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Chapter Four - The Seventh Damning Letter

Absent Justice - Prologue

On 27 February 1996, John Pinnock wrote to Laurie James (see point 4 above), attacking my credibility. The TIO deliberately misinformed Mr James that I had telephoned the arbitrator’s wife at 2 am one morning:

“Mr Smith has admitted to me in writing that last year he rang Dr Hughes’ home phone number (apparently in the middle of the night, at approximately 2.00am) and spoke to Dr Hughes’ wife, impersonating a member of the Resource Unit.” (See page 3, Arbitrator File No /49)

Who advised the TIO that I telephoned at approximately 2 am? The telephone account for the evening in question (also in Arbitrator File No /49) confirms I called at 8.02 pm. It is bad enough to see the lies told regarding the actual time that I made this telephone call, but it is perhaps even worse to discover that my reason for making that call was concealed from Mr James. I phoned the arbitrator to alert him I had, that day – 28 November 1995 – received vital arbitration documents that I should have received during my arbitration and these documents definitively proved Telstra’s TF200 EXICOM arbitration defence report was manufactured to pervert the course of justice.

It was exciting to read that Telstra staff proved beer could not have stayed wet and sticky for 14 days – the time between the TF200 EXICOM leaving my premises and arriving at their laboratory. It was already evening but, in the heat of the moment, I rang the arbitrator’s home number. His wife answered and told me he was overseas and not due home for some days.

I was caught on the back foot; in my excitement, I had not considered the arbitrator would not answer the phone. I assumed the arbitrator had discussed the Parliament House rumours, concerning his use of a non-credible arbitration agreement that Telstra's lawyers had sectly drafted which had favoured Telstra's arbitration defence to the deteriment of the COT Cases being able to obtain documents under that agreement.

Telstra's lawyers, Freehill Hollingdale & Page, who had secretly faxed this arbitration agreement to the administrator of the process, Warwick Smith, on 10 Jan as well as having secretly devised the "COT Cases Strategy" that stopped the COT Cases from receiving the documents needed to support their arbitration claims (see Prologue Evidence File 1-A to 1-C page 5169 SENATE official Hansard – Parliament of Australia.

I assumed Dr Hughes had discussed this terrible one-sided arbitration agreement he had been forced to use which he had written to Warwick Smith about on 12 May 1995, damning the agreement as not credible but using it anyway to bring down my award. Dr Hughes then changed the agreement which granted the other COT Cases more than thirteen months longer than the agreement had allowed me in which to access my documents from Telstra. 

I thought if Mrs Hughes knew who was calling, she might be afraid I was ringing to accuse the arbitrator. Impulsively, I gave her another name: one I knew the arbitrator was familiar with – that of the FHCA project manager John Rundell. 

Later, I informed the TIO about my exciting find and that I tried to contact the arbitrator to pass on the news. I also explained I gave the arbitrator’s wife the FHCA project manager’s name, instead of my own, to prevent her from being alarmed. I asked him what he would do with this proof that Telstra had fabricated the beer in the phone story. The TIO responded flatly that my arbitration had run its course and he did not intend to involve his office in any further investigation. He said I should go to the Supreme Court of Victoria if I wished to take it further.

If I did write to the TIO, as he alleges in his letter to Laurie James, why didn’t the TIO produce my letter? The reason is, of course, that I never wrote any such letter. Just as deceitful as claiming I wrote such a letter, is the fact that the TIO’s letter to Laurie James was copied to the arbitrator.

Surely the arbitrator would have discussed my telephone call with his wife and been told by her that I had telephoned at 8.02pm and I was, at all times, courteous and respectful.

Did Dr Hughes and John Pinnock allow Dr Hughes’ wife’s name to be used to stop Mr James from uncovering Dr Hughes letter of 12 May 1995 (see Chapter Five)? Or was it to stop Mr James from investigating Telstra’s conjured TF200 report.

There is more to our story and the way in which Dr. Hughes allowed his good wife’s name to be used to stop an investigation into the now proven conjured ‘sticky beer’ substance TF200 Arbitration Report.

I doubt, even now 20-plus years after the event, Dr Hughes’ wife knows he used her to stop a transparent investigation by Laurie James, (then president of the Institute of Arbitrators Australia) into why her husband and John Pinnock (the second TIO) would not investigate the fresh TF200 EXICOM evidence that arrived on 28 November 1995, confirming that 11 months previously Telstra fraudulently manufactured their TF200 EXICOM arbitration report. I am sure Mrs Hughes would be alarmed that John Pinnock deceived Mr James by advising I wrote to him stating I telephoned Dr Hughes at 2.00 am when no such letter ever existed. John Pinnock’s letter, dated 27 February 1996, was also copied to her husband. Why did Dr. Hughes allow such a letter to be sent when he must have known I did not telephone his wife at 2.00 am at all: I telephoned at 8:02 pm to tell Dr Hughes what this fresh evidence finally revealed (see Tampering With Evidence).

This tampering with evidence after it left my premises raises a most important question: why has the Australian government not advised the Telstra board that Telstra have both a legal and moral obligation to rectify these as a matter of public interest because this tampering with evidence, during a litigation process, was committed when the Australian Government and its people owned the Telstra Corporation.

It is bad enough to have to live with the knowledge that the Arbitration Resource Unit, and the Arbitrator, failed to investigate my complaints of the multiple, ongoing telephone problems that continued to haunt my struggling business throughout my arbitration process, but the situation becomes even worse when you consider what was to come when John Pinnock (the new administrator of the process) who also held the role of TIO advised Australian politicians that all of the problems I was still complaining about had been fixed during the arbitration, even though Mr Pinnock (the new TIO) were actually still receiving correspondence from Telstra, thirty-three months after my arbitration had ended, claiming that it ‘appeared’ as though the problems had continued to occur after the so-called ‘end’ of my arbitration.  What this does highlight however is a clear indication of how corrupt the whole COT arbitration process was: it had been designed, from the very beginning to cover-up Telstra’s bad workmanship, regardless of the cost, and the cost of that cover-up was the destruction of anyone who was prepared to stand up and raise legitimate complaints, with the Government, in relation to Telstra, on any level.

Let us look at this 27 February 1996 letter from Mr Pinnock and the tampering with vidence issue namely the TF200 again.  

The marked Telstra FOI documents folio A64535 to A64562 (see Tampering With Evidence File No/5), are clear evidence that Telstra did do two separate TF200 tests on my collected phone two weeks apart. FOI folio A64535 confirms with this handwritten Telstra laboratory file note, dated 26 May 1994, that when wet beer was poured into a TF200 phone the wet substance dried up within 48 hours. The air vents within the phone itself allowed for the beer to escape. In other words, how could my TF200, collected on 27 April 1994, have been wet inside the phone on 10 May 1994 when it was tested at Telstra’s laboratories?

A second look at Telstra’s doctored technical report i.e.;

Absent Justice - Telstras Doctored Technical Report

This sort of tampering with evidence, after a claimant has provided it to an arbitration process, must really be one of the worst crimes a defendant (in this case, the Telstra corporation) could commit against an Australian citizen. So why, when evidence of this tampering was provided – 18 years ago (see Open Letter File Nos/3637 and File No/38) to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman, John Pinnock, the chair of the TIO counsel, The Hon Tony Staley, the chair of the Telstra board, David Hoare and Telstra’s then-CEO Ziggy Switkowski AO – was it not investigated immediately? After all, it was Telstra’s own internal investigations, after the initial report, which uncovered this unlawful conduct during my arbitration, but that didn’t stop Ziggy Switkowski from accepting an Order of Australia award in 2014 despite sitting on this crime for more than 18 years now. Ziggy Switkowski and the new Telstra CEO Andrew Penn and chair John Mullins have a moral and legal obligation to investigate the criminal misconduct committed by previous employees during my litigation with Telstra.

The conclusion of Telstra’s original arbitration TF200 defence report, prepared and signed off by Telstra, states:

“The cause of the fault condition has been confirmed by Telecom Research to be due to the presence of a foreign substance possibly beer inside the telephone case which directly caused the incorrect operation of the telephone membrane hookswitch. When the hookswitch was removed from the foreign substance, the telephone operated correctly.

“The state of the telephone when received suggested that the telephone was not well cared for by the customer.

“If the customer had reported the liquid spillage when it occurred the telephone would have been replaced under standard maintenance procedures with no resultant loss of business.”

A drop of silicon 

Telstra eventually sold two containers of T200s as scrap to Liberty USA Pty Ltd, who in turn moisture proofed the phones with silicon and resold them to Poland. The person who secured the lucrative deal to sell these faulty TF200s was John Tuczynski, managing director of Liberty Australia Pty Ltd, who was also an ex-Polish national, like Mr Switkowski.

Absent Justice -Absent Justice - T200s

Mr Tuczynski’s method, using silicon on TF200 hookswitches to moisture-proof the phones, was a technique Telstra did not know. This could have saved the corporation a lot of money and EXICOM customers years of heartache. Remember, the Australian government and its citizens owned the Telstra Corporation at this time, but instead of looking for a solution to fix the EXICOM problem, Telstra decided it was easier and cheaper to tamper with the TF200s and blame the customer for any faults.

Had John Pinnock not written this 27 Fevruary 1996 letter to Laurie James and Dr Hughes had stopped this letter he knew was false from being supplied to Laurie James President of the Institute of Arbitrators all my arbitration unresolved issuse would have been seen in a different light as they have been these past two decades. 

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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

“…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

“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

“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

“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

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

– Edmund Burke