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Chapter 7 TIO Lies Fraud Deception

The COT Cases had no chance of a fair hearing

Absent Justice - Violated Rights

The arbitrator who deliberated on my claim was not a registered graded arbitrator  

 

The following legal research paper  https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2817646 where you will find there are others, not just the COT cases, who see loopholes in the justice given out by some of the Telecommunication Industry Ombudsman staff when acting as administrators to the COT arbitrations. Often, these ombudsman staff needed to be registered graded arbitrators when they made vital legal arbitration decisions. Yet, the Australian Establishment gave them the right to decide arbitration legal issues, which have – in many cases, as our story shows – ruined the lives of those who participated in the arbitrations.

Please read our Casualties of Telstra TIO administered arbitrations.

 

The Senate Estimates Committee Hansard, gives good argument that neither, Telstra Ted Benjamin, Chris VonWiller or Graeme Ward should have been on the TIO Board and Council during the COT arbitrations when the progress of each of the COT arbitrations were discussed. (GS-CAV Exhibit 89 to 154(b) - See GS-CAV 124-B) confirms that Telstra's Ted Benjamin – admitted that he did not declare his conflict of interest during the TIO Council meetings.

The COT arbitrations illustrate that corruption in arbitration is much more than just bribery, threats and concealment of discovery. Corporate crime does not usually involve a bag of money. The awarding of advancement in the Establishment is worth millions for those that allowed this crime to happen.

 

The awarding of advancement in the Establishment is worth millions

Absent Justice - My Story - Parliament House Canberra

Corporate crime does not usually involve a bag of money.

 

On 26 September 1997, Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman John Pinnock formally addressed a Senate estimates committee refer to page 99 COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA - Parliament of Australia and  Prologue Evidence File No 22-D). He noted:

“In the process leading up to the development of the arbitration procedures – the claimants were told clearly that documents were to be made available to them under the FOI Act.

“Firstly, and perhaps most significantly, the arbitrator had no control over that process, because it was a process conducted entirely outside the ambit of the arbitration procedures.”

There is no amendment attached to any agreement, signed by the first four COT members, allowing the arbitrator to conduct those particular arbitrations entirely outside the ambit of the arbitration procedure – and neither was it stated that he would have no control over the process once we had signed those individual agreements. How can the arbitrator and TIO continue to hide under a confidentiality clause in our arbitration agreement when that agreement did not mention that the arbitrator would have no control because the arbitration would be conducted entirely outside the agreed procedure?

 

Questions on Notice (1)

Absent Justice - Senate

The second-appointed TIO continued where the first left off

Although we address this 24 October 1997 letter from the TIO to Ms Pauline Moore, (secretary to the Senate Environment, Recreation, Communications and the Arts legislation committee) elsewhere on absentjustice.com, we can link in another sinister set of ill deeds committed against the COT claimants. This letter, stamped CONFIDENTIAL, includes the following statement:

“The COT Arbitration Procedures contain provisions relating to the confidentiality of the proceedings, which bind the parties. Those provisions also bind the Arbitrators, the Resource Unit, the Special Council and the TIO in my role as Administrator. …

“Accordingly, I ask that the answers given below to the questions on notice be treated as confidential by the Committee and not be published. …

“9.      Yes, from time to time I have received complaints from foundation COT members, concerning a range of matters, including alleged non-compliance with the rules of the Fast Track Arbitration Procedures by Telstra and/or the Arbitrator and/or the Technical and Accounting Resource Unit. …

“10.    Yes, I have refused to provide COT members with a copy of Telstra’s Preferred Rules of Arbitration. A copy of this document was not provided because it was of historical interest only, and the COT members did not advance any argument as to why it was relevant to their arbitration.” (See Senate Evidence File No 14)

The TIO’s insistence that the agreement was not provided to the COT claimants because: “it was of historical interest only, and the COT members did not advance any argument as to why it was relevant to their arbitration”, is a misrepresentation of the truth – to hide the fact that it was Telstra’s arbitration agreement that was used and to protect Telstra, to the detriment of the claimants.

Graham Schorer, as COT spokesperson, first asked for a copy of the Fast Track Proposed Rules of Arbitration sometime before 17 February 1994, so the decision to keep it from the claimants was made at least two months before we signed the final version of the arbitration agreement. It was, therefore, entirely “relevant to their arbitration.” The COT claimants were legally entitled to know whether the arbitration agreement was drafted independently or if the defence crafted it in their favour.

The claimants should have been provided with that original version of the agreement before we signed for arbitration; it should have also been provided during the arbitrations and the arbitration appeal periods. At an official arbitration meeting on 17 February 1994, Mr Schorer said he wanted assurances from the TIO and the arbitrator that the agreement he and the other COT claimants were pressured to sign was not Telstra’s Proposed Rules of Arbitration. Telstra’s own transcript of this meeting (see Senate Evidence File No/48 ) confirms the arbitrator and the TIO special counsel “both stated they had not received this document and had not read it and that it was irrelevant”. Documents (see Senate Evidence File No 6 and File No/49) confirm the arbitrator was provided with (and read) a document called “Telstra Corporation Limited – ‘Fast Track’ Proposed Rules of Arbitration” sometime before 18 January 1994, a whole month before this pre-arbitration hearing on 17 February 1994.

Telstra’s Fast Track Proposed Rules of Arbitration, which the TIO was still refusing to supply us in October 1997, was the same arbitration file that John Wynack, director of investigations in the Commonwealth Ombudsman’s Office, was trying to access from Telstra on my behalf during 1995 to 1997 (discussed above). Powerful people amongst those administering the COT arbitrations wielded power within the establishment to conceal this very important pre-arbitration document.

How can the government, who originally endorsed the first four arbitrations, ignore that we were entitled to receive Telstra’s arbitration rules before we signed our arbitration agreement? Do not forget the TIO’s letter to me, dated 10 January 1996, stating, “I do not propose to provide you with copies of any documents held by this office,” (see Senate Evidence File No/50) – echoing the responses that Graham Schorer and I had received since February 1994, from the previous TIO, when requesting copies of Telstra’s proposed rules of arbitration.

John Pinnock also advised Ms Pauline Moore, Secretary of Senate Environment, Recreation, Communications and the Arts Legislation Committee, that:

“I refer to previous correspondence and discussions with the Committee’s Research Officer, Ms Ducker, concerning a series of questions put on notice by Senator Boswell and arising out of the Committee’s proceedings of 26 September 1997…(GS 318-b)

“The COT Arbitration Procedures contain provisions relating to the confidentiality of the proceedings, which bind the parties. Those provisions also bind the Arbitrators, the Resource Unit, the Special Council and the TIO in my role as Administrator.”

Please note: only Telstra and the COT claimants signed the confidentiality agreement.

Mr Pinnock also notes:

“Accordingly, I ask that the answers given below to the questions on notice be treated as confidential by the Committee and not published:

 In November 1995 I received correspondence from a COT member expressing concern about the Technical Resource Unit. The COT member:

expressed concern that the purchase by Pacific Star of Lane Telecommunications compromised the independence of the Technical Resource Unit;
stated that there were inaccuracies and biases evident in the Lane Telecommunications/DMR Technical Evaluation Report;
requested the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman to dismiss the Resource Unit.

On 6 November 1995 I was advised by Steve Black of Telstra that Lane Telecommunications and Pacific Star had already worked together on several Pacific Star contracts in Queensland and Western Australia and for the Federal Government.”

“Apart from the evidence I gave to the Committee on 26 September 1997 concerning the purchase of Lane Telecommunications by Ericsson Australia. I have recently been advised by one of the Arbitrators (Dr Hughes) that he will be transferring his legal practice to Blake Dawson, Waldron, Solicitors. I am aware that that form is currently acting for Telstra in relation to a number of matters. Arrangements are being made to discuss with Blake. Dawson, Waldron any possible conflicts of interest. …

Perhaps even worse, before Dr Gordon Hughes (the arbitrator) became a partner in the very same legal firm that was defending Telstra concerning their 008/1800 billing problems, the government officially advised the arbitrator that if he was not going to make a finding on my 008/1800 billing faults, then the government would investigate as a matter of public interest.

AUSTEL (now ACMA) advised me in writing years after the conclusion of my arbitration that Dr Hughes ignored this 16 December 1994 letter and on 30 April 1995 disallowed his technical consultants DMR (Canada) and Lane (Australia) the extra weeks they stated was needed to investigate these 008/1800. Five months after the conclusion of my arbitration, the government allowed Telstra to address these previous 008/1800 problems in secret outside the legal arena of the arbitration without allowing me my legal right to challenge Telstra's defence of my 008/1800 arbitration billing faults. 

24th October 1997:  John Pinnock writes to Ms Pauline Moore, Secretary of the Senate Environment, Recreation, Communications and the Arts Legislation Committee, noting:

“I refer to previous correspondence and discussions with the Committee’s Research Officer, Ms Ducker, concerning a series of questions put on notice by Senator Boswell and arising out of the Committee’s proceedings of 26 September 1997…” AS-CAV Exhibit 234 to 281 - GS-CAV 318-B

“The COT Arbitration Procedures contain provisions relating to the confidentiality of the proceedings, which bind the parties. Those provisions also bind the Arbitrators, the Resource Unit, the Special Council and the TIO in my role as Administrator.

Please note: only Telstra and the COT claimants signed the Confidentiality Agreement.

Mr Pinnock also notes:-

“Accordingly, I ask that the answers given below to the questions on notice be treated as confidential by the Committee and not published:

  1. In November 1995 I received correspondence from a COT member expressing concern about the Technical Resource Unit. The COT member:
    • expressed concern that the purchase by Pacific Star of Lane Telecommunications compromised the independence of the Technical Resource Unit;
    • stated that there were inaccuracies and biases evident in the Lane Telecommunications/DMR Technical Evaluation Report;
    • requested the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman to dismiss the Resource Unit.
  2. On 6 November 1995, Steve Black of Telstra advised me that Lane Telecommunications and Pacific Star had already worked together on several Pacific Star contracts in Queensland and Western Australia and for the Federal Government. 

and at points 6, 8, 9 and 10

6. Apart from the evidence I gave to the Committee on 26 September 1997 concerning the purchase of Lane Telecommunications by Ericsson Australia. I have recently been advised by one of the Arbitrators (Dr Hughes) that he will be transferring his legal practice to Blake Dawson, Waldron, Solicitors. I am aware that that form is currently acting for Telstra in relation to a number of matters. Arrangements are being made to discuss with Blake. Dawson, Waldron any possible conflicts of interest. …

Part 2 → Chapter 1- Prior to Arbitration, we question the role of Grant Campbell when he was Manager of the TIO Complaints Department during the early period of 1994 when I was having my Fast Track Settlement Proposal claim documents assessed under that 23 November 1993 agreement 

Interestingly, the 1993/94 TIO Annual Report does not list Mr Campbell as having worked for the TIO office, even though Mr Campbell held a Senior Managerial position with Telstra.

  1. TIO documents dated 9 February 1994 confirm Grant Campbell signing letters on behalf of Warwick Smith, particularly regarding the fax billing and lock-up complaints included in my arbitration claims.
  2. Telstra FOI documents H36271, H36281 and H000027 confirm Grant Campbell addressed the same billing issues on behalf of Telstra’s Customer Response Unit in January and February 1995.  This unit wrote to Dr Hughes on 16th December 1994 to confirm that Telstra advised AUSTEL that they would address Alan Smith’s billing issues as part of their defence of his claim, as per the arbitration agreement.  Alan Smith has always been concerned about Grant Campbell’s handling of Alan’s arbitration material that went through the TIO’s office in 1994/95.
  3. During the early stages of the COT arbitration process, the COT claimants were told that Pia Di Mattina had been seconded from Minter Ellison by the TIO to assist him with the COT arbitration process.  Ms Mattina’s name is not in the TIO 1993/94 employee list included in the 1993/94 Annual Report. Grant Campbell’s name is not included on the employee list either, even though he dealt with several billing issues that Alan Smith raised during his arbitration.

I received GS-CAV Exhibit 448 to 458  - See GS-CAV 448 to 456 on 4th March 2008.

GS-CAV Exhibit 448 to 458  - See 448: around 6th December 1994, Steven Mead, Telstra’s General Counsel, investigated Ken Ivory’s 1800 problems (Ken Ivory was a COT claimant).  At approx. At the same time, Telstra and AUSTEL passed information regarding Alan Smith’s 008/1800 billing problems to Dr Hughes.  Page 8 of this Mails Details Report refers to a separate 164-page report in relation to Solar-Mesh (Ken Ivory’s business) confirming law firm Blank was involved in this matter with Telstra, together with the TIO’s office.

GS-CAV Exhibit 448 to 458  - See  449: another Mails Details Report dated 17th February 1997 also relates to Ken Ivory of Solar-Mesh and confirms (Blank) had an interest in the Ken Ivory/1800 issue.  This document further confirms Telstra’s Ted Benjamin and Graeme Ward were both involved in this particular COT-related 1800 billing problem while, at the same time, Graeme Ward was a member of the TIO Board and Ted Benjamin was a member of the TIO Council (the administrative arm of the COT arbitrations).

GS-CAV Exhibit 448 to 458  - See  450: letter dated 10th July 1995 from Wally Rothwell (Deputy TIO) to Grant Campbell (Telstra), discussing Ken Ivory’s 1800 billing problems.

GS-CAV Exhibit 448 to 458  - See  451: letter dated 15th December 1995 from Ted Benjamin to John Pinnock, confirms they were both aware of the 1800 problems Ken Ivory's experiencing.

GS-CAV Exhibit 448 to 458  - See  452:  letter dated 1st April 1996 from Grant Campbell (Telstra) to Wally Rothwell (Deputy TIO), discusses Ken Ivory’s 1800 billing problems.

GS-CAV Exhibit 448 to 458  - See  453:  an internal Telstra email (FOI folio 000973) dated 5th February 1997 from Philippi Hore to Carmel Parish, discusses Ken Ivory and ex-Telstra employee, Grant Campbell, noting:-

“Quinton advised me that there was an employee who was the main case officer for Ivory in the early stages. The ex-employee’s name is Grant Campbell. Grant then worked as the Deputy Telecommunication Industry Ombudsman and then on a senior management review team.”

This suggests that, after first working for Telstra, Grant Campbell became the Deputy TIO before returning to Telstra.

GS-CAV Exhibit 448 to 458  - See  454:  facsimile cover-dated 10th January 1994 from Grant Campbell to Warwick Smith TIO, notes:-

“Warwick – Two COT-related faxes follow:

  1. Allan Smith [sic] – Cape Bridgewater Holiday Camp
  2. Expression of Interest by Ferrier Hodgson in conjunction with DMR Australia & Dr Gordon Hughes.

GS-CAV Exhibit 448 to 458 - See 455: letter from Grant Campbell dated 9th February 1994 written on behalf of Warwick Smith to Fiona Hills, Telstra’s Manager – Serious Disputes, discusses faxing problems still being experienced by me during his FTSP.

GS-CAV Exhibit 448 to 458 —See 456: A letter from Grant Campbell, dated 13th February 1994, to Fiona Hills, in his capacity as TIO Manager, Enquiries and Complaints, discusses a number of complaints I raised regarding his phone and faxing problems.

GS-CAV Exhibit 448 to 458  - See  454 to 456:  relate to Grant Campbell’s handling of COT case matters while he was TIO Manager of Enquiries and Complaints.

IMPORTANT Food For Thought

During my 23 November 1993 to April 1994 FTSP Commercial Assessment process and then during my April 1994 to May 1995 FTAP arbitration procedure, I was never informed that Grant Campbell defected to Telstra’s Customer Response Unit.

As discussed for the date of 29th December 1997, Dr Hughes wrote to William Hunt on not named legal firm letterhead noting:-

“I noted the following reservations and qualifications expressed by the parties:

(GS-CAV Exhibit 324 to 367  - See GS CAV 344)

Question:

Was Dr Hughes aware, at the time he wrote this letter, that:-

 

How could Warwick Smith (administrator to the arbitration procedure) his media release on 12 May 1995 declaring I (without naming me) received Natural Justice) when on 18 April 1995, he received a letter from his own appointed arbitration project Manager, John Rundell, telling him:  

“Any technical report prepared in draft by Lanes will be signed off and appear on the letter of DMR Inc.” Prologue Evidence File No 22-A

The first four COT claimants, Ann Garms, Maureen Gillan, Graham Schorer and (me) were never told about these "forces at work" during our designated appeal processes. We should have been warned that ex-Telstra employee Lanes would prepare the technical reports against Telstra (as the following evidence shows what took place: 6-4-95 Lane Draft Report (4-A). DMR Group Inc. was covertly flown out from Canada to only sign off on Lane's findings.

If signing off a report as your own report or allowing someone to do this by removing their letterhead and placing their concocted report on the letterhead of another company letterhead before it is submitted to an arbitrator as the final report, as was in the case when John Rundell (who operates two arbitration centres, one in Melbourne (Australia) and the other in Hong Kong (China) see Prologue Evidence File No 22-A isn't Misleading and Deceptive Conduct of the worst possible kind, then what is?

Section 52 of the Australian Trade Practices Act (Refer to https://shorturl.at/dz156prohibits corporations from engaging in misleading or deceptive conduct in trade or commerce.

 

PLEASE NOTE:

Warwick Smith, the first Australian Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman who was also the administrator to the COT arbitrations after the COT Cases declined to accept Lane Telecommunications Pty Ltd as the independent arbitration technical consultants as the arbitrator's advisor (because they were ex-Telstra executives) Warwick Smith gave his word in writing on 9 March 1995 that he would appoint DMR Inc (Canada) as the principal technical consultant. Lane would assist only where DMR needed local knowledge.

Chapter 5 - US Department of Justice vs Ericsson of Sweden shows that Lane was not impartial. I again ask the Australian government why Ericsson was allowed to purchase Lane Telecommunications Pty Ltd during an Australian government-endorsed arbitration process in which Telstra was being investigated for knowingly using faulty Ericsson AXE exchange equipment when other countries around the globe were or had removed the deficient AXE equipment from their telephone exchanges?

The following statement by Senator Ron Boswell on 20 September 1995 discusses the failure of the first four COT arbitrations, having been informed by the first four COT Cases that Telstra had still withheld the Ericsson telephone exchange equipment he and Senator Richard Alston had demanded answers to why Telstra was still using the Ericsson AXE faulty equipment. In my case, Senator Richard Alston raised this faulty Ericsson AXE equipment on my behalf on 24 February 1994 in the Senate (Refer to File 10-C Evidence File No/10-A to 10-f)

 

 

The victimization continues 

The following segment is just one of many attached to absentjustice.com, which I created because no one in Australia understood that these events happened during a government-endorsed arbitration. Members of the Telecommunication Industry Ombudsman’s office and the government communications regulator (AUSTEL) have successfully told politicians that my claims are frivolous and that I am a vexatious litigant. However, reading only the first page of absentjustice.com shows that I am neither: I want justice for the COT cases, which were denied natural justice.

John Pinnock was aware the phone problems I raised before my arbitration began continued to haunt my business for years after my arbitration, yet, as Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO), he wrote letters to various politicians stating the arbitrator addressed all of my phone problems during my arbitration, even though his own arbitration resource unit and AUSTEL advised him otherwise. AUSTEL and the defendant (Telstra) addressed some of these arbitration problems, in secret, FIVE MONTHS after the arbitrator refused his arbitration technical consultants the extra weeks they advised were needed to address these matters. (See Chapter One in our Prologue page.

My Story Evidence File 4-I shows that after Telstra visited my business on 14 January 1998 (33 months after my arbitration was declared a roaring success), they concluded the 1800 billing problems raised in my 1994/95 arbitration continued after my arbitration. Why was this January 1998 evidence concealed from the government, which had endorsed my arbitration on the proviso that all of my ongoing telephone problems would be fixed as part of my arbitration? More importantly, John Pinnock was still writing to politicians as late as February 1999 (My Story Evidence File 4-C to 4-E) saying he was still investigating whether the 008/1800 faults had been addressed in my 1994/95 arbitration even though he was fully informed by AUSTEL they had NOT been addressed in my arbitration. As stated above, Chapter One in our Prologue page shows Mr Pinnock was advised by his arbitration consultant on 5 November 1995 that NONE of my billing claims were addressed in my arbitration.

To be clear, despite Mr Pinnock knowing that NONE of my 008/1800 claims were addressed during my arbitration and that AUSTEL allowed Telstra to address them secretly after my arbitration, he was still writing to politicians in February 1999, more than four years later, saying he was unsure whether the issues had been addressed during that process or not. This man is a disgrace for having concealed the truth for so long.

Those unaddressed and ongoing lockup communication faults eventually led to me selling my business in December 2001. Firstly, I was unaware that Telstra found in my favour during its investigations at Cape Bridgewater on 14 January 1994 (see My Story Evidence File 4-A to 4-ISecondly, the TIO and Telstra would not make a proper and transparent finding on my ongoing telephone complaints between June 1995 and August 2001. Thirdly, I had come to believe that Telstra was personally carrying out some vendetta against me, and so expected the problems would stop once the business changed hands. Sadly, however, the new owners inherited the same ongoing problems, eventually leading to them being walked off the property by receivers in August 2009, bankrupt.

While it would be wrong to blame all of the financial problems that the new owners of my business experienced on the telephone problems, the stress of trying to run a telephone-dependent business contributed to the plight of the new owners’ stress. Finally, they just gave up the fight because no one would believe them – yet they were believed, as Telstra documents show. These documents even note that the TIO (John Pinnock) discussed the faults with Telstra because I had also complained of the same faults years before. So all of this going on behind the scenes, as the following FOI documents show My Story Evidence File 4-A to 4-B, was a successful attempt to stop a government investigation into why these ongoing faults were not addressed in the TIO arbitration process set up by the government to address them.

 

Absent Justice - My Story

Questions on Notice (2)

Further issues surround the TIO’s answers to similar Questions on Notice asked by the Senate committee. The TIO’s official response confirms that Ericsson purchased the arbitration main technical consultancy firm, Lane Telecommunications, during the COT arbitrations. All the technical information that I supplied to Lane Telecommunications during my arbitration, confirming the AXE Portland and Cape Bridgewater lockup problems were not just a local problem but a national and international problem, affecting hundreds of exchanges worldwide, was acquired by Ericsson.

At least three other COT claimants also had businesses connected to Ericsson AXE exchanges and their claim material, too, was on Lane’s computer data files when the company was sold.

Australia must be the only country in the Western world that allows a witness (Lane Telecommunications was a witness to what the COT claimants had uncovered) to be purchased during a major litigation process, particularly when even the administrator advised the Senate committee of this, on 26 September 1997 (see Senate Evidence File No/61).

I believe the Hon Malcolm Turnbull, Prime Minister of Australia, and the Hon Senator Mitch Fifield, Minister for Communications, have to answer these questions: How long was Lane Telecommunications in contact with Ericsson, the major supplier of telecommunication equipment to Telstra before Ericsson purchased Lanes? Is there a link between Lanes and DMR ignoring my Ericsson AXE claim documents and the purchase of Lanes by Ericsson during the COT arbitration process?

Food For Thought 

It is clear from AbsentjusticeBrief Summary Part 1 – that Telstra and the TIO should never have installed Grant Campbell (seconded by Telstra) as the Deputy TIO. At the same time, Telstra was the defendants during the COT Fast Track Settlement Proposal / Arbitration procedure.

Chapter Three below shows a seconded Telstra employee, Grant Campbell, signed off known-false information he had conjured in his letter to Telstra concerning my ongoing faxing problems.

The fact that Warwick Smith allowed Grant Campbell to sign off letters on his behalf and, in doing so, minimise Telstra’s liability in my arbitration is beyond contempt when you consider Telstra was the defendant in that arbitration. If, on the other hand, Warwick Smith didn’t give Mr Campbell the authority to sign off FTSP arbitration fault-related correspondence, then who gave that authority?

To have allowed the defendant access to the opposing side’s claim material before the claimant decided which information to submit to the assessor or arbitrator and which to keep back to answer the defendant’s defence was highly undemocratic: how can a Western democracy allow this to happen? Did The Establishment consider this – and that Dr Hughes wrote to Warwick Smith, on 12 May 1995, to advise the arbitration agreement used on my arbitration the day before (see Open Letter File No 55-A) was grossly deficient and needed to be revised, but used it anyway and concealed this letter from me during my appeal period – when awarding Warwick Smith and Dr Hughes medals of honour when each breached his honour before, during and after the COT arbitrations were concluded.?

 

No rule of law

Absent Justice - Telstras FOI Game

The COT Cases were never meant to wholly win their claims

 

By May 1994, one month before I had to submit his claim, the flow of documents had all but dried up, and so AUSTEL and I arranged to go to Melbourne on 14th May 1994 to look at some FOI documents that Telstra stated they would show me, in their offices.

On the 14th May 1994,  I arrived at Telstra’s Exhibition Street FOI viewing room at 9:00 am, as previously arranged, to view FOI documents that Telstra had sent me without schedules.  I introduced to Telstra FOI staff, including George Sutton and Rod Pollock documents which needed to be clarified. A Telstra File note dated April 1993 refers to a phone conversation I had with the former prime minister of Australia, The Hon. Malcolm Fraser. It was the redacted blank information on that document I asked George Sutton and Rod Pollock to proved it had been completly sensored but only referred to me and Malcolm Fraser.  Other documents concerning my conversation with Dr Burnard, my psychologist, had also been censored even though whoever within Telstra had made these comments on this other file note had to have been aware the discussed information was about me.  Rod Pollock informed I had the room until 6 pm.  I also arranged this meeting so I could apply for other material I had requested but not received.

For the first hour, Rod Pollock offered fabricated reasons to explain why documents I had partly received some days before were now heavily censored by blanking out the previously seen information.  During this unpleasant FOI meeting, I received some documents I should have received under my December 1993 and February 1994 FOI requests.  Mr Pollock provided yet further heavily blanked-out documents, including about 56 fax cover sheets, with attached documents.  One of the documents refers to the MELU Exchange that caused my business massive problems between August 1991 and March 1992, so I asked Mr Pollock if he could supply the document without the blanking out.  Mr Pollock left, and I continued to check the documents provided.

I had in my briefcase some of the documents that Telstra had previously supplied to me.  By comparing those documents with these unseen documents, I noticed faxes that were only half received in the past are now not only incomplete but they are attached to documents they had no connection to.  Some of the 56 fax-cover sheets he had seen now have completely different material attached.  Nothing seemed to match.  For example, documents relating to a fault in 1991 were attached to a fault record dated 1993 that stated no fault had been found.  I was so alarmed at this discovery that I phoned Detective Superintendent Jeff Penrose of the Australian Police and described the situation.  I prepared a Statutory Declaration and provided it to both the TIO and the arbitrator at his suggestion. (GS-CAV Exhibit 155 to 215 - See GS-CAV 189-A)

The following file note dated 16th May 1994, which I received late in December 2001 (under the TIO policy Privacy Act), confirms my visit to the TIO's office (two blocks from Telstra House) and my request for a witness to accompany me back to the Telstra viewing room to see the altered documents for themselves. Exhibit GS-CAV Exhibit 155 to 215 - See GS-CAV 189-A marked Warwick and URGENT confirms I left some of the censored/blanked FOI documents with the deputy TIO, Sue Harlow. In this document's last paragraph, the deputy TIO, Sue Harlow, refers to the proof I left confirming Telstra altered information on the supplied documents, noting, "He left an example of this with us (also attached)."

Even though the TIO acted as an administrator to my arbitration, the TIO officer, Sue Harlow, refused to send anyone back with me to see why the defendants in my arbitration were blatantly breaching the rules of discovery and the FOI Act. One of the documents I provided to Sue Harlow had the wording of around two lines or more blanked out before -------- the wording ended the sentence peak. I assumed those three sentences referred to the ship I had been on in Communist China, namely the vessel  - Hopepeak. 

Halfway up the redacted page, where sentences had previously been, the name Malcolm Fraser appears. Whoever wrote this file note initially appears (and I am using the word appears) because it is only my guess that this Telstra technician had been listening to my telephone conversation with ex-prime minister Malcolm Fraser.

When I discussed this file note with Detective Superintendent Jeff Penrose of the Australian Police, he showed me a letter from Telstra admitting that the local Portland technician in charge of my cases had been monitoring my phone conversations. Question 81 in the following AFP transcripts Australian Federal Police Investigation File No/1 confirm the AFP told me that the government communications regulator - AUSTEL's John MacMahon, had supplied the AFP evidence my phones had been bugged over and an extended period noting that information supplied it:

"... does identify the fact that, that you were live monitored for a period of time. See we're quite satisfied that, there are other references to it".

I is also shown on pages 12 to 13 on these AFP transcripts that I have discussed the named Malcolm Fraser Australian Federal Police Investigation File No/1 

During my pending arbitration appeal period, I tried to get a copy of Telstra's arbitration file from Telstra and the TIO John Pinnock to see who knew what about my time in Red China.  John Pinnock's letter of 10 January 1996 shows his response to my request for these arbitration records was just more of the distaste his office had for the COT Cases when he stated:

“I refer to your letter of 31 December 1996 in which you seek to access to [sic] various correspondence held by the TIO concerning the Fast Track Arbitration Procedure. …

“I do not propose to provide you with copies of any documents held by this office.” (See Open Letter File No 57-C)

These were the duplicate arbitration files that the Commonwealth Ombudsman had tried to obtain from Telstra between 18 October  1995 and 4 October 1997 (after the conclusion of my arbitration) refer to Files 226,227,228 and 233 - AS-CAV Exhibit 181 to 233).

It is clear from the statements made by Mr John Wynack, Director of Investigations Commonwealth Ombudsman in  AS-CAV Exhibit 181 to 233, that he did not believe Telstra's statement they had destroyed the arbitration file I was requesting. What other issues surrounding my China episode and the failed arbitration process that followed that the government minders did not want broadcast during an appeal process, which is a process open to the public? 

I had been right all along to expose (or try to expose) this unethical trade of grain to China, aware it was being redeployed to North Vietnam to feed Australia's enemy.

 

Forced into arbitration without the necessary documents 

Absent Justice - My Story Senator Alan Eggleston

On 23 March 1999, almost five years after most of the arbitrations had been concluded, the Australian Financial Review (newspaper) reported on the conclusion of the Senate estimates committee hearing into why the COT Cases were forced into a government-endorsed arbitration without the necessary documents they needed to fully support their claims i.e.

Eggleston, Sen Alan – Bishop, Sen Mark – Boswell, Sen Ronald – Carr, Sen Kim – Schacht, Sen Chris, Alston and Sen Richard

 

The above six senators all formally record how those six senators believed that Telstra had ‘acted as a law unto themselves’ throughout all of the COT arbitrations, is incredible. The LNP government knew that not only should the litmus-test cases receive their requested documents, but so should the other 16 Australian citizens who had been in the same government-endorsed arbitration process. An Injustice to the remaining 16 Australian citizens.

The matters discussed on this website absentjustice.com are said according to my interpretation of the  Public Interest Disclosure Act 2013

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Absent Justice - My Story - Senator Ron Boswell

Threats made and carried out.

Page 180 ERC&A, from the official Australian Senate Hansard, dated November 29 1994, reports Senator Ron Boswell asking Telstra's legal directorate why were my FOI documents being withheld from me during my arbitration:

“Why did Telecom advise the Commonwealth Ombudsman that Telecom withheld FOI documents from Alan Smith because Alan Smith provided Telecom FOI documents to the Australian Federal Police during their investigation?”

After receiving a hollow response from Telstra, which the senator, the AFP and I all knew was utterly false, the senator states:

“…Why would Telecom withhold vital documents from the AFP? Also, why would Telecom penalise COT members for providing documents to the AFP which substantiate that Telecom had conducted unauthorised interceptions of COT members’ communications and subsequently dealt in the intercepted information by providing that information to Telecom’s external legal advisers and others?” (Senate Evidence File No 31)

As I have reiterated throughout this website, the threats against me during the arbitration proceedings came to fruition, and the withholding of pertinent documents is deeply concerning. Regrettably, neither the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman nor the government has investigated the detrimental impact of this malpractice on my overall submission to the arbitrator. Despite assisting the Australian Federal Police (AFP) in their investigation into the illicit interception of phone conversations and arbitration-related faxes, they never came to my aid.

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“Only I know from personal experience that your story is true, otherwise I would find it difficult to believe. I was amazed and impressed with the thorough, detailed work you have done in your efforts to find justice”

Sister Burke

“…your persistence to bring about improvements to Telecom’s country services. I regret that it was at such a high personal cost.”

Hon David Hawker

“Only I know from personal experience that your story is true, otherwise I would find it difficult to believe. I was amazed and impressed with the thorough, detailed work you have done in your efforts to find justice”

Sister Burke

“A number of people seem to be experiencing some or all of the problems which you have outlined to me. …

“I trust that your meeting tomorrow with Senators Alston and Boswell is a profitable one.”

Hon David Hawker MP

“…your persistence to bring about improvements to Telecom’s country services. I regret that it was at such a high personal cost.”

The Hon David Hawker MP

“I am writing in reference to your article in last Friday’s Herald-Sun (2nd April 1993) about phone difficulties experienced by businesses.

I wish to confirm that I have had problems trying to contact Cape Bridgewater Holiday Camp over the past 2 years.

I also experienced problems while trying to organise our family camp for September this year. On numerous occasions I have rung from both this business number 053 424 675 and also my home number and received no response – a dead line.

I rang around the end of February (1993) and twice was subjected to a piercing noise similar to a fax. I reported this incident to Telstra who got the same noise when testing.”

Cathy Lindsey

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