with, and ignored or dismissed evidence or
material that did not fit that analysis. Wilkinson wrote:

Stewart’s analysis - as far as it goes - is quite valid. In short, he finds that the
Nugan Hand group was a classic fraud run by two corporate crooks who
inflated their accounts, rewrote their books, used paper money transfers to
disguise their deficiencies and simple ‘Ponzi’ financial schemes to rob clients
in order to bankroll their activities and pay off other clients.

But this had all been disclosed two years ago by the NSW Corporate Affairs
Commission. What is extraordinary about Stewart’s report is that after two
years of investigations and hearings, he has produced not one new significant
insight or piece of evidence about Nugan Hand.3

In The Crimes of Patriots, US author Jonathon Kwitny described Stewart’s failure
to solve the Nugan Hand mystery as ‘predictable’, given that Stewart rejected the
help of investigators like Geoffrey Nicholson of the Corporate Affairs Commission
and Clive Small of the Joint Task Force ‘who had carried the ball halfway downfield
and knew the yardage still to be covered. Stewart preferred his own neophyte staff’
wrote Kwitny:

Even so, the thoroughness of the failure was astonishing. There was an
almost total lack of investigative effort to resolve major issues raised by
previous investigations ... Stewart’s report was full of elementary errors. Mike
Hand was credited with a degree from Syracuse University he never got. Ed
Wilson, the merchant of death, was identified as an U.S. Congressman.
General Black, who had been dead two years, was described as “currently
engaged as a consultant.” ... More important was the whitewashing of various


CIA connections. Long-identified CIA operatives like Ricardo Chavez were
referred to without identification, as if they were ordinary businessman. Dale
Holmgren was said to have “managed all in-flight services for a group named
Civil Air Transport,” without any indication that Civil Air Transport was a wholly
owned proprietary company of the CIA. William Colby was said to have gone
to Vietnam for the State Department with the rank of ambassador; no doubt
that was an effective cover for his real work in the 1960s, but to maintain that
cover story in print in light of what is now known is absurd.4

Like Kwitny, Marian Wilkinson and Brian Toohey pointed out the lengths
Stewart’s report went to undermine or ignore the evidence already collected by
previous investigators. Stewart concluded that the allegations about drug trafficking
were not correct ‘except to the extent that drug funds were being deposited with the .
. . group’. Stewart’s argument that Nugan Hand were not guilty of drug trafficking,
but only facilitated drug trafficking, was technically correct in the sense that it was
the Nugan Hand Bank’s clients (Murray Riley, the Mr Asia gang, the drug clients of
Andrew Lowe and George Shaw, etc.) who were the drug traffickers, while the
Nugan Hand Bank were simply the financiers of the drug trade. But this was a purely
semantic quibble, and even to achieve this Stewart had to rule out the evidence of
Andrew Lowe and Neil Evans — the best witnesses on Nugan Hand’s drug
involvement — because he considered them ‘unreliable’. Indeed, the basis of
Stewart’s whitewash was the old judicial trick of discrediting the inconvenient

Andrew Wellington Lowe, the witness referred to as ‘Mr B’ by Stewart, was
undoubtedly the most inconvenient witness of all. Born in Sydney of Chinese
parents in 1943, Lowe became extensively involved in the gambling casinos of
Sydney and the heroin business. Introduced to Nugan and Hand via George Shaw, he
was employed by Nugan Hand around the middle of 1974 to recruit Chinese
restaurateurs and businessmen for the bank. Like many dealers, Lowe was also an
informer for Dennis Kelly, a member of the Sydney Narcotics Bureau.

On 3 May 1977, Kelly opened a Nugan Hand file at the Sydney office of the
Bureau with the information supplied by Lowe that there were two American
merchant bankers named Mr FJ Nugan and Michael Hand who were ‘bigger than
anything you have seen in the heroin game and are said to be part of an American
Security Organisation.... If you caught these blokes, all hell would break loose.’
Lowe said that Hand was an ex-Green Beret and that he was acting on behalf of the
CIA. After the Narcotics Bureau investigation into Nugan Hand was closed down in
March 1978, Lowe supplied Kelly with the information that the investigation was
killed because ‘there was a bribe of $150,000 and that Wal Fife [the Country Party
minister with responsibility for the Bureau], Doug Anthony [leader of the Country
Party and Deputy Prime Minister] and Sullivan [Country Party member for the


Riverina] were involved’. It was this allegation of Lowe’s that led many disgruntled
Narcotics Bureau officers to believe Doug Anthony had helped kill the Narcotics
Bureau investigation.

Pressed by Stewart, Lowe admitted that the Anthony information was purely
hearsay. But, like a lot of Lowe’s gossip, the source was impeccable — Lowe said
the story came from Brian Alexander, law clerk and legal representative for the Mr
Asia gang and Ken Nugan. Brian Alexander himself was not available to corroborate
Lowe’s story. Another ‘man who knew too much’, Alexander disappeared
mysteriously in 1981, another victim of ‘the time of murder’.

The evidence of John William Sullivan (Country Party member for Riverina 1974
-1977) largely corroborated Lowe’s story. Sullivan remembered being approached
by Ken Nugan and he remembered Nugan asking him to ‘see if you can get Doug
Anthony to help get the Corporate Affairs Commission off my back’. Sullivan raised
the matter with Doug Anthony who said he would try and do what he could. On
another occasion (November 1977) Sullivan got a message to visit Ken Nugan at his
office in Griffith. Nugan asked him if he needed money for his campaign funds and
produced a large chequebook and asked Sullivan to name a figure. Sullivan (who
said he made a point of not accepting money under any circumstances) told Nugan to
contact the campaign finance committee chairman. Since this was all that Ken
Nugan wanted to see him about, Sullivan was suspicious. Returning home, he told
his wife, ‘I think I may have been offered a bribe’.5

Deputy Prime Minister Doug Anthony’s evidence was littered with phrases like ‘I
do not remember’ and ‘I do not recollect’, but he confirmed the substance of
Sullivan’s story. He had written a letter to the New Zealand government for Ken
Nugan about the role of the New Zealand Insurance in the Nugan Group company
dispute. Although asked to produce a copy of this letter, Anthony lamely replied. ‘I
have not got it. I have looked for it, but all my records that far back have gone.’ With
characteristic deference to the powerful, Stewart failed to press the Deputy Prime
Minister on this or other matters.6

In effect, Stewart’s investigation of Lowe’s claims about Doug Anthony and the
alleged bribe was further confirmation of the reliability of Lowe’s ‘gossip’. The
substance of Lowe’s allegation were:

(i) It was intended that an investigation by a law enforcement body into the Nugan
Hand group be stopped. Admittedly Lowe confused the Nugan Hand Bank with the
Nugan Group, but this is an easy mistake to make and, given the way money
surreptitiously flowed between the two groups, may not really be a mistake at all.

(ii) There was to be an approach to the politicians named by Lowe.

(iii) There was to be a payment of money in return for this influence.


(iv) Mr Ken Nugan was involved as ‘he had the necessary connections’.

It must be to Lowe’s credit that all seemed to be true, though without Brian
Alexander any case against Doug Anthony was simply hearsay. Yet Stewart’s view
of Lowe’s evidence was that it was ‘improbable’ and unbelievable.7

However, no such fate befell Admiral Yates or William Colby and one has to ask
how Stewart could regard Admiral Yates as a witness with any credit at all. As
Marian Wilkinson wrote:

This was the same Admiral Yates who for over three years was associated
with an organisation that Stewart’s report had found utterly fraudulent from its
conception. This is the same Yates who, according to court evidence, was
present when the Nugan Hand documents were destroyed or removed from
the group’s office after Frank Nugan’s death in January 1980. This is the
same Admiral Yates who ... Stewart admits signed false accounting records
for the bank in the Cayman Islands.8

Stewart’s conclusion that there was no evidence of links with the CIA was
headlined in Murdoch’s Australian as ‘CIA Link Disproved’. As Brian Toohey
commented in the National Times: ‘Far from being disproved, the extent of the links
was not even investigated by Justice Stewart in any normal sense of the world.’

Toohey commented:
Although it cost $3.5 million and took more than 1,200 pages to make its final
two-volume report, the Stewart royal commission has provided remarkably
little new material about the collapsed banking group. 9

Stewart’s main investigation was to travel to the US to interview seven Americans
including Admiral Yates, William Colby and General Black. To a man, all of them
denied CIA involvement in Nugan Hand, claiming it would be foolish for the CIA to
get involved with such a shonky group as Nugan Hand. In his report, Stewart
repeated these arguments. Ironically, all of these men had worked for Nugan Hand.
It never occurred to Stewart to ask them why, if Nugan Hand was such a transparent
fraud, they became so intimately involved with the group.

Stewart asked rhetorically: ‘For what conceivable reason would a powerful
agency of the United States government use or allow itself to be used by the Nugan
Hand group or its principals?’, as if this question automatically answered itself in the
negative. As Brian Toohey pointed out all this reveals is Stewart’s ignorance of the
CIA, which has been caught up in all sorts of bizarre schemes, ranging from trying
to develop a powder to make Fidel Castro’s beard fall off, to getting psychics to read
the minds of politburo members.

Likewise, the CIA has made extensive use of front companies with far from
savoury reputations. It is precisely the fly-by-night type of organisation, ideal for
official denial, which is often used by the CIA to shift money or to provide cover for
its agents. Stewart’s argument about powerful agencies of the US government


automatically shying away from Nugan Hand does not sit easily with the fact that
many former senior members of these organisations (as he well knew) worked for
the bank.

Brian Toohey called Stewart gullible and said his lack of investigative skills
assumed a particular importance since Stewart would be the first head of the NCA.
Sadly for the future quality of NCA (National Crimes Authority) work it seems
that the police and the NSW Corporate Affairs Commission were able to carry
out far more impressive investigations drawing on much slimmer resources
than the NCA chairman.10

As Toohey concluded: ‘It does not give grounds for public confidence in
Stewart’s investigative skills as head of the NCA.’11


Chapter 28

Framing Jimmy Bazley

From the beginning of their investigations, NSW detectives had been determined to
get the ‘Italian’ marijuana growers of Griffith for the murder of Donald Mackay. As
novelist and Bulletin journalist Robert Drewe recorded in 1977:
Before the special police investigation assisting the current New South Wales
Royal Commission into drug trafficking left for the town of Griffith they were
given a top-level briefing on the subject of marijuana and Italians.

The following instructions were given: “Remember you are fighting for
democracy” and, “Do to them what we did in the desert!”

Those remarks may say a lot about the prejudice of certain Australian

This prejudice against the Italian community demonstrated by the Woodward
Royal Commission and its investigators was also commented on by Alfred McCoy,
who contrasted it with the lenient treatment given to Murray Riley.
Even the smallest of Griffith’s Calabrian marijuana growers were subjected to
an almost inquisitorial examination of their finances, friendships, relations and
antecedents. But Murray S. Riley, a former N.S.W. police sergeant and nativeborn
Australian, was courteously exempted from public examination or the
publication of embarrassing background details, even though he is currently
serving a ten-year prison sentence for his role as the principal in the illegal
importation of $46 million of Thai cannabis in 1978.

During his royal commission, Justice Moffitt had commented that the NSW
police treated Murray Riley ‘with undue favour’. This special treatment was
continued by the police attached to the Woodward royal commission. Riley’s
associate Bela Csidei got even more favourable treatment: the report on him was
suppressed. By downplaying Riley and Csidei, Woodward was able to ignore the US
connection, another aspect McCoy noted:
The Commissioner’s unexplained dismissal of any American organised crime
involvement in Australia’s drug trade does little to explain the police
surveillance of Riley’s alleged San Francisco meetings with known American
crime personalities in the month prior to his arrest.2

By this selective treatment, the NSW police nudged the Woodward royal
commission to its farcical conclusion that a secret Italian society controlled the drug


trade in Australia, despite the apparently superior claims for ‘market leader’ that
could be made for Murray Riley and friends. Woodward also concluded that the
same group were ‘probably’ responsible for the murder of Mackay. Once this
accusation was made, it proved self-fulfilling. Because the likely candidates —
Riley, Nugan and company — were protected, the scene was set for a classic
miscarriage of justice. A ‘police crop’, a bungled ‘sting’, a possible ‘plant’ and the
‘snitch’ provisions recommended by Williams were the improbable ingredients
which would produce ‘the Supergrass’.

The police crop was a huge marijuana plantation at Bungendore, sanctioned by
officers of the NSW and Federal police as an elaborate sting to set up the Italians.
However, as a result of police bungling or corruption, thousands of marijuana plants
from this police crop found their way to the street.

It was with the aim of purchasing two hundred pounds of this pot that Tony
Barbaro drove to Canberra in a hired van on 31 March 1982. Gianfranco Tizzoni
drove along as escort in his gold coloured Mercedes. As the car suggests, Tizzoni
was a wealthy man who got his start in the drug trade via his mate Robert Trimbole;
he was Trimbole’s Melbourne distributor. Bob Trimbole was a major player in
Griffith’s marijuana trade and, like many crime figures, he used a number of aliases;
during the early 1970s, he was chiefly known as Bruno Trimboli. The various
spelling of his surname created confusion; and this confusion was exactly what
Bob/Bruno Trimbole/Trimboli intended.

Unknown to Tizzoni and Barbaro, the pot they were buying was another sting. As
they drove back to Melbourne, they were followed and both cars were stopped. The
Victorian police version is that they searched Tizzoni’s Mercedes at 8 pm and found
twenty pounds of pot in the boot. Tizzoni said they planted the pot on him.
Whatever the truth, Tizzoni was trapped, facing a very serious drug trafficking
charge. He tried to bribe his way out and, when this didn’t work, he offered to
inform. This is what the Victorian police wanted and they suspended Tizzoni’s court
appearances, but continued to use the threat of prosecution to maintain his ‘cooperation’.
Tizzoni’s initial information resulted in snaring Det Sgt William Harris
as a co-conspirator in a hash importation scheme worth $8.5 million. Tizzoni then
nominated James Frederick Bazley, a small-time Victorian criminal, as an
accomplice in a robbery performed by Tizzoni’s gang. The police, however, wanted
more and Tizzoni found himself caught in the police game of snitch, playing the
dangerous and hated role of the ‘dog’, the informer, the ‘grass’.
Jimmy Bazley was a painter and docker, a small-time crim who was dubbed ‘the
Maxwell Smart of bank robbers’ after one particularly unsuccessful bank robbery
where he was caught by a one-legged man. After his arrest, Bazley escaped from


police custody. He was a man ‘on the lam’, a fugitive from justice, hiding his true
identity and, consequently, very easy to frame. Bazley became the ‘fall guy’ for
Tizzoni who nominated him for three of the most infamous murders of the seventies.
Firstly, Tizzoni nominated Bazley as the murderer of Douglas and Isabel Wilson,
two drug couriers for Terry Clark, who had informed on the Mr Asia network to the
Narcotics Bureau and the Queensland police and who were murdered as a result.
Later, Tizzoni nominated Jimmy Bazley as the murderer of Donald Mackay. It was
this information that earned Tizzoni the epithet of ‘the Supergrass’.

On June the first 1984, Tizzoni gave the Victorian police his first version of the
murder of Donald Mackay. In this version, Tizzoni said that he attended a meeting at
Tony Sergi’s house in Griffith in May 1977 to discuss the ‘Mackay problem’.
Besides Tizzoni, the meeting consisted of Bob Trimbole, Tony Sergi and Tony
Barbaro. While the others proposed killing Mackay Calabrian-style with a shotgun,
Tizzoni said that he was concerned with the consequence and argued for other
solutions, such as buying Mackay off, or compromising him with a woman.
Execution, he argued, should only be used as a last resort. But the meeting decided
on execution and Bob Trimbole approached Tizzoni to find a Melbourne hit man to
do the job. The hit man was Tizzoni’s favourite target, James Frederick Bazley, who
Tizzoni had already nominated for the murders of Douglas and Isabel Wilson. The
Victorian police were obviously delighted with this story — they had solved
Australia’s most famous murder and they had three of Woodward’s principals, Tony
Sergi, Tony Barbaro and Bob Trimbole, in the frame!
However, within 24 hours, Tizzoni changed his story substantially. According to
the second version, Bob Trimbole approached Tizzoni to get the hit man in
Melbourne. Tizzoni said the meeting involving Bob Trimbole, Tony Sergi and Tony
Barbaro, which he had described in such dramatic detail, never occurred. At
Bazley’s trial, Tizzoni agreed that his first story was ‘a pack of lies’.3
Tizzoni’s second version was far less pleasing to the police. The Woodward royal
commission had put Tony Sergi and Tony Barbaro in the frame, and Carl Mengler,
who led the Stewart commission inquiry, put enormous pressure on Tizzoni to
change his mind and support his first version. Tizzoni believed he had cut a deal
with the police to give him immunity from prosecution by informing. Nonetheless,
Mengler — who has never hidden his belief in the truthfulness of Tizzoni’s first
statement — refused all deals and went ahead and prosecuted Tizzoni for conspiracy
to murder Donald Mackay. Tizzoni was so outraged by what he regarded as a blatant
act of betrayal that he plotted to kill Mengler. Despite Mengler’s pressure, Tizzoni
steadfastly refused to change his story back.
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There must be considerable skepticism about Tizzoni’s story, simply because he
told two. In my eyes, this makes Tizzoni — the Supergrass — a transparent
fabricator. He was a man with every reason to lie. He was trying to get off very
serious drug charges, and the Victorian police led him to believe he could achieve
this by becoming an informer. He was trying desperately to give them what they
wanted to gain immunity from prosecution without endangering himself too much.
Mengler simply asked for far too much. Bazley was in prison, Trimbole had fled
overseas, but the Sergis and the Barbaros were still numerous, powerful, and free.
That is why the second version was the lie Tizzoni stuck by: it left only Trimbole
and Bazley — people who could not harm him — in the frame. Tizzoni expected
immunity for himself. That he didn’t get it was entirely due to what Tizzoni saw as
Mengler’s betrayal. Mengler put enormous pressure on Tizzoni to change his story
back. He had Tizzoni trapped so badly that Tizzoni plotted to kill him as a way out.
In his own eyes, Mengler was an honest cop simply trying to get the guilty Tony
Sergi and Tony Barbaro in the frame: but there has to be doubts about his methods,
because you could just as easily see Mengler as trying his hardest to frame Tony
Sergi and Tony Barbaro, as well as James Bazley. If the witnesses are under such
pressure from the police, how can their stories be trusted?
Inspector Mengler, who passionately believed in Tizzoni version one, nonetheless
used Tizzoni version two to successfully prosecute James Bazley, George Joseph
and Gianfranco Tizzoni for conspiracy to murder Donald Mackay.
James Frederick Bazley, the Maxwell Smart of bank robbers, denied he was the
hit man, but he was a petty crim who looked good in the frame. Bazley was charged
with the murder of Douglas and Isabel Wilson and with conspiracy to murder of
Donald Mackay. (He could not be tried for the murder of Mackay which occurred
outside Victoria.) Bazley was also charged with his role in a robbery at
Greensborough that he did with Tizzoni’s gang, which he attempted to deny along
with the murder charges. While Bazley pleaded not guilty, Tizzoni and his gang all
pleaded guilty, receiving indemnities and generous treatment for confessing to their
part in ‘the conspiracy to murder’.
Although he later confessed to his role in the Greensborough robbery, James
Bazely always maintained that he didn’t kill Mackay or the Wilsons. As a
professional criminal, Bazley (who boasted that he made $130,000 from the
Greensborough robbery) was affronted by the meagre amount ($10,000) he was
supposed to have earned for each of the three ‘hits’: ‘If it wasn’t so serious, it would
be laughable. Talk about a bargain-basement job!’
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Bazley was also scornful of the evidence that he used the same gun, a .22 calibre,
French-made Unique pistol, on three different criminal occasions: in the
Greensborough robbery as well as to kill Donald Mackay and the Wilsons.
I was an armed robber. A professional. Picking up a new pistol was as easy
as walking down the street. And I am supposed to have used the same one
for more than two years, the one used in one of the hottest murders in recent
Australian history! It would be farcical if it wasn’t so serious for me. Even the
greenest rookie policemen would know that the professional criminal uses
‘clean’ guns. They get rid of the ‘dirty’ one as soon as they have used it, in
case they are caught the next time and it implicates them in previous crimes.
Whoever killed Donald Mackay would have got rid of the gun immediately.
Like the body, it will never be found. I wish it would be.4
So why then did Tizzoni frame him?
I was available. I was a criminal, a wanted man on the run; I stayed out of
public places and stuck to my family and few friends. I wouldn’t have any
independent alibis, Tizzoni didn’t like me, and vice-versa, and George Joseph
was desperate to stay out of Jika.5
Bazley believed he knew who killed Donald Mackay:
Detective-Sergeant Fred Krahe of the Sydney police killed Donald Mackay.
Next to Ray Kelly, Krahe was the most dangerous policeman in NSW — and
that’s saying something. He was in Griffith the night Donald Mackay
disappeared and he was the one who first started the rumors about Mackay
running off with a woman. He was tied up with the Griffith drug people, and
others, and he was well known to be available for killings if you could afford
the price. Allison Dine, Terence Clark’s girlfriend, gave evidence on oath that
he [Clark] was prepared to pay $250,000 to have Douglas and Isabel Wilson
killed. Who do you think ‘the Family’ would have employed, Krahe or me?
Who do you think would have been safer from arrest by the NSW police and
resulting embarrassment to his employers? Why do you think Superintendent
Parrington was so confident I wasn’t involved? Why do you think that there
was such a high-level police and political cover-up of what had happened in
Griffith? The dogs have been barking for years that a NSW policeman killed
Donald Mackay. That policeman was Fred Krahe.6
It is hard to accept ‘the Maxwell Smart of bank robbers’ as the murderer of
Donald Mackay. After all, Jimmy Bazley was not a hit man, and there are no
allegations that he killed anyone before 1977; Jimmy Bazley jumped counters, and
with not much success, either. Yet the murder of Donald Mackay was an almost
perfect hit, the work of a master like Krahe, not some bumbling neophyte. Tizzoni,
the Supergrass, was a witness with little credibility at all, an admitted liar, who had
every reason to lie.
More importantly, Tizzoni’s wealth and status were consistent with someone who
was an Australian cannabis wholesaler, not an international drug trafficker; ie he was
rich enough to be a big dealer in Melbourne, but the sixty tonnes of Coleambally
was well beyond his ability. Yet he was Trimbole’s major distributor. Trimbole may
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well have been involved with the Coleambally plantation, but not as owner. It is the
extraordinary size of Coleambally that is the biggest clue to the murderer of Donald
Mackay and Tizzoni offers us no explanation for this. Size tells us that Coleambally
was grown for the U.S. market, and that those who killed Mackay were major
players in U.S. organised crime. In Tizzoni’s version, there are no Americans.
However, the jury believed him.
In this highly dubious manner, the Mackay murder was ‘solved’ and Justice
Woodward was proven right. This is the official version of the murder of Donald
Mackay to be found in the newspaper articles and TV reports, and books like
Bottom’s Shadow Of Shame and Moor’s Crims in Grass Castles (though Bottom’s
The Godfather in Australia suggests a scenario similar to mine).
I, of course, hold the heretical view that the murder of Donald Mackay was
authorised by Frank Nugan and organised by Fred Krahe. Consistent with this
alternative reading of the murder of Donald Mackay, Tizzoni’s story seems invented,
and Jimmy Bazley seems to be the victim of a classic miscarriage of justice; the sort
of miscarriage of justice that occurs time and again due to ‘snitch’ provisions.
Tizzoni was sentenced to 8 years for his part in the conspiracy, but he served only
fourteen months before his release in February 1986. The Tax Office was after him
for $935,000, but he bargained it down, paying only a portion of what was
demanded. Allegedly hiding out from the Mafia, Tizzoni, the Supergrass, returned to
Italy, where he died in 1987, not even bothering to change his name. Jimmy Bazley
was released in January 2001.7
It was Justice Williams who recommended the use of indemnities to capture the
Mr Bigs of the drug trade. In the trial for the conspiracy to murder Donald Mackay,
Tizzoni, the Mr Big, got the indemnity and a few months jail, while Jimmy Bazley,
the ‘Mr Small’ he framed, got fifteen years.
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Chapter 29
On Seeing The Sydney
While the media in the seventies used the Woodward report to portray organised
crime in Australia, particularly the drug trade, as being dominated by an Italian
secret society, the story that the media avoided was of the Americanisation of
organised crime and the drug trade in Australia which began in Sydney during the R
and R years, and which culminated in the operations of Murray Riley and Nugan
Although this Americanisation of Sydney’s crime scene in the sixties and
seventies, its penetration by U.S. mobsters and the Mafia, went largely unnoticed by
Australian authorities, it formed the subject of books like Bob Bottom’s The
Godfather in Australia, Athol Moffitt’s A Quarter to Midnight and Alfred McCoy’s
Drug Traffic.
In Drug Traffic, McCoy questioned what lay behind this growing entanglement
between U.S. and Australian crime. While the Sydney milieu had much to learn from
the American Mafia, the reason for American syndicate interest in Australia were
more mysterious. McCoy believed that the affluence of Sydney’s gambling clubs has
made Australia a prime target of opportunity for American organised crime. Justice
Moffitt, on the other hand, suggested that a crackdown on organised crime in the
U.S. led to this move overseas by U.S. organised crime. I suggest an additional
motive: the idea pioneered by John Wesley Egan of re-routing the U.S. drug trade
via Sydney, the idea of the Sydney Connection.
Because this is what happened.
In combination with the secret war in Laos, the impact of U.S. R and R tours to
Sydney gave birth to a new alliance between U.S. and Australian organised crime
which developed into a trans-Pacific drug smuggling network, similar to John
Wesley Egan’s operation, but on a far grander scale. Although several figures in this
second Sydney Connection were jailed and convicted over individual crimes, the
pieces of their inter-connecting conspiracies were never put together. Despite the
millions spent on their royal commissions, neither Williams nor Stewart nor
Woodward saw the Sydney Connection.
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For Australian authorities in the seventies, the idea of Australian involvement in the
export of drugs to the U.S. market proved an almost unthinkable thought. Before the
Williams royal commission, several witnesses voiced suspicion that drugs,
particularly cannabis, were illegally exported from Australia, regularly and in
quantity. Others referred to the possibility of Australia being used for the
transshipment of drugs whose traditional routes had been disrupted by drug law
enforcement. Both Dr. B.A. Rexed, Executive Director of the United Nations Fund
for Drug Abuse, and historian, Dr. Alfred McCoy, warned of the potential of
Australia being used as a pipe-line for heroin to the U.S. following the recent
disruption of traditional heroin routes.
These experts were contradicted by the leaders of the Narcotics Bureau, including
Commander D. J. Mitchell, who stated that ‘the Bureau has come to accept, until the
contrary is shown, that the exportation of narcotics, while no doubt occurring, is a
matter of minor concern, and one which does not rate attention in its list of
priorities’.1 Commander Mitchell was backed in this assessment by Mr M.A. Besley,
the secretary of the Department of Business and Consumer Affairs (with
responsibility for the Narcotics Bureau) who argued that Australia’s geographical
position did not lend itself to exportation because it was remote from the major illicit
markets of Europe and the United States of America, but relatively close to drug
source countries in South-East Asia. ‘It is therefore more practical for the
international drug trafficker to obtain his supplies at the cheaper prices available in
source countries and import them directly to the market place and only have to face
the risk once of being detected’, secretary Besley declared.
According to the men in charge of the Narcotics Bureau, the idea of using
Australia for the transshipment of illicit drugs was impractical. Yet Australia was
used as a transshipment point, and the use of Australia for this purpose had clear
advantages, as Besley admitted:
Australia has been used for the transit of illicit drugs destined for either New
Zealand or the United States of America. The detected incidence of Australia
being used for this purpose is low. However, because of its proximity to
source countries within South-East Asia it does provide international
traffickers with the opportunity to lose the origin of consignment.2
Hiding the origin of consignment was the first advantage a shipment of drugs
from Asia gained by being transshipped through Sydney. The second advantage was
that Sydney was an unlikely source for large shipments of heroin or cannabis, so a
consignment from Sydney attracted far less attention than one from Asia. Far from
being impractical, the Sydney Connection was a clever deception.
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The idea that a surplus of Australian-produced cannabis was being exported to the
U.S. was similarly rejected by the head of the Narcotics Bureau, Harvey Bates, and
by secretary Besley who commented:
Most of these suggestions have been based on theories (local production is
greater than local needs) rather than on reliable intelligence.3
The reluctance of the Australian authorities to give any credence to claims of
drug export was the most important asset of all for the Sydney Connection, who
probably benefited more from the incompetence of the Narcotics Bureau than they
did from its corruption. In the Narcotic Bureau’s view, the export of narcotics from
Australia was a minor matter with no priority: ‘It can’t happen here!’ was almost the
motto of the Bureau, who failed to see the Sydney Connection, chiefly because they
were too complacent to look.
Of course, as the fate of the Narcotic Bureau’s investigation of the Nugan Hand
Bank showed, it went deeper than this. There were powerful forces working to
maintain the myth. Damaging investigations were closed down. Dangerous men like
Donald Mackay mysteriously disappeared.
The export theory itself was the big secret. Williams’ failure to see the Sydney
Connection was partly the influence of the Narcotics Bureau, and partly his own
inability to see that Australian cannabis production was well in excess of the
Australian market.
Once the export theory was grasped, all else followed. So my ‘Sydney
Connection’ resembled Bottom’s ‘San Francisco Connection’. Both were export
theories based on the observation that cannabis production in Australia seemed
greater than cannabis consumption. Both saw the obvious connections between
Murray Riley and his U.S. friends.
Seeing the Sydney Connection provided answers to many unanswered questions
about the Australian drug trade in the seventies:
Q: Who was responsible for the massive seizures of the era?
A: The second Sydney Connection: Murray Riley, Bela Csidei and Nugan Hand.
Q: Who provided the heroin for the heroin plague of 1976/77?
A: Chiefly Murray Riley and friends, along with the Mr Asia gang, who also used
Nugan Hand to transfer money illegally. Indeed, if you look at a graph of opiate
deaths for that era, you find that it measures the rise and fall of the Sydney
Connection with considerable precision.
Q: Who was behind the criminal takeover of the drug scene in 1976?
A: Although Woodward argued the Calabrians were the largest growing and
marketing operation in New South Wales, he was wrong about the marketing aspect.
Woodward’s Further Report, in which he investigated Murray Riley, demonstrated
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how central Murray Riley was to Sydney’s drug scene in the 1970s. It was the
friends of Murray Riley who dominated the drug trade after the criminal takeover.
Q: Who (or what) caused the marijuana drought?
A: Whoever ordered the murder of Donald Mackay. Other factors contributed,
such as the launch of the War on Drugs and the massive cannabis seizures, but it was
the Mackay murder, and the subsequent police investigations and royal
commissions, that created the drought.
Q: Who ordered the murder of Donald Mackay?
A: According to the revenge theory, the answer to this question lies in another
question: whoever ‘owned’ Coleambally. From the evidence of the secret accounts,
the size of Coleambally and Wainwright’s first deposit with Nugan Hand, I suggest
Coleambally belonged to the Riley/Wainwright/Nugan group.
If the man who knew too much theory is correct, this also suggests Frank Nugan.
Why? The answer lies in the secret accounts that the auditors found at the Nugan
Group. They would have connected Frank Nugan to Coleambally, if the code could
be broken. The code was not elaborate: the accounts were called Trimboli, Sergi,
and Rose. Although the names Sergi and Trimboli became widely identified with
Griffith’s marijuana trade after Justice Woodward’s 1979 report, in 1977 they were
not well known. However there is no doubt that the murdered man, Donald Mackay,
was capable of understanding that code.
The crisis over the secret accounts began on the first day of July, 1977, two weeks
before the murder, when the auditors refused to complete the Nugan Group accounts
for the financial year. It was then that Frank Nugan hired Fred Krahe. Four days
after the murder, four directors and the company secretary of the Nugan Group
resigned amidst an atmosphere of intimidation that continued until the removal of
the auditors at the notorious Nugan Group shareholders’ meeting. It is highly likely
that anyone suspecting the secret accounts might be for marijuana growing would
approach Donald Mackay, who would then know Frank Nugan was the real Mr Big
of Griffith. In knowing this, Donald Mackay would finally become ‘the man who
knew too much’.
Frank Nugan’s decision to have Mackay murdered was no doubt influenced by
his links with the U.S. spy community. In April, May and June 1977, the Australian
media and Parliament were awash with allegations of CIA activities in Australia,
caused by the allegations of Christopher Boyce and Gough Whitlam. In this climate,
any exposure of Frank Nugan as a drug dealer threatened to reveal his company’s
use as a conduit for funds to the conservative parties in Australia, and this
constituted an enormous threat to U.S. national security. For reasons of U.S.
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National Security, it would be necessary to terminate Mackay, with extreme
Q: Was there a plan to sell heroin by inducing a marijuana drought?
A: No. The Sydney Connection caused the heroin plague, but they sold pot as
well as heroin. Certainly, the Anoa’s cargo would have ended the Great Drought in
1978. Likewise it is difficult to see Euston, Coleambally and Bela Csidei’s crop as
attempts to create a marijuana drought. It is interesting to note that just before the
Mackay murder the Sydney Connection sourced alternative supplies of cannabis via
Thailand and Bela Csidei’s Northern Territory plantation, indicating that they
intended to move out of cannabis production in New South Wales, but not out of
The Export Theory Reconsidered
The export theory explains many mysteries of the Australian illicit drug trade. Why
have so many of the largest drug seizures in Australia had such a small impact on the
supply of illicit drugs in this country? Coleambally, Australia’s largest cannabis
bust, did not cause a cannabis drought in 1975-76, despite its enormous size. The
same is true of Australia’s largest heroin haul, the 400 kilos of heroin seized at a
beach south of Port Macquarie in October 1998, which was celebrated at the time
with much boasting and gloating by the Minister for Justice and Customs, Senator
Amanda Vanstone.
In her media release of October 14 1998, Vanstone stated that this massive heroin
bust had ‘a street value of over $300 M and represents something in the order of 8
million “hits”.’ In a table accompanying the media release, the three largest heroin
hauls of the past year were recorded both in weight and as an equivalent number of
hits. According to the minister’s estimates, these three busts amounted to over half a
tonne of heroin or more than ten million heroin hits.4
In her next media release ‘Heroin Busts Will Lower Supply’, the minister
thundered at critics who dared suggest that this record heroin seizure would have
only a minimal impact on Australia’s heroin market. ‘It is almost laughable to
suggest a haul of this magnitude will have only a limited impact on the quantity of
heroin on our streets’, Senator Vanstone declared. 5
Yet the critics were right. Even though Senator Vanstone and her police and
customs team calculated that they took ten million hits off the market, they had no
effect on heroin supply. For these years of massive heroin hauls coincided with
another heroin flood, with price low, purity high, and the number of opiate
overdoses (a good indicator of heroin usage) at record levels — 737 in 1998 and 958
in 1999.
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Why was the impact of this record haul so minimal?
The export theory can explain it very simply:
It was never intended for the Australian market.
The idea that this record haul might have been a transshipment to the larger US
market was not considered by the Australian authorities. The prevailing wisdom
remains that the export or transshipment of drugs via Australia is something that
‘can’t happen here’, even though it does.
Senator Vanstone estimated the street value of this record heroin shipment at
$300 million. This shows the magnitude of profits to be made at the trans-Pacific
level of the drug trade. Similarly if the 31 acres seized at Coleambally in 1975 was
valued in 1998 dollars, you would get a street-level figure of $600 million. Likewise,
John Wesley Egan’s ‘Corset Gang’ operation, estimated at US $22 million in 1966,
would not be too far below the $300 million range at 1998 prices and Murray Riley’s
consignment of buddha sticks on the Anoa in 1978 would be worth about $450
million in 1998 dollars. These figures give some idea of the size, duration and
profitability of the drug export trade. After weapons, illicit drugs are the second
biggest trade in the world and the USA is the major market. The annual trade in
illicit drugs in the USA is worth hundreds of billions of dollars.
Although the role of illicit drug exporter to the U.S. has been performed by
various individuals, its purpose has remained the same. While the USA has been
involved in a succession of wars in Asia, from Laos to Afghanistan, involving secret
drug armies, a number of Australians, generally ex-NSW detectives, have played the
role of transshipment agents, linking the US Mafia and these secret armies. It was a
‘patriotic’ role helping fund U.S. wars, organised with the help of US spies, and
Australia’s own political police, in the person of ex-NSW Special Branch detective,
John Wesley Egan, pioneered the role. For a succession of ex-NSW detectives from
Egan to Riley, it proved a patriotic and very profitable proposition.
The origin of the Sydney Connection during the Vietnam War years explains this
patriotic composition of the highest level of the Australian drug trade, described by
John Wesley Egan as being composed of CIA spies and serving or ex-members of
the NSW police. It was far more than a drug network; it was a covert arm of US
power, an anti-Communist conspiracy which used Australia as a link between its
Asian drug armies and the U.S. market, covertly funding US wars in Asia this way.
Consequently, it enjoyed enormous protection in every country where it operated.
Just as it got away with drug running, this network got away with murder: in
particular, the murder of Donald Mackay.
In this work I have pieced together the story of one Sydney Connection, the story
of Murray Riley and the Nugan Hand bank. My first inkling of this group came
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when I noticed that there were a cluster of seizures in the 1970s that were TOO BIG
for the Australian market. I also noticed that there was a similar cluster of massive
seizures circa 1996. I have never investigated this latter cluster, but my suspicions
are that it hides a more recent Sydney Connection. Though Mr Bigs come and go,
the Sydney Connection remains — a covert product of US imperialism, Pacific
geography and the sheer size of the US illicit drug market, which is one of the
biggest (and the most profitable) trades in the world.
Despite this, the idea that Australians might want to be part of such a lucrative
trade proved unthinkable to a succession of royal commissioners who investigated
the drug trade in Australia, the murder of Donald Mackay and the Nugan Hand
Bank, even though the Sydney Connection was central to all these.
Since the US is the country that has pushed for the worldwide institutionalisation
of the War on Drugs, it is an amazing act of duplicity that its covert intelligence
arms should be so heavily involved in the Pacific drug trade. However, duplicity is
the trade of spooks; and for the spies, whatever serves the aims of US power is good.
Morally, the spies justify their involvement in the drug trade, in Kwitny’s phrase, as
‘the crimes of patriots’. This is the duplicity that lies at the heart of the drug trade. It
is ‘the Joke’ on a global scale: Like John Wesley Egan or Murray Riley, that noble,
global drug cop, the USA, is bent.
The Evidential Gaps
There are still large gaps in the evidence concerning the trans-Pacific drug
trafficking of Riley and Nugan Hand that I have been unable to fill.
A major cause of this evidential gap is the unpublished first volume of the
Commonwealth New South Wales Police Joint Task Force report. The Joint Task
Force report was the major official investigation into Nugan Hand, Harry
Wainwright and Murray Riley, and the first volume of that report, which looked at
Bela Csidei, Harry Wainwright and the Wollogorang Station seizure, was never
released. Since Wainwright is alleged to be the go-between for the U.S. Mafia, the
evidence about him is crucial for proof of the Sydney Connection.
Another major contributor to the evidential gap surrounding the Sydney
Connection was the disappearance of the file on the trial of Ken Nugan. Whether this
was snafu or conspiracy, I cannot say. The information in this file may well be more
important than the Joint Task Force report. Not only would it provide evidence about
Fred Krahe in Griffith, this file may lead to the secret accounts of the Nugan Group.
I spent many months negotiating with the NSW Supreme Court, the Attorney
General’s department and the Premier’s department to gain access to the archival
depositions relating to Ken Nugan’s court case, always with the hope that these
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records would lead me to the secret accounts. The secret accounts are, I suspect, a
major clue: I believe Frank Nugan was prepared to murder to keep them hidden.
Although I realise that the secret accounts may prove disappointing — nothing more
than ledger cards with names and amounts of money I already know — I would have
liked to examine them to find out whether they contained dross or gold. However the
advice from the NSW Supreme Court was that the files relating to Ken Nugan’s trial
can not be located. I know of no other pathway to the secret accounts.
Michael Hand’s destruction of the Nugan Hand records was another cause of the
evidential gap. The disarray of the Nugan Hand files was certainly no snafu: it was a
deliberate conspiracy to hide evidence of wrongdoing. Likewise, the lies told by
Murray Riley and Michael Hand about the Nugan Hand/Riley relationship were
deceptions whose purpose was to prevent the revelation of some undisclosed
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Chapter 30
Midnight’s Child
The Birth of the National Crimes Authority
In the decade that followed the pioneering report into organised crime by Justice
Moffitt, organised crime, corruption and the drug trade were examined as never
before in Australia. As well as Justice Moffitt, Justice Woodward, Justice Williams
and Costigan QC led royal commissions, while Justice Stewart presided over three
separate royal commissions (into the Age tapes, the Mr Asia gang and into Nugan
Hand). Although their collective work was frequently flawed and fragmented, they
at least revealed the size of the problem.
Writing in 1984, at the time when the debate about how to combat organised
crime in Australia was reaching its climax, Bottom described the transformed face of
organised crime in Australia as a ‘two headed monster’.
In stark terms, organised crime in Australia has mushroomed into a twoheaded
monster . . . . . an underworld and an upperworld. No longer is it oldtime
back-street racketeering. Instead, it now reaches out into all facets of
society, with hardline criminals of the old underworld working hand in glove
with politicians, lawyers, accountants, bankers and businessmen in the
upperworld of high society.1
For men like Moffitt, Costigan and Bottom, the important question was: Could
this network of corruption that constituted this ‘upperworld’ of organised crime be
attacked before it took over Australia? The future looked very bleak. Moffitt entitled
his book on the debate about organised crime A Quarter To Midnight; while
Costigan gave Australia only five years unless his measures were followed.
What Costigan wanted was a permanent investigative agency, an ongoing royal
commission, to counter organised crime. ‘My experience over the past three years
has left me in no doubt that the problem of organised crime cannot be tackled unless
you invest in the one body, with all suitable protections, the power to monitor the
activities I have described’, he argued in 1984. 2
Costigan argued that organised crime was widespread in Australia. It was a major
industry with turnover measured in the hundreds of millions and probably in billions
of dollars. It was impossible to investigate its activities simply in one state or
territory. As well, there were well-defined links with overseas organisations. The
startling growth of organised crime represented a major threat to the civil liberties of
Marijuana Australiana
‘If criminal organisations are allowed to operate unhindered, the citizens of this
country will suffer a major loss of freedom. The right to remain free of the impact of
organised crime, and the right to have this infringement controlled , are just as
legitimate civil liberties’, argued Costigan.3

While writers like Bottom and Moffitt championed Costigan’s plans for a
permanent, nationwide Crimes Commission with royal commission style powers ‘for
an all-out assault against organised crime’, Costigan had many powerful enemies.4
After the publication of his final report and the subsequent ‘Goanna’ scandal, these
enemies included Prime Minister Bob Hawke and media magnate Kerry Packer.
Costigan was accused of being a ‘gung-ho Royal Commissioner’ attacking the civil
liberties of Australians. His campaign against organised crime was said to be a ‘new
McCarthyism’; his proposed Crimes Commission characterised as a ‘Star Chamber’.
Amongst the controversial powers Costigan wanted for his Crimes Commission
were the traditional powers of royal commissions: to force the productions of
documents, to compel witnesses to answer questions (while being indemnified
against prosecution), and to hold open hearings. Costigan wrote:
Certainly, if you give him [the organised crime figure] the right to decline to
produce documents on a claim of self-incrimination, you will destroy the ability
of the organisation to do its job. It is the existence of this right, enshrined as a
constitutional right, which is the probable cause of the perceived failure of
Crimes Commissions in the USA ... Likewise, the plea of legal professional
privilege should not be allowed before such a body. 5

Responding to the accusation of a new McCarthyism, Costigan wrote:
That fear has raised for legitimate discussion the extent to which hearings of a
Commission such as mine or of a permanent Crimes Commission should be
held in public, or whether reports emanating from such a body should remain
secret or, if made public, should contain names ... That it is an undoubted
public interest reflecting on the health of our community that people should not
be defamed without evidence, should not be attacked publicly without an
opportunity to defend themselves, and should not be convicted without being
given a fair trial. But there is also a great and abiding principle that the public
has a right to be informed as to what is happening in its society ... my own
view is that the dominant consideration should be the public interest in
knowing what is going on and secrecy should be the exception rather than the

Anticipating the fate of his proposed Crimes Commission, Costigan outlined
measures he believed would sabotage his crime-fighting body:
There are two specific areas where the wrong decision could produce a
second-rate organisation which would inevitably result in failure. The first area
would be a failure to give it the proper powers which are needed to do the
investigation properly. The second area would be if any attempt were made to
allow Government control of the investigations .... If a State Government, or a
Federal Government, has the right to forbid a particular line of investigation
than the independence and integrity of the Commission is destroyed.7


It was precisely these shackles that the new National Crimes Authority was given
by the Hawke government. It could not initiate investigations: such matters had to be
referred to it by an Inter-Governmental Committee of the Federal and State
Attorneys-General. It was subject to intense political control; before the Attorneys-
General could refer matters to the NCA, it had to be shown that the offences could
not be handled effectively by existing law enforcement agencies. Any of the State or
Federal Attorneys-General could prevent an investigation. In addition the NCA was
required to conduct its hearings in private if they were damaging to a person’s
reputation; and witnesses were protected against self-incrimination.8

The justification for this gutting of the proposed Crimes Commission was ‘civil
liberties’. Wendy Bacon commented:
The recent sallies of Packer, Hawke and Wran are the latest in a campaign
which — in the name of civil liberties — seeks to limit the freedom of the press
and the powers of official inquiries. This new concern for civil liberties involves
a fundamental shift away from the conventional libertarian concerns about
freedom of speech and expression, freedom of assembly, and a right of all to
due process whatever their status, race or sex. Instead, a central plank of the
platform of those now publicly waving the civil liberties banner has been a
concern for a nebulous concept called “reputation” ... It is not surprising that
this anxiety about damages to reputation comes at a time when powerful
figures find themselves under suspicion.9

The parliamentary debates about the National Crimes Authority in 1984 were
angry and spiteful affairs. Liberal leaders John Howard and Andrew Peacock
charged Labor Prime Minister Bob Hawke with closing down the Costigan royal
commission to protect the Mr Bigs of organised crime and said that he was setting
up a deliberately weakened National Crimes Authority. In a marked departure from
the usual parliamentary discourse, Peacock, the leader of the party of Sir Robert
Askin, called Hawke ‘a little crook’, characterising him as ‘a man who not only
associates with criminals, but one who takes his directions from criminals.’
Although Labor members challenged both Howard and Peacock to name the Mr
Bigs whom, they claimed, Hawke was protecting, neither would. With continuing
bad grace, Peacock withdrew ‘the little crook’ remark on the grounds that people
might think he was talking about the Prime Minister’s stature. The debate was full of
partisan sound and fury, but what it signified was that the ‘all-out assault against
organised crime’, that Bottom, Moffitt, Williams, Woodward and Costigan were
demanding, would never come. As midnight approached, it was the ‘reputations’ of
Bottom’s upperworld that would be protected.


Chapter 31

The Drug Joke: Drugs and Police Corruption

One of the earliest mentions of police involvement in drug corruption in Australia
came in August 1972, when Mr Selwyn Hausman of the University of New South
Wales Law Faculty claimed that drug suppliers had told him that they were buying
marijuana from police and Customs officers. ‘If the information of my research
subjects is to be believed, the extent of police involvement is ominous’, Mr
Hausman warned. Hausman’s warning provoked a denial from the Director General
of Health Dr CJ Cummins, who said that he had never heard of marijuana suppliers
getting their drug from customs or the police. ‘All the information I have would
indicate that the reverse, that is that Customs and police officers are finding the drug
and destroying it.’

While critics have warned about the involvement of crooked police in the drug
trade for decades, allegations of police/narcotics agent involvement in drug
trafficking were generally dismissed in this fashion as unbased rumours and
fabrications aimed at destroying the credit of law enforcement agencies. Whenever
the stench of corruption became too overwhelming, it was usually blamed on ‘a few
bad apples’.

The pretence was that our police forces, like our politicians, were corruption-free.
This pretence has never been greater than at those times when police corruption was
most rampant, namely during the Askin years in New South Wales and the Bjelke-
Petersen years in Queensland.

Corruption is inherent in police work, just as it is in politics, and for much the
same reason: because an individual is invested with the powers of the state, which
they may chose to misuse.

While corruption is an inherent problem in policing, bad laws magnify the
problem enormously. Because the War on Drugs is electorally appealing, police are
regularly confronted with law-and-order campaigns calling for an aggressive style of
policing with little regard for due process, and which favour rough justice and the
fabrication of evidence. This misuse of the police to solve drugs problems greatly
encourages police corruption.

Because suppression of prohibited services or substances is effectively
impossible, the police priority is to get the best control they can over the activity.


The police often adopt a policy of regulating activities such as gambling, vice and
drugs by allowing a monopoly to fall into the hands of a chosen few in return for a
percentage of the take, with the understanding that they will keep their activities
within acceptable limits. The result is a de-facto regulation of these vice industries.
In recent decades a number of royal commissions, most notably the Fitzgerald
Inquiry in Queensland and the Wood royal commission in New South Wales, have
revealed the extent of police corruption. In Queensland, the rot was traced all the
way to the top, to the police commissioner Sir Terence Lewis. In New South Wales,
the Wood commission was told that an officer wishing to become a detective had to
commit at least one corrupt act as a test to see if he was fit to be a detective. Those
who refused were blackballed from that elite branch of the force because they were
seen as being untrustworthy.

This entrenched network of police corruption had many names. In New South
Wales the terms ‘The Laugh’ and ‘The Giggle’ were commonly used. In Queensland
it was best known as ‘The Joke’. The Joke flourished in Queensland in the sixties
under the supervision of Police Commissioner Frank Bischof. His bagmen were said
to be the Rat Pack of Terry Lewis, Tony Murphy and Glen Halloran. The Rat Pack
and their friends were central to the corruption uncovered later by Fitzgerald, by
which time Lewis was Commissioner. Bischof’s Joke in the 1960s revolved around
SP bookmakers and prostitution. This was the corruption that the Fitzgerald inquiry
focused on, while giving only a tantalising glimpse of the Drug Joke. By the time of
the Wood commission, almost a decade later, the Drug Joke had become central to
police corruption. The Wood Commission reported:

It cannot be denied that the increase in drug-related crime during the past 20
years has had a significant effect on the incidence of corruption. The
opportunities available to corrupt police from these activities has far exceeded
anything that was ever available through selective policing and protection of
SP betting, gaming, sly grogging, and vice. Furthermore, it has increased the
number of police exposed to the temptations of easy money.1

The expansion of the illicit drug trade since the 1960s has caused an enormous
expansion in police corruption. The recent history of rampant corruption on the east
coast led Sydney Morning Herald journalist Evan Whitton to remark a year before
the Fitzgerald Inquiry began:
It has been said, and not entirely in jest, that Sydney is the most corrupt city in
the western world, except of course for Newark, New Jersey and Brisbane,

Levels of Police Corruption


Police corruption takes many forms. In Drug Traffic, Alfred McCoy gave a five
level model for grading police corruption from minor offences to the level where
police corruption infects every organ of the body politic.3

To continue: The History Of An Underground World - An Introduction To The Thesis Methodology & The Literature by Marijuana Australiana Part 4:


The History Of An Underground World - An Introduction To The Thesis Methodology & The Literature by Marijuana Australiana Part 1:

The History Of An Underground World - An Introduction To The Thesis Methodology & The Literature by Marijuana Australiana Part 2:

The History Of An Underground World - An Introduction To The Thesis Methodology & The Literature by Marijuana Australiana Part 3:

The History Of An Underground World - An Introduction To The Thesis Methodology & The Literature by Marijuana Australiana Part 4:

The History Of An Underground World - An Introduction To The Thesis Methodology & The Literature by Marijuana Australiana Part 5:

The History Of An Underground World - An Introduction To The Thesis Methodology & The Literature by Marijuana Australiana Part 6:


rev 22.. our own money..not 12 fruits..but 30, one

i found you researching.
a a vandiemens land

and how that led me to find our own money..
based on the promise to pay..IN LIVING SEED
by pounds[like real money USED to be

continues from a previous papal notes..posted here

on the popes latest ..

*“The risk in seeking..and finding God in all things,..then,
is the explain too much, say with human certainty..and arrogance: ‘God is here.’ We will find only a god that fits our measure.

*I am talking about a proposal
that is always positive,..but it should not cause timidity.
Let us think..about many great saints, monks and religious men and women have done,

*Our not given to an opera libretto,
in which all is written down; but it means going,..walking, doing, searching, seeing.... We must enter into the adventure of the quest for meeting God; we must let God search and encounter us.

“*Because first;
God is always first..and makes the first move.>>

you..know..its of god..cause its good
grace mercy loving living logical..en-lightening*

BUT FIRST..tomorrows reply to

dear david..

i..examined..the matter with care three statehoods..
[the big spin/one..=..tassie ..of the dictionary]
lesser known..but you will recall..seeing vandiemans land [of the map]..of these great south lands

[soon changed nederland...[never land]..[lowland]
[lol terra nulious]...[or new holland]..that in time became..nsw..australia etc..ALL BRITISH colonies..[protectorates]

then melvil island..
[vandiemens land.] schoolbook maps..[mine came from readers digest maps]

[the northern most tip..of van die
soon changed to van die mens only vdm gulf

[look at old maps]..

first called my dutch people..
that..which..they thought it to be..its on many maps

lest we forget rats-nest [rotnest]..island
on seeing..them big rats jumping arround

imagine..the affect..of diggerydoo..white ghosts..dotted fires everywhere
on the ignorant sailers..the 1600's was a wierd time

but thats another theory..
[ surrounded by a ring]..of passion..[fire]

but..let me family made of three words
[each specificly capitalised] as im johan..
my last initials=..V*D*H

but ozzies..being ozzies..its often joined..
[like has Die Mense land..
[ the 2 de invader spun it ..Vandiemens land]

van=of..[a decendant..]
die=the..[ lot][general usage][trancendant]
mense=people..,free born/spirit..*think like..the jewish..menche*


Van=[possesive..belonging to]
Mense=..[THE MENSCE"]


*van die mens land*of the peoples land
or..*Of gods peoples land..

or as we would
not takers..but cuss-toadian..of gods wholly holy land

[land..that will not yeild.. ] yeild..genesis..3;17-19

[ie..the lost tribe]..[left the desert
THAT DIDNT..go..* 'holy land..?


the elders..of the rite..
[circumzion][each..with our eight skin groups]..[before the 12?]

here is where ..i think..
george warrumpies massacer maybe..took place
[but..its his dreaming to..tell][..he told it to me]
Groote Eylandt, Anindilyakwa, Northern Territory? 'lost' swedenberg revelations
explained thesis..was predicted..the finding..of the river of life..hence the story the colenisers
as much much as the shakers..[he was an amasing man..much like the old ron hubbard..]..but as usual..cant find his journal[but read it long ago]

[for search terms..swedenborg/site appears to redirect to book sales] the finding ..of the great southlands..river of life
they likely in sydney..inlet..[but it really was the hunter..way back then]

[but it turns be the namoi the hunter..[into murry.?].
recal the hunter river..the place the hippies found dope..[70.s
page 24/chapter 4

[police posters from that clearly the top bit..
of the seven branched..bush..not consumed..[i saw it in a ,magazine]

anyhow..recall exodus..25;39,40
on the mount..its image..of the lampstand

i found that plant..
took it to elders..showed them..the plants/seeds from each plant
they said take it to police..i seeds have many fold offspring
i took to the courts..over 70 packets of seed..and 120 least one i a new type of cannabis
maybe here

[but recall i posted it..around a month ago..
to refute some point..or other..[evolution topic?]

the 7 branched..i took to canberra..
regrew self seeded..following a police bust..[yet all are equally DEEMED..illegal.
[not unlawfull..its a BIG difference]

and lest we forget genesis 1;29..[i give you every seed bearing plant]
lest we forget..the first [in land of oz]..was to..grow new hempen ropes/ get back home

anyhow i..thought lets skip the revelation/exodus..etc
and skip forward to rev 22.2..tree of life crowing on the river of life..its leaves..for the healing of nations

i took it..they refused to look at it
then..[on goodfriday..of 2002..right under the cameras..of old parlement house focused onisabel coes house
with the scared spear..mick..[later the spear got burned..[but i found the head of the ashes

not sure where the green bcordeoy
[the spear pierced through..the place where there is left over material
of the pocket and flap..were sewed..i think at least 5 thickness of cordery
all on my left hip was a blister..that scabbed up/fell off in 4 days..and a story

the spearer..was mick..of the ozzie passport fame..
he speared me..[judged]..and im..told that thus spirit money tree currency
it had moved out of..the hand of men..but what now..

[i saw the chessboard..thing]..except i had new math
only mine..dont double..its 10 fold modest..for seed..
[just the seeds/plants govt took..from me..which i had promised uncle dennis walker one ton of seed..was stolen by police..that pertsonal..LAWFULL/contractual/ falls due

it was two people..
one of whom is suing govt for lost income..from his seized game stock
which gave me the idea..of setting a ten fold LOST HARVEST..increase..on my seed seisures
deeming each plant..and one pound the be 1000 seed

govt lie..declared war on a plant
iset upthe seed for peace trial..asking people to claim the owning of the free seed
from nimbin..what began this play..their forgfeight of their claim..onus fellback on me

but see iammany
we were made the simple the claim of possesion*..
thus 20 out of 21 plead..true/gul;ty as charged..then police wont give it back

i did posess..under possesion
well on..their behalf..i converted their possesion..
into the promised seed..underpinning gods all living
[who is not a child of the father..are we [all*,,living]... mortal living heirs..of the imortal/ spirit?

but how to make use..of all that insanity
i dont like being my left hip again

[recall oath..used to be sworn..with the oath taker..sitting on the right hand..of the oath maker
see explaining just that..let alone so much more..

i hate explaining..
yet feel its time..some good came all
thus to put to friends..peers equals..comforters..what next?

they not only stole god..from you
why..let them steal your equal..fair share?

anyhow the pappa quotes..are here

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The Cristian Family November 2006

We Stand For NO SYSTEM

Kindom (Do No Harm Communities) is the dream for freedom, but it is the dream for the freedom of those around us who also live the dream of freedom, because it is in living for the freedom of others that we get our freedom. When we live for the dreams of Kindom of those around us, we live life as a gift because we live for (dedicate our lives to) their dream of freedom, truth, peace, joy, abundance, etc, just as they live for our Kindom dreams too. This is true co-creation (cooperation) with no attack on the uniqueness of each of us. When we live this way, we have no need for any man-made system - everything/everyone has already been taken care of by our love for life.

Just as we do not have to jump 10 feet across the room to grab our next breath, neither do we have to worry about food, water and shelter because it has all been taken care of as we each co-create Kindoms/Kin-Domains for everyone. Now everybody and everything of the dream of life that is Kindom/Paradise is free (has been set free once again). The issue is greed and selfishness, power and control trips, arrogance, ignorance, being fed many many lies and being traumatised. The issue is not overpopulation - there is more than enough land available for every family to have a hectare (2.5 acres Kin-Domain) to care for. The land of Australia can provide a Kin-Domain for every family across Earth, each with a food forest, clean fresh drinking water and plenty of space for building natural do no harm habitats and with plenty of land left over.

Everyone must have the freedom to take full-responsibility for their lives, for the water they drink, the food they eat and for their shelter. Currently, "The System" forces everyone to give up taking full-responsibility so that we become grown up children accustomed to sucking on the nipples of "The System" corporations for everything, having to use money to get by and to follow the rules of money because we are not co-creating freedom, peace, truth, joy and abundance for each other. Money only leads to haves and have nots and all the abuse, manipulation and distractions that we are subjected to as slaves to money.

When we give up living for other's Kindom dreams, we start creating hell ("The System") all around us because we become self-centred - now it's all about "my freedom","my money", "my land", "my belief", "my saviour", "mine", "mine","mine", "i","i", "i", "own", "own", "own", etc. To protect what we claim we own requires a man-made system with FORCE to protect those self-centred claims. This is ALL trauma based and all story-telling (brainwashing/braindirtying).

NO SYSTEM = KINDOM/DO NO HARM COMMUNITIES photo Kindom_zpsa6d24e8a.jpg

Our true freedom comes when we set our thoughts of freedom into motion so that we live freedom rather than just talking and thinking about it while we still slave for "The System". Kindom will not happen while we meditate for hours in the bush or do yoga retreats or wait for Jesus or follow the processes of the OPPT (One People's Public Trust now called One People). This is not freedom because we are not living freedom because we are living the story-telling of Jesus or Zeitgeist or The Secret or Thrive or One Earth/Consciousness/People.

Living Kindom is very, very hard work as we set about repairing the damage to MAN/Earth/Nature that we are ALL responsible for but the burden becomes lighter the more of us put our life-energy into the dream of returning Earth to Paradise. Day-after-day, we all have to work our arses off until Kindom is all around us (MAN) once again. This is the price we pay to set each other free on a piece of land (Kin-Domain), so that no one is under the image-power (education/brainwashing/story-telling) of another MAN anymore and so that everyone can have their space of love to create and live their unique, do no harm dreams. This only happens once we have the Kindoms set up so that everyone is provided for.

Once we re-create the food forests, whether on land or in the suburbs, we can re-claim our freedom, breaking the strangle-hold of "The System" because we are no longer reliant on its services and benefits and no longer turning each other into slaves of "The System", cogs in the wheels of "The System" machine. If we don't put the effort in to set everyone and everything free all around us then we still live in HELL ("The System"). The key is to live for everyone else's freedom so that we can have it too.

From Bare Dirt To Abundance
A Year In The Life Of The
Love For Life Food Forest

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
8th February 2013
51 Minutes 46 Seconds

From Bare Dirt To Abundance Part Two A
5th November 2014

From Bare Dirt To Abundance Part Two B
Coming Shortly

We live for NO SYSTEM. We do not lose anything by not having a man-made system and, in fact, we gain. We gain our freedom and we gain abundance. Let go of the fear.

The Cristian Family November 2006

A Collection Of Various Love For Life Posts
Providing The Big Picture We See

Sequential Order

We ask you to NOT believe anything we say/share and instead use scrutiny like an intense blow torch and go where the logic of truth/sense takes you. This is very, very important. Put everything you believe up to the test of scrutiny to see how it stacks up. If you are true to your heart/senses and go where the logic of truth/sense takes you will find that NO belief, etc, will stand up to the test of scrutiny. They just do not stack up because they are lies/fraud.

After you have watched and read all the material and any questions are left unanswered, send us your landline number and we will use the internet phone as a free unlimited call. We are on Sydney NSW Australia time. Best times for us to chat are between 11.00am and 6.00pm.

It is critical that you fully comprehend Image Power, "Spelling", Trauma, Reaction To Trauma, Curses, Processing Curses, Full-Responsibility/Liability, Limited Liability/Responsibility (passing-the-back), Slavery, Senses/Sense vs Non-Sense/Senses, Re-Presenting Intellectual Property such as but not limited to "Name", Storytelling/Storytellers, Duality, Black-Magic, Belief, Lies, "i", All Seeing "i" (eye), etc..... These themes and others are covered over and over and over again.

If you do not comprehend these insights and are unable to use your senses to sense your way through all the non-sense/non-sensory-images that enslave MAN under their image power (darkness = "The System" = Hell), men and women will remain deeply trapped under a terrible state of trauma. Our intention is to inspire you to remedy by showing you how to move away from reacting to trauma in all its nefarious and devious forms.

Superb Diamond Range Interviewing
Arthur & Fiona Cristian 4th February 2014

His-Story/Her-Story (History)
Arthur Cristian - Love For Life
2005-2007 - Re-posted July 2014

The Dream Of Life Part 6
Under The Spell Of Intellectual Property

Arthur Cristian - 51 Minutes 52 Seconds

Trauma Induced Fantasy
July 2013 Interview With
Jeanice Barcelo And Arthur & Fiona Cristian

The Dark Side Of The Moon
The Background To "The System"

Arthur & Fiona Cristian Interviewed By
Jahnick Leaunier, The Tru-Mon Show
24th August 2016
Love For Life - 142 Minutes

Eric Dubay's Flat Earth Is A Cult
The Background To The System Part Two

Arthur & Fiona Cristian Chatting With
Jahnick Leaunier On The Tru-Mon Show
Love For Life - 31st August 2016
154 Minutes

Eclipse Of The Sun - Video (Arthur swears in this video)
The Background To The System Part Three
Arthur & Fiona Cristian Chatting With
Jahnick Leaunier On The Tru-Mon Show
Love For Life - 25th October 2016

The "Name" Is The Mark Of The Beast
The Strawman Identifying
Your Slave Status In "The System"

By Arthur Cristian - Love For Life
5th February 2012 - 56 Minutes 25 Seconds

The Satanic Craft Of Inculcation In Practice
Fiona's ACT Supreme Court Affidavit Explaining Inculcation & Illumination
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
4th March 2016

The Spinning Top
Full Bloom Inculcation

Arthur And Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
Facebook Discussions Between The
8th December 2016
26th January 2017

The Shit Of Death
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
28th January 2017

The Selfie Of Freakenstein
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
17th March 2017

Three Sets Of Fiona Cristian Documents Filed With ACAT
Merged Into One Document For Downloading

Fiona Cristian Affidavit
ACT Supreme Court / Court Of Appeal

Dancing With Magic (Lies)
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Videos, Articles, Comments
And Pending E-Book
Love Fort Life
September 2015

Dancing With Magic Part One
Arthur & Fiona Cristian - Love For Life
5th September 2015

Dancing With Magic Part Two
Arthur Cristian - Love For Life
12th September 2015

Dancing With Magic Part Three
Arthur & Fiona Cristian - Love For Life
13th September 2015

Dancing With Magic (Lies) Part Four:
Arthur & Fiona Cristian - Love For Life
16th September 2015

Introduction To Kindom Video
By Arthur & Fiona Cristian - Love For Life
6th March 2015

To Be Educated Is To Have No Soul
The System Is Soul Destroying

Frederick Malouf & Michael Tellinger's
Contrived Gifting
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
1st September 2016

Illumination IS Definition
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
26th to 29th January 2016

The Nefarious Tactics Used
To Disguise Truth And Distract Us
From Remedy

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
24th January 2014
This post contains many recent Facebook comments
and email replies which collectively provides a big picture
into exposing the deception behind IMAGE POWER.

The Pull Of E-Motion
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
8th February 2014

Processing Curses
A Lie Is A Curse
Liars Process Curses

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
26th February 2014

How The System Is Really Constructed
Bouncing Back Curses Upon Curse Makers
To Stop Harm Forevermore

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
27th February 2014

Slave To A Name
Parts One, Two, Three, Four,
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
3rd to 6th March 2014

Educated Slaves
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
20th March 2014

The Only Path To Freedom
Beware The False Steps

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life - 2nd April 2014

Free-Dumb For All
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life - 5th April 2014

Revoking The Ego
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life - 8th April 2014

How MAN Commits Spiritual Suicide
Arthur Cristian
Love For Life - 3rd April 2014

How To Detect Intel Operatives Working
For The New World Order Agenda
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life - 10th April 2014

How The Psyop Program & Intel Networks
Are Messing With Your Head +

Arthur & Fiona Cristian - April 2014

Godzilla Through The Looking Glass
Destroyed By Name"

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life - 20th April 2014

What It's Going To Take
To Co-Create Freedom Forevermore

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life - 22nd April 2014

Falling For Fairy Stories
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life - 24th April 2014

A Disassociation From The Work
Of Kate of Gaia

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life - 17th May 2014

Separating The Wheat From The Chaff
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life - 22nd May 2014

Revolution Or Revolution
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life - 25th May 2014

Routing Out Psyop Programs
Routs Out Intel Operatives
Exposing Max Igan's Psyop Program

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life - 31st May 2014

The Psyop Program Scam
Behind Religion Belief Faith
& Associated Opinion

Arthur Cristian
Love For Life
11th June 2014

Another Delusion
Arthur Cristian
Love For Life
11th June 2014

A World Of Words Is A World Of Lies
Arthur Cristian
Love For Life
13th June 2014

The Name Of The Beast Is MAN

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life - 9th May 2014
Includes Mountain MAN Arrested
Facebook Discussion About "Name"
Uploaded 25th June 2014

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life - 13th August 2014

Discussion With Brother Gregory
Clearly Demonstrating Christianity
Is Part Of The Problem
And Not The Solution

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
Between the 12th May 2014 and 30th August 2014

The Psyop Program Behind Free Food
And Permaculture

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
29th October 2014
Facebook Discussion With Unconditional Love Moon

Head So Strong
Music and Vocals Arthur Cristian
Backing Vocals and Vocal Effects Arthur Cristian & Hannah Wood
Lyrics Fiona and Arthur Cristian
Written during our spare time between Aug & Oct 2014

The Time Of Trauma That Destroys Us
Arthur Cristian - Love For Life
9th November 2014

The Most Powerful Video On Spirituality
And Happiness FOR SLAVES
How To Accept Slavery And Be Happy About It

Arthur Cristian - Love For Life
6th August 2014
Facebook Discussion About The Work Of Eckhart Tolle

What Can We Do What Can We See
Arthur Cristian - Love For Life
A series of Arthur Cristian Facebook
posts and discussions
between 17th and 21st November 2014

The Misuse Of Love By Intel Networks
To Create Doubt And Uncertainty
With The Intention To Destroy Love
And Therefore Destroy MAN
(True Freedom, Peace, Joy, Abundance And Truth
For Everyone)

By Arthur Cristian - Love For Life
26th November 2014

The Void Of E-GO That Is Spiritual Suicide
The Justification Of Laziness
That Perpetuates System Creature Comforts
Ensuring Our Fall

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
13th December 2014
Massive Update Occurred 14th Dec 2014 3.10pm Sydney Aust time

Darkness Visible Part One A, B, C, D
The Freemasonic World In Plain Sight
Decoding George Washington Lithographs

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
14th December 2014
Part One A
Part One B
Part One C
Part One D

Darkness Visible Part Two
Yin And Yang, Duality, Spiritual Suicide
And Frank O'Collins UCADIA / One Heaven

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
14th December 2014

Darkness Visible Part Three
How The Word Sausage
Re-Presents The New World Order
Boiling Point & Out To Get Us

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
27th December 2014

Darkness Visible Part Four
Aleister Crowley - Thelema - OTO
And The Black Magic Psychedelia Of The Intellect

Facebook Discussion
4th to 10th January 2015

Darkness Visible Part Five
Living MAN Fiona Cristian's Standing
+ Decoding Judeo/Judaism

Fiona Cristian & Arthur Cristian
Love For Life
24th January 2015

Darkness Visible Part Six
The Many Fingers Of The Hidden Hand Appearing
YouTube Community Flagged A Video
Posted To The ArthurLoveForLife YouTube Channel
As Being "Hate Speech"

Fiona Cristian & Arthur Cristian
Love For Life
4th February 2015

Darkness Visible Part Seven
The Full Responsibility For Setting
True Freedom For All Into Motion
In Present-Sense Forevermore

Fiona Cristian & Arthur Cristian
Love For Life
10th February 2015

Who We Really Are Does Not End
At The Surface Of Our Skin

Arthur Cristian & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life - 22nd February 2015

Introduction To Kindom Video
By Arthur & Fiona Cristian - Love For Life
6th March 2015

The Rot Parts One, Two, Three
Arthur Cristian
Love For Life
5th June 2015

"The Good Guys" And The "Bad Guys"
Working Together To Bring In
The New World Order

Arthur Cristian - 18th July 2015

Can You Spot The Ego?
Where's Wally? Part One

Compilation of Facebook & Youtube
Insight Posts During Aug/Sept 2015
By Arthur Cristian

Can You Spot The Ego?
Where's Wally? Part Two

Compilation of Facebook & Youtube
Insight Posts During Aug/Sept 2015
By Arthur Cristian

Dancing With Magic (Lies)
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Videos, Articles, Comments
And Pending E-Book
Love Fort Life
September 2015

Dancing With Magic Part One
Arthur & Fiona Cristian - Love For Life
5th September 2015

Dancing With Magic Part Two
Arthur Cristian - Love For Life
12th September 2015

Dancing With Magic Part Three
Arthur & Fiona Cristian - Love For Life
13th September 2015

Dancing With Magic (Lies) Part Four:
Arthur & Fiona Cristian - Love For Life
16th September 2015

Illumination IS Definition
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
26th to 29th January 2016

The Satanic Craft Of Inculcation In Practice
Fiona's ACT Supreme Court Affidavit Explaining Inculcation & Illumination
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
4th March 2016

The Dark Side Of The Moon
The Background To "The System" Part One

Arthur & Fiona Cristian Chatting With
Jahnick Leaunier On The Tru-Mon Show
Love For Life - 24th August 2016

Eric Dubay's Flat Earth Is A Cult
The Background To The System Part Two

Arthur & Fiona Cristian Chatting With
Jahnick Leaunier On The Tru-Mon Show
Love For Life - 31st August 2016

To Be Educated Is To Have No Soul
The System Is Soul Destroying
Frederick Malouf & Michael Tellinger's
Contrived Gifting

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
1st September 2016

New Love For Life Kindom Facebook Group
Started March 2015
Includes 63 Minute
Introduction To Kindom Video
By Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Facebook Kindom Group Guidelines
The Love For Life website home-page provides
the bigger-picture background to the themes
touched on in this video:

Crop Circles Are A Massive Hoax
Facebook Discussion On Simon Kawai's Wall
Involving Arthur & Fiona Cristian
31st August 2013

OPPT & Slavery Through Intellectual Conscription By Deceit
Arthur & Fiona Cristian - Love For Life
27th February 2013 onwards...
Part One:
Part Two:
Part Three:

Water Is The Life Of MANS Consciousness (Breath)
Arthur & Fiona Cristian - Love For Life - 8th February 2013
Part One: - 70 Minutes 5 Seconds
Part Two: - 81 Minutes 13 Seconds
Part Three: - 70 Minutes 18 Seconds

What Do You Believe On Origins?
Who Said There Was A Beginning?
Who's Truth Do You Accept?
Belief Is A Strange Idea.

Discussion Lyndell, Scott and Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Between March and April 2013
Posted 29th October 2013

So You Want The Good Bits Of "The System"
But Not The Bad Bits?

By Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life - 12th August 2013

Turning Away From The Reflection
Of MANS Looking Glass

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
30th April 2013


From Bare Dirt To Abundance
A Year In The Life Of The
Love For Life Food Forest

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
8th February 2013
51 Minutes 46 Seconds

From Bare Dirt To Abundance Part Two
5th November 2014

From Bare Dirt To Abundance Part Three
7th March 2016
60 Minutes

Love For Life Food Forest & Native Garden March 2016
Extension Of The Love For Life Food Forest And Establishment
Of A New Native Garden At The Front Of The Rental Property
In East Bowral - 24th October 2015 to Mid February 2016.
15 Minutes

Control The Land
And You Control MAN On The Land
Displace MAN From Land
And You Turn MAN Into Slaves

Arthur & Fiona Cristian - Love For Life
April 2011 (Updated 14th September 2011)

The Divine Spark
Facebook Discussion With Raymond Karczewski
Arthur & Fiona Cristian & Others
2nd October 2013

Capturing Another MANS Uniqueness
A Facebook Debate With
Arthur & Fiona Cristian - Love For Life
And Raymond Karczewski
Starting 13th May 2013

The Spell Is Broken
Taking The Land To Create Kindom

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
3rd March 2013

The Steps Of Kindom
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life 2006/2007

To explore these themes in greater detail go here where you can find links to all our Love For Life comments, articles, debates, discussions, videos, podcasts, etc:

All the best
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life

Email :
Mobile : 0011 61 418 203204 - (0418 203204)
Snail Mail: PO Box 1320 Bowral 2576 NSW Australia
Facebook Arthur Cristian :
YouTube Arthur Cristian :

Register To The Love For Life Mailing List:

Facebook Group Why Aren't We Free Discussion :
Facebook Group Kindom/Do No Harm Community Discussion :

Links below will kick in when the professionally recorded Love For Life music is released.

SoundCloud :
Nimbit Music :
Twitter :
Facebook Music :
YouTube Love For Life Music :
MySpace :
Google + Fiona Cristian :

Peaceful Transition Through Sacrifice And Service

We feel there is an essential peaceful do no harm transition required to get all of MAN back to standing on MANS feet without reliance upon another MAN for water, food, shelter. As it stands everyone in "The System" are highly dependent and reliant on the "group mind-set" that forms "The System" of slaves providing services and benefits for the emotionally addicted slaves to "The System" (and you can put us in the same basket too). The transition is to get MAN back to relying ONLY on nature without 3rd party interlopers, intermeddlers, interceders getting in the way. The transition is a team effort with the foresight for setting all of MAN free down-the-line so that MAN is no longer dependent on slaves and masters providing services, benefits, privileges and exclusivity while being bound to contracts, rituals, procedures, conditions, rules & regulations which compromises MAN severely.

This transition is all about shifting from limited liability/responsibility to full liability/responsibility. This full responsibility is all about caring for our health, nature all around us, clean uncorrupted (pure) water and food, partner/co-creator, children, shelter, animal-friends in partnership, etc. In "The System", we are already together destroying each other - we have to come together to create peace together so that we can all have peace. We cannot live peacefully when we are islands, not taking full responsibility for the lives of those around us until EVERYONE can take full responsibility for their life, which means that EVERYONE is healed of system trauma. In "The System", we all come together to make slaves of each other - now is the moment to come together to set each other free, to live for each other's freedom, peace, joy and abundance. Once we have set each other free, we are free.

Control The Land
And You Control MAN On The Land
Displace MAN From Land
And You Turn MAN Into Slaves

Arthur & Fiona Cristian - Love For Life
April 2011 (Updated 14th September 2011)

The Spell Is Broken
Taking The Land To Create Kindom

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
3rd March 2013

"The Steps Of Kindom"


Once we fix these issues, we or our children or our descendants to come, can start focusing on the even bigger picture of getting back to where our ancestors were, as breatharyan's, before they fell into non-sense images to be enslaved by them.

All the best to you and your family
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life

The Cristian Family November 2006

The Cristian Family Declaration

The Cristian family and The Love for Life Campaign are apolitical, non-religious, non-violent, anti weapons, anti drugs (both pharmaceutical and recreational) and anti any ideology that denies the existence of Do No Harm Communities (Kindoms) and suppresses the uniqueness and freedom of all men, women and children.

The Cristian family and our Love For Life work is unaligned to any big business corporation, intelligence agency, government body, "system" law, "system" think tanks, "system" green or environmental movements, religion, cult, sect, society (fraternity, brotherhood, sisterhood, order, club, etc,) secret or not, hidden agenda, law or sovereignty group, occult, esoteric, New Age or Old Age.

The Cristian family supports and promotes the remedy that brings an everlasting peace, freedom, truth, joy, abundance and do no harm for all of life without causing loss of uniqueness or the need for having slaves and rulers. We are not into following the one in front or being shepherds for sheeple. Most importantly, we take full-responsibility for everything we think, feel and do.

The Cristian family are not Christians.

Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life

December 2006

The Cristian Family November 2006


Being of clear brain, heart and intention, we each declare the following to be true:

• We have no intention of ending our own lives.

• We will not tolerate suppression of truth, ideas, freedom, or our work. We stand for freedom of speech.

• We stand together to support others in the expression of truths and freedom to speak out no matter how radical those ideas may seem.

• Standing for freedom takes courage; together we shall be strong in the face of all odds.

• If it is ever claimed that we have committed suicide, encountered an unfortunate accident, died of sickness/disease, disappeared, been institutionalized, or sold out financially or in any other way to self-interested factions, we declare those claims false and fabricated.

• We testify, assert and affirm without reservation, on behalf of all those who have dedicated their lives to the ending of secrecy and the promotion of freedom of thought, ideas and expression that we shall prevail.

• We Do Not Have Multiple Personality Disorders

Arthur Cristian
Fiona Cristian
Jasmin Lily Cristian
Emma Rose Cristian
Frances Hannah Cristian
Xanthe Jane Cristian

15th December 2006 (Edited/Updated 18th September 2011)

The Cristian Family November 2006

Update Regarding The Love For Life
Home Page And Quick User Guide

We are turning the Love for Life Quick User Guide into a blog of all the main insights of our work since March 2005, whether through articles, videos, podcasts or discussions/debates.

As we do not have the time to compile everything we have written into a book, as many have suggested we do, compiling all our most important work into one area of the website is a way of providing easy access to this work so those interested are able to fully comprehend the big picture.

Instead of having to find our different articles, videos, etc, in various parts of the website, it will all be accessible here: and here:

Love For Life Videos

As amateurs and posted in the Quick User Guide below the Facebook links, we're currently creating and posting a series of videos called "The Dream Of Life" which covers the ground of all the Love For Life insights. We plan to have the videos completed by December 31st 2012. Once this is behind us, our intention is to create a 2 hour or so video covering the body of this work. All videos are embedded in the quick user guide and uploaded in Arthur's YouTube channel:

Love For Life Music

We have started recording songs, with others, that express the themes of Love For Life. They are now being posted on Arthur's YouTube channel: and are embedded in the quick user guide We have over 100 songs to record. A few rough demos have already been used as the soundtrack on the first "Dream of Life" video.

About Us - Love For Life & The Cristian Family

Also, everything we, the Cristian family, have gone through, from bank fraud and the theft of the family home to death threats and attempts on Arthur's life, is documented in the Quick User Guide too. If you, the reader, are prepared to put the effort in, you will comprehend the extent to which we have all been tricked into becoming slaves, giving up our uniqueness and our full-responsibility for life and destroying everything of life to the point where life is in danger of dying out completely. You will also comprehend the remedy to all this chaos; a remedy that requires only love for life and the determination to do what needs to be done. Though our focus is very strongly on the remedy that creates a world of freedom, truth, peace, joy, abundance and Do No Harm for all of life without loss of uniqueness or the need for slaves and rulers, we realise that it is vital to comprehend how to get there and what stops us from getting there. This is why there is so much information on the hows and whys of everything going wrong in the world today. We are not into peddling conspiracy theories, we are into routing out all forms of organised crime.

Saturday 26th November 2011

Arthur and Fiona Cristian
Love For Life

Mobile: 0011 61 418 203204 - (0418 203204)
Facebook Arthur Cristian:
YouTube Arthur Cristian:
Nimbit Music:
Facebook Music:
Facebook Why Aren't We Free Discussion:
Facebook Do No Harm Community:
YouTube Love For Life Music:
Google + Fiona Cristian:
Register To The Love For Life Mailing List:

1. For The Body Of The Love For Life Work by Arthur and Fiona Cristian

Which Unravels The Reasons For The Chaos, Mayhem and Confusion Being Experienced In The World Today, Explains The Need For "Community Immunity" and Responsibility, and Focuses On The Creation Of Kindoms - Do No Harm, Life-Sustainable Communities (As The Remedy That Heals All Mans Woes) - And How We Can Co-Create Them. For Comments, Articles And Discussions, Go Here: - Also Go Here To See Podcasts And Videos Posted by Arthur & Fiona Cristian: - The Information Shared Comes From Inspiration, Intuition, Heartfelt-Logic And Information Gathered From Nature And Many Amazing Men And Women Along The Way. It Is Not Found In Any Books Or Channellings, Or Talked About By "Experts". Go Here To Read A Brief Synopsis Of Why We Started Love For Life:

2. For Information About The Ringing Cedars of Russia Series

go here: and for more on Eco Homes, Villages, Organic and Permaculture Gardening and Life-Sustainability, etc, go here: and here: and Mikhail Petrovich Shchetinin - Kin's School - Lycee School at Tekos:

3. For How To Eat A Raw, Living Food Diet,

go here: - LIFE is information. When we distort LIFE and then eat, drink, absorb, think, feel, hear, see, touch, taste, smell and perform these distortions, the information of LIFE, your LIFE, our LIFE, our children's lives, everyone's LIFE, is distorted.

4. To Find A Menu For The Extensive Research Library (over 8,000 items posted embodying over 11,000 documents, pdf's, videos, podcasts, etc)

Which Covers Topics From Health to Chemtrails/Haarp to Brain Control to Archaeology to Astronomy Geocentricity Heliocentricity to Pandemics Bird Flu Swine Flu to Fluoride to Cancer to Free Energy to Global Warming, 9/11, Bali Bombings, Aspartame, MSG, Vaccinations, Aids/HIV, Mercury, New World Order, Satanism, Religions, Cults, Sects, Symbolism, etc, etc, go here:

5. If You Would Like To Read About The Cristian Family NSW Supreme Court Case

(Macquarie Bank/Perpetual Limited Bank Fraud Condoned By Judges, Registrars, Barristers, Lawyers, Politicians, Public Servants, Bureaucrats, Big Business and Media Representatives - A Crime Syndicate/Terrorist Organisation) Which Prompted The Creation Of This Love For Life Website December 2006, And The Shooting And Torture Of Supporters Who Assisted Us In Reclaiming The Family Home, Joe Bryant And His Wife, Both In Their Late 70's, go here: And Read Some Of Our Email Correspondence With Lawyer Paul Kean - Macedone Christie Willis Solari Partners - Miranda Sydney May 17th-June 27th 2006:

6. For The Stories Of Other Victims Of The System,

go here: (If you have a story you would like us to put up, we would love to here from you:
action @

7. For Documentation Of Harm Done By The Powers-That-Be And Their Representatives,

Evidence Revealing How Victims Did Not Break The Peace, Caused No Crime or Harm, There Were No Injured Parties. Documenting Incontrovertible Evidence Demonstrating How The Powers That Be (PTB) And Their Lackeys Will Break All The Laws They Are Supposed To Uphold. They Will Kidnap, Intimidate, Terrorise, Rape, Pillage, Plunder And Lie And Take Responsibility For None Of It. All Part Of Their Tactics Of Using Fear And Trauma To Keep Us In Our Place. Relatives Of Those Under Their Radar Are Also Not Safe From Attack And Intimidation. All Starting From A $25 Fine For Not Voting And A $65 Fine For Not Changing A Dog Registration. We Do Not Have Freedom And Can Only Appear To Have Freedom If We Comply. Regardless How Small The Matter The PTB Throw Hundreds Of Thousands Of Dollars Away To Enforce Their Will.... Go Here:
Fiona Cristian Reply To State Debt Recovery Office - Part One to Part Ten - From 17th October 2008 And Still Continuing: or
Fiona Cristian Reply To State Debt Recovery Office
Part One: - From 17th October 2008
Part Two: - From 18th December 2008
Part Three: - From 9th January 2009
Part Four: - From 14th January 2009
Part Five: - The Sick Puppy - From 20th February 2009
Part Six: - Police Officers, Sheriff’s Officers, Tow Truck Driver and State Debt Recovery Office Blatantly Ignore the Law To Rape, Pillage and Plunder The Private Property Of Fiona Cristian - From 11th March 2009
Part Seven: - Affidavit Of Truth - Letter To The Queen + Australia: Fascism is Corporatism - From 30th March 2009
Part Eight: - The Pirates Auction And The Ghost Of VSL386 - From 4th April 2009
Part Nine: - Arthur Cristian's Letter To Pru Goward MP - From 15th December 2009
Part Ten: - Should We Be In Fear Of Those Who Claim To Protect Us? "Roman Cult" Canon Law - Ecclesiastical Deed Poll - The Work Of Frank O'Collins - From 13th October 2010

8. If You Are Interested In Information On Freedom From Statutes, Rule-Of-Law, Free Man/Free Woman, Strawman, "Person" and Admiralty Law (The Law Of Commerce),

go here: - For Common Law, Democracy, Constitution, Trial By Jury, Fee Simple, etc, go here:

9. If You Are Interested In Banking and Money Created (Fiat/Credit/Debt/Mortgage/Loan/Overdraft etc) Out-Of-Thin-Air, How Banks Counterfeit Money,

go here:

10. For A List Of All The Latest Posts In The Love For Life Website,

go here:

11. For Links To Many Hundreds Of Videos, DVDs And Podcasts

go here:

12. To See The Cristian Family Pledge, Legal and other Disclaimers

go here:

13. To Read About How A Representative Of The NSW Jewish Board Of Deputies Had Threatened To Shut Down The Love For Life Website

go here: Part One: Part Two: THE STEVE JOHNSON REPORT AND VIDEO: and Part Three: Latest Update On James Von Brunn:

Conscious Love Always
Arthur & Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
action @
0418 203204 (int: 0011 61 418 203204)
PO Box 1320 Bowral 2576 NSW Australia

Arthur Cristian

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The Cristian Family November 2006

Love For Life Legal Disclaimer

The information contained on this world wide web site (the web site and all information herein shall be collectively referred to as "Web Site Information"), under the registered url name,, resides on a host server environment in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15203, United States of America.

The Web Site Information has been prepared to provide general information only and is not intended to constitute or be construed as providing substantive professional advice or opinion on any facts or circumstances. Transmission of the information is not intended to create, nor does its receipt give rise to, a professional-client relationship between 'Love for Life' and the receiver.

While every care has been taken to ensure the accuracy and timeliness of the information prepared and/or reported on this site, 'Love for Life' is not responsible for any errors or omissions or for the Web Site Information not being up to date. The Web Site Information may not reflect the most current developments.

The impact of the law, policy and/or procedure for any particular situation depends on a variety of factors; therefore, readers should not act upon any Web Site Information without seeking professional advice. 'Love for Life' is not responsible for any action taken in reliance on any Web Site Information herein.

'Love for Life' is not responsible for any action you or others take which relies on information in this website and/or responses thereto. 'Love for Life' disclaim all responsibility and liability for loss or damage suffered by any person relying, directly or indirectly, on the Web Site Information, including in relation to negligence or any other default.

'Love for Life' does not warrant, represent or hold out that any Web Site Information will not cause damage, or is free from any computer virus, defect(s) or error(s). 'Love for Life' is not liable to users for any loss or damage however caused resulting from the use of material found on its web site.

'Love for Life' does not necessarily endorse or approve of any Web Site Information linked to and contained on other web sites linked herein and makes no warranties or representations regarding the merchantability or fitness for purpose, accuracy and quality, of any such information.

The sending of information by you, and the receipt of it by 'Love for Life', is not intended to, and does not, create a professional-client relationship.

All Web Site Information is considered correct at the time of the web site's most recent revision.



The Cristian Family November 2006

Posted Wednesday 17th June 2009
Updated September 2011

NSW Jewish Board Of Deputies
Has Threatened To Shut Down
The Love For Life Website

No Freedom Of Speech - No Freedom Of Thought

Love For Life does not support harm doing in any shape or form. However, we are supporters of free speech and post articles, documentaries, etc, that represent a wide cross section of ideas. See the Love For Life extensive research library where over 6000 documents, articles and videos are posted: We clearly see the evidence of the destruction to MAN and the earth that has been caused by ALL religions over the centuries and are therefore not supporters of religions, cults, sects or any group that demands conformity of thought, speech or action, or has rules, regulations or rituals that must be followed. Religions, nationalities and cultural "identities" are formed as a result of the brainwashing we receive from childhood. They are part of the tactics the Establishment uses to keep us all divided from one another and fighting one another.

All religions promote discrimination and division, leading to hatred and even violence and murder. None of them have yet to produce a remedy to all the suffering, poverty, unhappiness and discrimination in the world. If any religion truly had the remedy to all the suffering on earth, there would no longer be any suffering. What have Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, Judaism, atheism and the New Age done to end the suffering in the world?

Since December 2006, there have been many attempts to take down the Love For Life website. Any attempts have been thwarted by Love For Life supporters inundating the harm-doers with emails, etc, objecting to them taking down the website for a variety of reasons. The trouble makers usually back off when they realise that they can post all their views, arguments, beliefs, etc, in the Love For Life website without censorship or restriction imposed. They get to see that even the Queen, Pope, Prime Minister, President of America, etc, can post all their views without hindrance or sabotage and that we support freedom of speech/thought which means we support the right of all sides to express their views.

Of note, there is a vast amount of information posted in the Love For Life website which we do not agree with but we leave it all up because we refuse to be biased, opinionated or self-centered/self-serving. Of the many thousands of comments posted over the years we have only removed posts containing secret links to commercial advertisements, terrible foul language, threats of violence and death, etc, and attacks on other people's characters that avoid the subject/debate at hand. Besides links to advertisements, we have taken down less than six comments due to the above. We usually leave everything up, all warts and all, even those posts threatening to do terrible things to Fiona, our children, our dogs, our friends, family & supporters, etc.

The Love For Life website has information from all sides on many subjects, whether about Islam, Judaism, Christianity, Law, health, psychology, mind control, vaccination, aspartame, MSG, Chemtrails etc. There are over 11,000 articles, documentaries etc on the website and they are so diverse that we are sure that everyone would be able to find something they loved and something they hated, if they took the time to search. If we removed all the articles hated by everyone, there would probably be nothing left! We are not anti anyone but freedom of speech is freedom of speech and no one should condemn the work of another without taking the time to research the subject themselves. Yes, there are articles by those who have a less-than-rosy-viewpoint of Judaism, but there are also articles on the dark side of Tibetan Buddhism (and it is very dark) for those who are interested in the truth: Tibet - Buddhism - Dalai Lama: Should the authors of these articles be abused and imprisoned for daring to challenge the widely conceived reputation of Buddhism as being the religion of peace and love and that of the Dalai Lama as a saint, or should those interested be allowed to study the work and come to their own conclusions? The same applies to all the articles, documentaries, etc, about Christianity, Islam, Freemasonry, New World Order, etc.

The Love for Life website also shows how the Rule of Law, the Bar, the Government, the Monarchy, the system of commerce, the local, national and multi/trans-national private corporations, all the courses and careers on offer from our universities, all the educators, scientists, academics and experts, the aristocrats and the Establishment bloodlines have also done NOTHING to end the suffering in the world. The website maps the insanity of a world where there is no help for those in need, just as there was no help available for us when we were victims of terrible bank fraud: "NSW Supreme Court Case - Macquarie Bank/Perpetual Limited vs Fiona Cristian - Victims Of Bank Fraud Condoned By Judges" (orchestrated, condoned and protected by an international crime syndicate/terrorist organisation of judges, barristers, registrars, lawyers, politicians, banksters, big business representatives, media moguls and other lackeys who, all together, put up a wall of silence despite our trying many, many avenues. After the family home was stolen and business destroyed we were left close to poverty and destitution caring for 4 young daughters. Three years later not much has changed regardless of all our efforts. Where were all the followers of all the religions to help us? Or do we have to be members of those religions to receive help from others involved in them?

The New South Wales Jewish Board of Deputies accused us of being anti - Jewish, see: and because we had posted an excerpt from James von Brun's book: Kill the Best Gentiles: in which he blames Jews for the problems of the world. Obviously this is not our view because of what we have stated above. We do not hate anyone, whatever religion they follow. We are always open to talk to any religious leader or politician and meet with any judge, member of the Bar, experts, academics, educators etc to share the remedy we offer that heals all the divisions between MAN and MAN, and MAN and the EARTH.

Today, a representative of the New South Wales Jewish Board of Deputies is threatening to close the website down, because they have decided it is anti - Jewish and that we promote racism. What has the New South Wales Jewish Board of Deputies done to end the suffering in the world? Can they show that they are concerned with the suffering of ALL men, women and children AND ARE SEEN TO BE DOING SOMETHING ABOUT IT or are they only concerned with Jewish affairs? If so, they, along with all the other religions that only care for their own, are part of the problem, not part of the solution. The man who rang Arthur today was only concerned with Jewish affairs; he was not interested in our intentions or in anybody else, just as most Christians, Muslims, Sikhs, Catholics, etc, are only interested in their own. While we separate ourselves into groups, dividing ourselves from others with rules, regulations, rituals, procedures and conditions, we will never solve our problems.

No matter what we in the Western World Civilisation of Commerce have been promised by our politicians, religious leaders, scientists, educators, philosophers, etc, for the past two hundred years, all we have seen is ever-increasing destruction of men, women and children and the earth. None of the so-called experts and leaders we have been taught to rely on are coming up with a solution and none of them are taking full-responsibility for the fact that they can't handle the problem. All religious books talk about end times full of destruction and suffering but why do we have to follow this program when there is an alternative to hatred, mayhem and death? Why are our leaders following the program of destruction and death rather than exploring the alternatives? It seems that any mainstream politician, priest or academic are only interested in supporting the RULES OF THE DIVIDE, that maintain the haves and the have nots. For 200+ years, 99% of the world population have been so trained to pass on their responsibility for themselves, others and the earth, that the 1% of the population that make up the leaders of the rest of us are making all the decisions leading to the destruction of all of us and the earth. Let's not forget the education system that brainwashes the 99% of the population that we are free and have equal rights while, in fact, we are feathering the nests of those at the top.

At the root of all our problems is self-centredness, an unwillingness nurtured by the Establishment that keeps us concerned only with our own needs rather than the needs of others around us and the Earth. Instead of creating and releasing acts of love for those around us as gifts to benefit them and the earth, we take, take and take, until there is nothing left. The whole point of the Love for Life website is to show people the root of all our problems and to share the remedy. The extensive research library is there to attract browsers and to provide access to information not available through mainstream channels. If the New South Wales Jewish Board of Deputies can, after careful examination of our work, prove that anything we are saying is wrong, we will be happy to accept their proof. If they cannot, and they are still insistent on closing the website down, they will be showing themselves to be traitors to MAN because they are not interested in pursuing any avenue that can end the suffering in the world.

All religions, corporations and organisations that support and maintain the Western World Civilisation of Commerce are part of the problem because our civilisation is a world of haves and have nots, racism, violence, hatred, poverty, sickness, discrimination, abuse, starvation, homelessness, corruption, collusion, vindictiveness, social unrest, arrogance, ignorance, fear, war and chaos. While we support civilisation, we support death and destruction because ALL civilisations that have ever existed are apocalyptic by design.

If we truly want peace on earth and freedom for all, we have to let go of all that which keeps us divided, and come together as MAN, conscious living co-creators of creation. The Love For Life website offers a remedy to the problems we all face in the form of DO NO HARM COMMUNITIES: For more details see here: and here: - We also highly recommend that everyone read the brilliant Russian books called The Ringing Cedars: - The Love For Life Website Homepage also provides lots of inspiring remedy based information: - If you want to be kept up to date with our work please register to the Love For Life Mailing List here: We usually send two postings per month. Presently (September 2011) there are over 7000 registrations reaching over 500,000 readers across Earth. The website now (September 2011) receives up to 12 million hits per month. Since December 2006, over 100 million people have visited the Love For Life website.

Conscious Love Always
Arthur and Fiona Cristian
Love For Life
17th June 2009

The Cristian Family November 2006

Clarification Regarding Our Intentions
Behind The Use Of Donations

The Love For Life website is offered for free without a fee and without any conditions attached. If people are inspired to donate money, then we accept their gift and have provided an avenue for them to support the work we do through Fiona's Paypal or ANZ bank account There is no obligation whatsoever to donate and all are equally welcome to our work and to our "time", whether they donate or not. Over the last 9 years, all the Love For Life work has been put out for free and it has often been donations from supporters that have enabled us to renew the domain name, etc, to keep the website going. While some complain that we have an avenue for donations, others complained when we didn't! Either use it or don't - the choice is yours.

Since Love For Life started March 2005 and website December 2006, Arthur has worked 16 hours a day, 7 days a week unpaid for much of this period, putting together the website and sharing insights to wake people up to what has been done to them, whether through the 11,500+ individual articles, videos, podcasts, debates, discussions, pdf's, research documents, etc, found amongst the 8,500+ posts, as well as helping many, many men and women over the phone, and through email, website correspondence, Facebook and YouTube, and creating the Love For Life food forest vege garden and Love For Life music recording studio. This is our life is a gift commitment to serve MAN/Nature/Earth but we are still severely compromised by "The System" and still have to give to Caesar what is claimed to belong to Caesar, which is where the donations help us.

Fiona & Arthur Cristian
Love For Life
21st July 2014