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Tampering With Evidence

INTRODUCTION 

PLEASE NOTE:  In Tampering With Evidence File No 13, at point 5.8 (a) in the arbitrators findings the words “or damaging the equipment by spilling a liquid into it”, which was in the arbitrators draft findings which was also the mirrored statement used by Telstra in their falsified TF200 report have been removed.

This indicates that, when Dr Hughes (arbitrator to my case) used those words (“or damaging the equipment by spilling a liquid into it) in the draft of my award, he had clearly not read my submission regarding my TF200 EXICOM telephone because that submission recorded the many flaws in Telstra’s original, fraudulently-manufactured TF200 report, which falsely stated that a ‘sticky substance, possibly beer’ had been spilt into the phone and it was that ‘substance’ that had caused my phone to lock up (see below).

Tampering With Evidence File No 14, on page 28, at point 5.8 (a) suggests however that Dr Hughes had read my TF200 EXICOM report on this issue, even though he then refused my request to employ Mr Paul Westwood, a document researcher from Canberra, even though I had offered to pay for Mr Westwood’s services and even though he had already provided his qualifications and signed the arbitration confidentiality agreement.

By 5 May 1995, I had made several unsuccessful attempts to submit two small submissions to the arbitrator, Dr Hughes, via the Golden Messenger courier service, but Dr Hughes refused to accept them.  Those two submissions were based on 24,000 FOI documents I had received, from Telstra, too late to use them in the arbitration process.  My submissions included my explanation of why Telstra’s TF200 EXICOM report had been deliberately and falsely concocted to stop the arbitration resource unit from investigating the 055 267230 service line that my previous TF200 EXICOM phone had been connected to and which the second TF200 EXICOM was also connected to, because the second phone was now causing the same lock-up problems that Telstra claimed had been caused, in the first phone, by the allegedly ‘wet and sticky’ substance that Telstra technicians had allegedly discovered, when they had ‘examined’ it, eleven months earlier.

Tampering with legal evidence after it has been provided to an arbitration process for assessment is a serious crime: in my case, that illegal tampering included the introduction of a foreign substance into my telephone after Telstra had collected it from my premises and then the production of a deliberately falsified report about that phone, which was then submitted to the arbitrator during my official arbitration process, supposedly conducted under the ambit of the Victoria (Australia) Arbitration Act 1984.  If this is not a crime, then what is?

Absent Justice - Cape Bridgewater Bay

When I phoned AUSTEL’s Cliff Mathieson, a public servant at the government communications regulatory department, to talk about this hang-up fault on 26 April 1994, Mr Mathieson suggested he and I conduct a series of tests on the phone line. He planned for me to hang up and count aloud, from one to 10, while he listened. This first test proved he could hear me count right up to 10. He suggested we try it again and count even further this time. Still the same situation: he could hear me right through the range as I counted. Then he suggested I switch the phone on that line with a phone connected to another. I did this, and we repeated the counting test with the same results. It was apparent to both that the fault was not in the phone itself, but somewhere in the Telstra network. Mr Mathieson suggested that, as I was in arbitration then, I should bring this fault to the attention of Peter Gamble, Telstra’s chief engineer. Lindsay White, a Telstra whistleblower, named Peter Gamble, in a Senate estimates committee hearing, as the man who said he and Telstra had to stop the first COT five claimants (including me), at all cost, from proving our claims (see:- pages 36 and 38 Senate - Parliament of Australia Front Page Part One File No/23 dated 24 June 1997).

Unaware of these orders to stop us five COT cases (at all cost), I switched the phones back to their original lines and phoned Mr Gamble, but did not tell him Mr Mathieson and I had already tested two phones on the 055 267230 line. Mr Gamble and I then performed similar tests on the 055 267230 line. Mr Gamble said he would arrange for someone to collect the phone for testing on the following day. FOI K00941, dated 26 March 1994, show someone (name redacted) believed this lock-up fault was caused by a problem in the RCM exchange at Cape Bridgewater see Tampering With Evidence File No 1-A to 1-C. Document K00940, dated the day the tests were performed with Mr Mathieson and Mr Gamble, suggests that Mr Gamble believed the problem was caused by heat in the exchange see (File No-B) where document folio R37911, states:

“This T200 is an EXICOM and the other T200 [which was connected to my 267267 line] is an ALCATEL, we thought that this may be a design ‘fault???’ with the EXICOM so Ross tried a new EXICOM from his car and it worked perfectly, that is, released the line immediately on hanging up. We decided to leave the new EXICOM and the old phone was marked and tagged…” (see File No 1-C).

On 27 April 1994, Telstra collected my so-called faulty TF200 EXICOM telephone. Documents I later acquired, under FOI, show Telstra was aware this telephone fault often occurred in moisture-prone areas like Cape Bridgewater and they also knew that the local exchange suffered from heat problems. When I received my copy of Telstra’s 12 December 1994 defence of my government-endorsed arbitration process, I found it included a 29-page report titled TF200 (File 634, AS-CAV Exhibits 589 to 647). This document reported that Telstra’s laboratory testing showed that the lock-up problem with my service lines was due to my TF200 phone.

Six years after my arbitration was supposed to have fixed this problem, I discovered this lock-up issue was not fixed, even though Telstra claimed to investigate it on 27 April 1994. At this time, they disconnected the EXICOM TF200 phone from the fax machine. They replaced it with another EXICOM TF200, which remained connected to the fax machine until August 2001, when Telstra and I tested the 55 267230 lines again and proved it was still locking up.

As discussed below, photographs included in Telstra’s report show the outside of the phone was very dirty (File 636, 637 and 638  AS-CAV Exhibits 589 to 647). According to the laboratory technicians, the inside was wet and sticky when they opened the phone. Analysis of the substance showed that it was beer, and the conclusion was that beer caused the hookswitch to lock up. The obvious implication here was that my drinking habits were the cause of all my phone problems. The laboratory technicians appeared not to know that the government communications regulatory department and I had already tested two phones on that line and still found the same fault.

Telstra FOI folio D01026/27 (Tampering With Evidence File No 2) confirms Telstra knew there were lock-up problems in moisture-prone areas affecting the EXICOM T200s manufactured after week seven of 1993. This document confirms one of the known lock-up side effects of this problem was that, while the line was in locked-up mode, the line remained open so one party could hear the room noise of the locked-up party after the call was supposedly terminated. Document D01026 confirms that instead of destroying these faulty EXICOM phones, Telstra allowed their technical staff to re-deploy some 45,000 phones back into service in areas where local technicians believed moisture was not a problem.

During my government-endorsed arbitration, I received Telstra document FOI folio number R37911 under FOI. This document shows that on the day after retrieving the TF200, Ross Anderson, a Telstra technician from Portland, tested the TF200 EXICOM fax phone at least 18 times without it once displaying this lock-up fault. Telstra FOI document folio K00942/3 Tampering With Evidence File No/1-C suggests the lock-up problem could have been related to heat, moisture, or a combination of both. There is no mention in this document suggesting that alcohol spillage might have caused this problem.

Absent Justice - TF200 EXICOM telephone

After Mr Anderson completed his testing on 27 April, the phone took nine days to reach Telstra’s laboratory. It arrived on 6 May and laboratory testing did not commence for another four days. Ray Bell, the author of the TF 200 report, was adamant at point 1.3, under the heading Initial Inspection, that:

“The suspect TF200 telephone when received was found to be very dirty around the keypad with what appeared to be a sticky substance, possibly coffee.” (See Tampering With Evidence File No 3)

A second photo I received under FOI is a photo taken from the front of the same TF200 phone, confirming a note I placed on the phone was quite clean when it was received at Telstra see Open Letter File No/37  exhibits 3, 4, 5 and 6. Who within Telstra smeared grease or dirt over the front keypad of the TF200 phone as these three photos show was the case (File 636, 637 and 638  AS-CAV Exhibits 589 to 647).

This report raises some questions. When the phone left my office, it was quite clean. Why did it arrive at the laboratory in such a filthy state? How did the beer get inside the phone? Who would have a reason to pour beer into the phone and why? If the addition of beer was not deliberate, how did it get inside the phone? The main aim of Telstra’s submitted report, used as evidence, was to prove Telstra’s service was not at fault.

As soon as I read this beer-in-the-phone report, I requested the arbitrator to see a copy of all the laboratory technician’s handwritten notes so he could see how Telstra had actually arrived at their conclusion. I had appointed my own forensic document researcher to look over the documents when I received them and he provided me with his CV credentials as well as signing a confidentiality agreement (refer to File 635, AS-CAV Exhibits 589 to 647, stating he would not disclose his findings to anyone outside of the arbitration procedure. Although I passed all this information on to the arbitrator, the only response I received from the arbitrator and Telstra was a duplicate copy of the report I had already received as part of Telstra’s defence.

On 28 November 1995, six months after my arbitration ended, I received Telstra’s TF200 EXICOM report. This report confirms Telstra carried out two separate investigations of my EXICOM TF200 telephone, two weeks apart, and the second test report, dated between 24 and 26 May 1994, proved that the first one, the report provided to the arbitrator, was not a true account of the testing process at all, but a total fabrication. Photos and graphs by Telstra laboratory staff proved wet beer introduced into the TF200 phone dried out completely in 48 hours. As mentioned above, Telstra collected my phone from my business on 27 April 1994, but it was not tested until 10 May – a gap of 14 days. Various pages (see Tampering With Evidence File No/5) confirm that, even though Telstra knew its second investigation proved the first arbitration report, dated between 10 and 12 May 1994, was more than fundamentally flawed, it still submitted the first flawed report to the arbitrator as Telstra’s true findings.

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?

Absent Justice - A disturbing twist

Another disturbing side to this tapering with arbitration evidence by Telstra is that I was a volunteer for the Cape Bridgewater Country Fire Authority (CFA) for many years before this tampering took place. 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 during 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.

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. This one wicked deed, along with the threats I received from Telstra during my arbitration, is a testament that my claims should have been investigated years ago. So, even though I carried out my civic duties as an Australian citizen, over and beyond by supplying vital evidence to the AFP and fighting out-of-control fires, I was still penalised on both occasions during my arbitration.

The other twist to this part of my story is, how could I have spilt beer into my telephone, as Telstra's arbitration defence documents state, when I had been fighting an out-of-control fire? I certainly would not have been driving the CFA truck (which I was the driver for at least three of the fourteen hours I was on duty) or assisting fire buddies (back burning setting up a fire break) had I been drinking beer. This incident is more of the same type of conduct the COT Cases have been dealing with for years.

 

Reading this part of our story will give the reader some idea of the dreadful conduct that we COT Cases had to put up with from Telstra as we battled for a reliable phone service.

And then, as if all this unaddressed skulduggery and secret plotting had not been difficult enough to live with for these past twenty-eight or more years, let us take a look at the senior Telstra engineer who organised the removal of my tampered-with TF200 phone and then arranged for it to be held in his office from that day, 27 April 1994, until 6 May 1994, when it finally reached Telstra’s laboratories.

This TF200 EXICOM falsified report was also used to destroy my credibility by the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman when writing to Laurie James, President of the Institute of Arbitrators Australia refer to Chapter 3 - The Sixth Damning Letter - Part 2.

Absent Justice Ebook

Blowing the whistle 

Absent Justice - Hon Malcolm Fraser

While in the midst of my arbitration case against the Telstra Corporation, I stumbled upon a freedom of information release by Telstra. The release disclosed that Telstra had documented and redacted my phone conversations with former Prime Minister of Australia Malcolm Fraser see page 12 → Australian Federal Police Investigation File No/1. During those phone conversations, I expressed my concerns that Australia was providing wheat to China in 1967 despite being aware that China was redirecting it to North Vietnam. I'm curious to know how the interception of my telephone conversations during the arbitration proceedings in 1993 and 1994 with Malcolm Fraser is related to my exposure to the government on 18 September 1967 that Australia was trading with the enemy. 

What intrigues me is the reason behind documenting a seemingly harmless conversation about Australia's wheat selling to China while being aware that China was supplying wheat to North Vietnam during a conflict with Australia, New Zealand and the United States. I am confident there must be a significant motive behind this, and I am determined to uncover it.

It's difficult to fathom the extent of harm inflicted on the young Australian, New Zealand, and United States service members by North Vietnam soldiers who were fueled by the wheat supplied to them by their communist Chinese supporters. Sadly, many of these brave service people lost their lives or were left with permanent injuries.

1.     In September of 1967, I brought to the attention of the Australian government that a portion of the wheat allocated to the People's Republic of China on humanitarian grounds was being redirected to North Vietnam during the Vietnam War Chapter 7- Vietnam - Vietcong

2.    Who else in the Australian government was aware that Australian wheat intended for a starving communist China was being redirected to North Vietnam to feed the North Vietnamese soldiers before those soldiers marched into the jungles of North Vietnam to kill and maim Australian, New Zealand, and United States of America troops? Refer to Footnote 82 to 85 FOOD AND TRADE IN LATE MAOIST CHINA, 1960-1978, prepared by Tianxiao Zhu, who even reports the name of our ship, the Hopepeak and how the seaman feared for our lives if we were forced to return to China with another cargo of Australian wheat. This wheat was being redeployed to North Vietnam during the period when Australia, New Zealand, and the United States of America fought the Vietnam Cong in the jungles of North Vietnam.   

3.   During the 1960s, the Australian Liberal-Country Party Government engaged in misleading conduct regarding trade with Communist China despite being cognizant that Australian merchant seamen had vehemently refused to transport Australian wheat to China. The grounds for such an objection were their apprehension that the wheat would be redirected to North Vietnam during the North Vietnam War between Australia, New Zealandand the United States of America. The underlying inquiry is to ascertain the government's rationale for deliberately deceiving the general public and jeopardising the country's troops whose lives were being lost in the conflict in North Vietnam.  Murdered for Mao: The killings China 'forgot'

4.    Why didn't Australia's Trade Minister, John McEwen, correctly and honestly advise the people of Australia why the crew of the British ship Hopepeak had refused to take any more Australian wheat to China because they had witnessed its redeployment to North Vietnam during their first visit to China?  

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“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

“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

“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.”

The Hon David Hawker MP

“…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

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