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Until the late 1990s, the Australian government fully owned Australia’s telephone network and the communications carrier, Telecom (today privatised and called Telstra). Telecom held the monopoly on communications and let the network deteriorate into disrepair. When four small business owners had severe communication problems, they went into arbitration with Telstra. The arbitrations were a sham: the appointed arbitrator not only allowed Telstra to minimise the Casualties of Telstra (COT) members’ claims and losses, but the arbitrator also bowed down to Telstra and let the carrier run the arbitrations. Telstra committed serious crimes during the arbitrations yet, up to this day, the Australian government and the Australian Federal Police have been unable to hold Telstra, or the other entities involved in this deceit, accountable. 

Had anyone in Australia other than Telstra done what they did during the COT arbitrations they would have faced multiple charges, including attempting to pervert the course of justice, destruction of evidence, fabricating evidence, interfering with witnesses and several counts of unlawful entry (see C A V Part 1, 2 and 3)

Most (maybe even all) of the COT Cases would indeed have been able to walk away from their businesses with sadness if they had lost that business through fire, or flood, or any other of life's tragedies. But losing a business because the government allowed Telstra to have done what they did (see above and below) including appointing an ungraded inexperienced arbitrator who, during those arbitrations, sat for his grading exams to become a graded arbitrator with the Institute of Arbitrators Australia but failed those exams has been the most challenging aspect for the COT Cases to live with.

How do you publish such an event and make the reader understand the trauma suffered after losing your business because the government appointed unscrupulous and incompetent lawyers, accountants and technical consultants whose main aim of those arbitrations was to benefit themselves at your expense? (see Corruption in Arbitration 1Corruption in Arbitration 2 and Chapter 9 - Read about our dealings with).

How do you publish an accurate account of what has happened during various Australian Government-endorsed Arbitrations without attaching the exhibits to support those facts, as we have been forced to do because the corruption within the government bureaucracy is so rife?  How does the author prove that government public servants fed legally sensitive, privileged information to the then Australian Government-owned telecommunications carrier (the defendants) but also concealed the same documentation from the claimants and, in doing so, severely disadvantaged the claimant's claim? (See Australian Federal Police Investigations 1 and 2  Australian Federal Police Investigations).

How do you tell a story so unbelievable that even the author doubts the authenticity of what they are writing until they check their records before continuing with the story? How do you expose collusion between arbitrators, appointed government watchdogs (umpire), and defendants?  How do you expose that the defendants in an arbitration process (the once Government owned telecommunications carrier) used equipment connected to their network, screened faxed material leaving your office, stored it, without your knowledge or consent, before redirecting it onto to its intended destination?

The defendants (the Telstra Corporation) were using this screened material to benefit their arbitration defence to the detriment of the claimants.

How many other Australian arbitration processes have been subjected to this hacking?  Is this electronic eavesdropping, this hacking into in-confidence documentation, still happening today during legitimate Australian arbitration?  In January 1999, the arbitration claimants provided the Australian Government with a report confirming that confidential, arbitration-related documents were secretly and illegally screened before they arrived at Parliament House Canberra: will that report ever be released to the Australian public?

That fax interception report has now been released in full on in the following two links Australian Federal Police Investigations  and Chapter 4 - Government spying.

Who within the Telstra Corporation tampered with the TF 200 telephone after it left my office on route to Telstra's laboratories? 

Clicking on the caption of Ziggy Switkowski AO will have you asking, why him? Why would such a great Australian icon cover up this TF200 crime? Who had the power to pursuade Ziggy to ignore this evidence?

Absent Justice - Concealing A Crime

Tampering with evidence 

This sort of tampering with evidence, after a claimant has provided it to an arbitration process, including (again, in my case) changing that evidence into a different format, must really be one of the worst crimes a defendant (in this case, the Telstra corporation) could have committed against an Australian citizen.  So why, when evidence of this tampering was provided – twenty years ago to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (John Pinnock), the Chair of the TIO’s Counsel (The Hon Tony Staley), the Chair of the Telstra Board (David Hoare), and Telstra’s then-CEO (Ziggy Switkowski AO), was that evidence not investigated immediately?

After all, it was Telstra’s own internal investigations that uncovered this unlawful conduct during my arbitration, but that didn’t stop Ziggy Switkowski from accepting an "Order of Australia" award in 2014) even though he has sat on this crime for more than two decades. 

Why didn’t the Telstra board act on the evidence as soon as they discovered my claims were true?  Why didn’t they immediately remove that evidence from their arbitration defence of my claims as soon as their internal investigation unit had clarified that Telstra had indeed acted outside of the law as exhibits Open Letter File Nos/3637 and File No/38 show? This clearly raised a most important question:  why has the Telstra Board not advised the current Australian government that Telstra has both a legal and a moral obligation to rectify these wrongs as soon as possible? 

Perhaps the most important aspect of the exposure of this fraud is that the findings from Telstra’s internal investigation into this matter also show that, although the phone was collected from my premises on 27 April 1994, it was not tested until 10 May 1994, a sixteen-day time-lapse that appears to have been the reason for this internal review of their arbitration defence on this matter. The findings of that arbitration review describe how the second series of tests were actually carried out between 24 and 26 May 1994, and those tests proved that wet beer (and wet coca-cola) that had been deliberately poured into my telephone, had all dried out within forty-eight hours, a fact that totally contradicts the so-called ‘evidence’ first provided by Telstra)?


The corruption and fraudulent conduct during the COT arbitrations did not stop with the tampered with TF 200 touchphone. Click on the TF200 below and learn more about the two-faces of Telstra.

Absent Justice - TF200 EXICOM telephone

It is clear from our Tampering With Evidence page that not only did Telstra set out to discredit me by implying I was just too tired to have my TF200 phone tested, but after Telstra removed the phone, it was tampered with before it arrived at Telstra’s Melbourne laboratories: someone from Telstra poured beer into the phone. In its arbitration defence report, Telstra then alleged that sticky beer was the cause of the phone’s ongoing lock-up problems, not the Cape Bridgewater network.


I fought the fire the previous evening from 6 pm to 9 am the following morning.


Another disturbing side to this tapering with arbitration evidence by Telstra is that I was a volunteer for many years before this tampering occurred for the Cape Bridgewater Country Fire Authority (CFA). The following chapters show that during my arbitration, Telstra twisted the reason I could not be present for the testing of my TF200 telephone at my premises on a scheduled meeting on the morning of 27 April 1994. Telstra only reported in their file notes (later submitted to the arbitrator) that I refused to allow Telstra to test the phones because I was tired. There was no mention in these file notes that I advised the fault response unit that I had been fighting an out-of-control fire for 14 hours or that my sore eyes made it impossible to observe such testing by Telstra. I fought the fire the previous evening from 6 pm to 9 am the following morning.

Corrupt and devious 

Who are we?

Absent Justice was set up in an attempt to publish a true account of what really happened during the various Australian Government endorsed arbitrations with Telstra in April 1994. We are a group of Australians who call themselves the Casualties of Telstra (CoT). This website stands as a testament to the unlawful conduct we were exposed to.

This is the story of a group of ordinary small-business people fighting one of the largest companies in the country. The story of how for years Telstra failed to fix the many phone problems that were affecting the capacity of the COT Four to run their businesses, telling them ‘No fault found,’ when document|1659][], show they were found to have existed as reported by AUSTEL (the then Government Communications Regulator. 

AUSTEL’s Adverse Findings, at points 2, to 212, were compiled after AUSTEL the government communications regulator investigated my ongoing telephone problems. Government records (at page 7 (see Absentjustice-Introduction File 495 to 551) show AUSTEL’s adverse findings were provided to Telstra (the defendants) one month before Telstra and I signed our arbitration agreement. I did not get a copy of these findings until 23 November 2007, 12 years after the conclusion of my arbitration. For AUSTEL government bureaucrats to have allowed me to commence a thirteen-month arbitration proceeding against Telstra, costing me over $300.000.00 in arbitration fees, trying to prove something that the government had already established against Telstra was an abuse of process.

Who We Are
Absent Justice Ebook

Read Alan’s book
‘Absent Justice’

In Alan Smith’s book he shows us the twisting path of government arbitration,
the ways it can go wrong and how to make sure it doesn’t go wrong for you...


All of the main events as quoted in this unbelievable true crime story are supported by copies of the original freedom of Information documents on Alan's website

Without those documents, most people would really struggle to believe that public officials and their lawyers committed the illegal offences they did.

Using the acquired evidence that can be downloaded from is possibly a world first.


Read About Our Dealings With

Absent Justice Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3
Absent Justice Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3

Learn about horrendous crimes and unscrupulous criminals, corrupt politicians and the lawyers who control the legal profession in Australia. Shameful, foul, atrocious, monstrous, hideous, and treacherous are just a few words that describe these lawbreakers.

Senate Evidence
Senate Evidence

The criminal delinquency of those involved in the COT Cases corrupted arbitrations continued to practive their evil and crooked style of justice on other citizens who, like the Casualties of Telstra have had their lives ruined.

An Injustice to the remaining 16 Australian citizens
An Injustice to the remaining 16 Australian citizens

This type of skulduggery is treachery, a Judas kiss with dirty dealing and betrayal. This is dirty pool and crookedness and dishonest. This conduct fester’s corruption. It is as bad, if not worse than double-dealing and cheating those who trust the ground you walk on. Sheer Evil.<

Australian Federal Police Investigations
Australian Federal Police Investigations
The dishonest double-dealing and unscrupulous deceit and deception festered the COT Cases arbitrations where profiteering was nothing less than North American payola. Fraud and misconduct were rampant.
Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman
Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman

Check out our bribery and Corruption part 1 and Corruption part 2. Deception, fraudulent conduct and thuggery are criminal legal abuse that can not be tolerated. It is worse than unscrupulous and treacherous evilness. 


C A V Part 1, 2 and 3
C A V Part 1, 2 and 3
Sadly, corruption and collusive practices are rife in the Australian ‘Establishment’ and this terrible situation prevents us from telling our story in a brief way. We had no alternative but to produce the way we have here.

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“…the very large number of persons that had been forced into an arbitration process and have been obliged to settle as a result of the sheer weight that Telstra has brought to bear on them as a consequence where they have faced financial ruin if they did not settle…”

Senator Carr

My Story - Absent Justice

My Story

My name is Alan Smith.

This is the story of my battle with a telecommunications giant and the Australian Government, a battle that has twisted and turned, since 1992, through elected governments, government departments, regulatory bodies, the judiciary, and the Australian telecommunications giant, Telstra, or Telecom, as it was known when this story started.

Other independent business people similarly affected by poor telecommunications have joined me on my journey. We are known as the Casualties of Telstra, or the COT cases. The quest for justice continues to this day.

My story started in 1987 when I decided my life at sea, where I had spent the previous 20 or so years, was over. I needed a new land-based occupation to see me through to my retirement years and beyond.

Of all the places in the world I had visited, I chose to make Australia my home.

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“All that is required for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing”

– Edmund Burke