STATEMENT OF BRIAN McLAINE – PETER RISDON’S BUSINESS PARTNER
I first met Peter Risdon some six or seven years ago when I was working at a children's playground. Originally I had been working there as a volunteer, but then I was asked to stay on and work permanently for a wage. After a few years, the Senior of the playground left and AT was appointed. I got on well with AT and one day he brought in a chap to the playground called Peter Risdon and introduced me. However, he warned me to be very careful with Risdon and not ever to trust him.
My subsequent association with Peter Risdon was ultimately disastrous for me because he owed me a lot of money. However, I blame myself for this as I should have heeded AT’s warning.
Risdon used to pop in occasionally to the playground, and we became acquaintances. He was minicabbing at the time, and occasionally he used to pop into my flat. When AT left, I was the Deputy Senior of the playground.
Risdon on one occasion told me he had got a job working for a firm called "C.C.S.", which ran the "Counter Spy Shop". This Company, he told me, specialised in electronic bugs, surveillance and counter surveillance activities. Risdon told me at one point that C.C.S. was owned by the Mafia in the United States. Risdon told me that the owner had a nephew who was a gangster or Mafia hitman. Risdon was fascinated by this man. Risdon had often talked about spies and bugs and such like and when he told me that he had joined C.C.S. and what this Company did, I realised that he had found his niche.
So when I moved to H Road, and Risdon came around and tried to persuade me to set up in business with him, telling me that he could take a lot of business with him from C.C.S., I was eventually persuaded. He came to my flat with about thirty-five to forty blue envelopes which he said contained existing contracts with C.C.S. and its customers. Although he was European Operations Manager for C.C.S., he was not highly paid and thought there were great amounts of money to be made in security, surveillance and counter-surveillance. He was extremely enthusiastic about it, and said that he would have no difficulty in setting up in competition to C.C.S. and in other markets.
He came to me I think because he knew I had saved up some money and he needed a partner.
We did subsequently start up in business. An off the shelf company was bought and its name was changed to "Electronic Techniques and Services Ltd." ("E.T.S."). I produce as Exhibit "BMCL/1" a copy of Form ED1AHD, which is the Official Receiver's report containing summary of the Statement of Affairs as at 19 March 1991, the date of the Winding-up Order, submitted by Peter Risdon. I should add that in my view, the reason for the failure of the Company was not, as Risdon apparently stated at Paragraph 6, the failure of its principle source of business, but rather Risdon's failure to pay the Company's creditors despite the fact that the Company or Risdon (the two were interchangeable, as the transactions of the Company were mainly cash based) had enough money to pay its creditors.
Risdon seemed to take delight in not paying his debts and forcing suppliers out
However, I cannot be certain of the real reason for the Company's failure, as I resigned
as a Director in 1990. From the documentation, it appears that I resigned as a
Director as of 2 April 1990.
I produce as Exhibit "BMCL/2" the original Certificate of Incorporation of the company dated 3 March 1989. I produce as Exhibit "BMCL/3" a Memorandum of Heads of Agreement dated 2 April 1990 written by Peter Risdon and signed by me and him. I believe that Risdon drew this document up, without the help of any lawyer.
I produce as Exhibit "BMCL/4" a bundle of correspondence containing my letter of resignation, a letter to Midland Bank PLC signed by Risdon and myself changing the mandate, and Risdon's letter accepting my resignation. Risdon in effect dictated all these letters. I am in possession of them having recently received them from The Insolvency Service of the office of the Official Receiver, after correspondence… I produce as Exhibit "BMCL/5" a certificate that E.T.S. was a specialist in personal and secured lending. I produce a copy of a certificate from the Office of Fare Trading dated 14 September 1989 as Exhibit "BMCL/6", I produce as Exhibit "BMCL/7" a bundle of documents relating to the incorporation of the Company, including the Certificate of Incorporation and Change of Name, together with copies of Companies Form Number 224, Form 88(2), Form 288 regarding change of Directors in respect of E.T.S. Ltd., Form 288 in respect of Risdon's new Company, Willowpell Ltd., a Stock Transfer Form in respect of Willowpell Ltd., and two Stock Transfer Forms in respect of Willowpell Ltd. And E.T.S. Ltd., which do not appear to have been signed.
I produce as Exhibit "BMCL/8" an original of a Deed of Agreement dated 4July 1990 drawn up by Risdon, which encapsulates my agreement with Risdon on my resigning my Directorship of E.T.S. I should add that Risdon has never paid me any of the £150,000 which he owed me.
Returning now to May 1989, when I became a Director of E.T.S. Ltd., Risdon brought with him from C.C.S. an employee of that Company who was supposed to be an engineer. He was an Arab - perhaps called "Ahmed". He turned out to be incompetent and only stayed a few weeks. E.T.S. at first did very well. At first there was a lot of correspondence from C.C.S. complaining that Risdon had been in breach of contract by taking business from C.C.S., but Risdon ignored this.
Risdon clearly had business acumen, but his problem was that he could not see a project through. He is not a person, he is a multi-faceted character who seems incapable of doing anything in a straight forward manner. At first we got into the surveillance business. We would supply close circuit television cameras and suchlike to large supermarket chains at great profit. We used the best quality equipment and fitted it in shops. However, just when a particular line of business was going well, Risdon would invariably go off at a tangent, saying he wanted to send guns to South Africa for example. When he had a new idea like that, he would spend hours rummaging around collecting material on it and reading up for hours on it.
He was fascinated by James Bond type schemes. When he had a new scheme coming he would sometimes descend into a trance like state for hours, and you couldn't disturb him. He would often work late at night on these schemes, either at the office or at home, perhaps only interrupting his train of thought to play his guitar for example. When he emerged from the "trance" a scheme would be borne, and he might tell me about it or he might tell me something about it. He might then come back to me several times in a day with variations on the scheme. He had no scruples at all and would betray anybody's confidences to make money without a second thought.
By the time he signed the Heads of Agreement, I was convinced that he was mad and dangerous, and my motive for signing the Agreement was just to get out of the Company. I knew that one day, instead of actually talking about all these schemes, he would actually put one of them into practice, with disastrous results for all concerned. I wanted to get out before this happened.
One scheme he got involved in was buying hand held “Uniden” radios from a man in the South of Ireland. This man bought them direct from Uniden the United States. I suggested to Risdon that he was crazy buying the radios from the man in the South of Ireland when he could purchase them directly from the United States. I believe he did go to the United States in connection with this, although I'm not certain. He did do business directly with the American suppliers, and I believe that he sent the sum of £86,000 or possibly dollars with the order to the American company. We had to wait six or seven months for the goods to be delivered, and the Company lost bank interest on the monies in the meantime.
When the goods arrived, Risdon managed to sell some of them to Sealink for £112,000. Previously Sealink had purchased equipment from Motorola, and puts the contract out to tender every few years. Our equipment was so good that we got the contract. The contract was not renewed the following year as Risdon had already moved on to other things.
One day four public school and university educated black Africans came in apparently wanting to purchase rocket launchers and other arms. Risdon, who himself said he was university educated, had a meeting with them. After the meeting, he told me that we could supply them with arms for £6.5m, and was very excited about this.
I believe that these Africans were genuinely from the Government of Nigeria or Uganda or some other African state.
Two days later he came to the office in his smartest suit and said he was going to the Ministry of Defence. He told me afterwards that he had managed to get an appointment with the Secretary of the Ministry, and had made up a story that the previous week another group of Africans had come in asking for arms. This was a complete fabrication. He said that his motivation for telling the Ministry this was to try to get a contract with the Ministry of Defence as a supplier.
In the end, he did not succeed in getting a contract with the Ministry of Defence or with the Africans. He clearly had no licence to export arms, and I think that the Ministry of Defence thought that he was a "crank". It certainly helped to confirm my conclusion that he was more or less mad.
This episode was also typical of the way he could not be straight forward about anything. The story of the other Africans - whom he suggested to the Ministry of Defence were rebel leaders - coming to see him was absolute and complete fabrication.
He was fascinated by wealthy and famous people and was jealous of their money. I told him that if he worked hard, he too could be rich one day without the need to swindle such people or betray their confidences.
An example of this was that he had managed to ascertain that the Al Fayed brothers who owned Harrods were in the habit of ……… This is in fact true I believe.
Risdon, however, tried to get through to Tiny Rowlands to tell him about this to ingratiate himself with him and try to win business. I do not think that anything came of this, as with most of Risdon's schemes.
He was also involved in trying to sell bullet proof cars and vests to people in the Philippines. He was, as usual, very enthusiastic about this and said that there was a huge market for bullet proof cars in the Philippines.
He also got involved with a group of ex-S.A.S. people concerning supplying the cars and the vests. He was fascinated by the S.A.S.Concerning the bullet proof cars, he actually put an order in for the reinforced glass and sheet steel. I do not think we actually made money out of this contract.
Another chap came into the office one day with night vision glasses, the possession of which is in fact restricted by law. This is an example of the sort of weird people that Risdon had been developing contacts with. Risdon then hatched upon the idea to rob the person who had the night vision glasses. This was not surprising, as there were very few people with whom he came in to contact that he did not suggest robbing at one time or another.
We used to sell a large variety of electronic gadgets. Risdon himself was quite good with electronics. He was able to bug people's premises by putting a special type of adaptor into a plug socket. The adaptor was a normal type of adaptor, but Risdon inserted a listening device in it. He would use these adaptors to bug people's conversations, even if he didn't know the people, just for the hell of it, to see what he could glean. We had a customer called WK who in fact was a consultant for the television programme ... WK used to have clients who wanted to tap people's phones from the outside, illegally of course, so that they or he could sit in a car outside in the street and hear everything that was said.
I was also approached by a number of policemen who wanted to bug people's telephones. I did not do business with them as I believe that policemen are all too easily corruptible.
One of the more successful contracts that was actually carried out was supplying video cameras to supermarkets and off-licenses. Risdon had at one point fourteen or fifteen salesmen working for us. The Sales Manager was NP - he was in fact a con man.
Another contract Risdon suggested was to do business with Saudi Arabia or the United Arab Emirates. He was always fascinated with these places because of their wealth, and used to say that there were fortunes to be made from those countries, as if you could just get off the plane and collect the money without having to do any work for it.
As far as the finances of the Company were concerned, Risdon tended to sort them out himself. As I have said, most of the business was in cash, and I know he did not declare a lot of it to me. However, I was not greedy, and as long as I was making some money, I didn't mind.
Overall, I lost money in the Company. I put in about £18,000 or £20,000 of my own money.
I also know that Risdon drew money out by forging my signature. Money went from the Company's bank account and Risdon must have forged my signature as we were both on the mandate.
I first heard of Darius Guppy from Risdon. Guppy had apparently left his business card at C.C.S., and Risdon I believe rang him.
Darius asked me to design for him a box with a false bottom. I bought sheets of aluminium and designed a box with a very thin secret compartment at the bottom which was almost impossible to discover. I thought at first that this would be used for documents but I later discovered it was to smuggle gold to India. Having designed the box, I went to a company called …… and showed them the box. They agreed to manufacture it.
Eventually, I believe Darius contacted ….. directly, and squared up by paying Risdon a commission on each box supplied….
The only other occasion I did business with Darius was when he called us and said there was someone who had been very, very nasty to his family. He said that a News of the World reporter had tried to …….
Darius was incredibly incensed, and rang me up and asked me if I would go and "see" the reporter. There were one or two phone calls about this and I agreed to go. I think really that the phone calls were Darius' idea of releasing tension. Occasionally, I have been employed to threaten physical violence against people, but only when they have been engaged in something very nasty indeed. For example someone might contact me and say that his sixteen year old daughter was living with a man twice her age and mistreating her severely. I might go around and make it clear to the man that he should leave the girl alone. I have to admit that if he didn't agree, I might assault him. If the man threatened violence back, I would warn him that next time he would have others besides me to contend with, so therefore that would do him no good. It was really a form of persuasion, and physical violence was to be avoided if possible.
I will explain further, later in this statement, my experience with violence and the threat of violence dating from a very early age….
It is possible at the time that we knew Risdon was bugging my phone or Darius' phone and we were only doing it to turn Risdon on, as we knew he liked to collect information about people. Darius could confirm this.
I believe that Risdon told me that BH, whom I like……….
I think he was also intending to meet up with some people concerning the illegal export of arms to South Africa. It is possible that the liquidators of E.T.S., who are in possession of the Company's documents, may have correspondence between Risdon and …..
Sometime after Risdon got back from New York, he said that he happened to
know someone who had been carrying a large load of diamonds and had been robbed. He did not say where this was or who the person was.
He said that he was going to phone them and threaten them by saying he was
going to tell the police that if they did not pay him money, he would tell the police that they had planned the robbery. It could have been the press that he was going to threaten to tell.
When pressed on the details, I cannot exactly remember because there were just
so many schemes and most of them never came to fruition.
Risdon might have come to me twice in the same day with a variation of this plan. This was often his way. Eventually, Risdon told me that it was Darius who had been robbed. I strongly disapproved of the plan because I liked Darius, who always treated me like a gentleman. Similarly, Ben Marsh, whom I have only ever met a couple of times, and who is much quieter than Darius, is very agreeable.
Sometime later, Risdon came to me with another plot. He said that a diamond in excess of 200 carats was supposed to be coming over from South Africa. Risdon said the diamond might be worth up to £6 million, but might be sold in England for £2-3 million. He said it was stolen from someone in South Africa in circumstances involving a murder.
Risdon said that he was going to ring Darius and offer him the diamond. If Darius wanted to buy the diamond, Risdon said he would take his money and earn a commission from the South Africans, and from Darius. We would also make a basic profit on the deal.
There were so many variations of this plot that I cannot remember which was specifically the first version.
I believe Risdon told me about this particular plot when I was still at E.T.S., although I cannot be sure. It was going on for months.
According to Risdon's original plan, when Darius had bought the diamond, he would be robbed of it. Darius would not be able to scream because of his knowledge of where the diamond had come from.
My reaction to this latest plan of Ridson's was that it was typical "Alice in Wonderland". I am not an angel. If I wanted to make money on a diamond, I would just rob the people who had the diamond when they arrived with it in England. All these schemes were ridiculous.
The more and more Risdon told me about the plot, over the course of a few weeks, the more ridiculous it became. There was even someone called "Jake the Greek" involved. Most of Risdon's plans sounded at first plausible, but when you examined them, they were nonsense.
Risdon later told me that he heard that the South Africans would have to come over and be put up in a hotel, and that they would have to hire a special car that could not be traced and have to pay £5000 for a gun.
I decided to tell Darius on the telephone in confidence about the scheme. I felt that I needed to warn Darius that Risdon was dangerous…..
This was also the final straw with Risdon and I decided to try to get out of E.T.S. and Risdon's new business, Willowpell Ltd., before he got involved in serious criminality.
Risdon of course still owed me £150,000, and he strung me along for quite a time saying he would pay me eventually. He was, I think, quite scared of me, despite the fact that he is about one foot taller than me. I once chased him all over our offices.
My idea was to wait until Risdon's new business had started making money, and then I would find a way to get the money from Risdon which he owed me.
The premises of Risdon's business moved to East Dulwich. I did hear from one of E.T.S.'s employees that before that happened, Darius was renting a basement from Risdon in Tabbard Street. However, I had limited contact with Risdon by this stage and was never at the offices at Tabbard Street during the time that Darius rented the basement.
I heard quite a long time later - it may well have been in April 1991 - that Risdon had been arrested. I went around to Risdon's place and gave his girlfriend £50 and some food for her and her baby from a previous relationship. I was very fond of her and felt sorry for her and the child.
Some time later, Risdon came to see me and said that he wanted to repay the money I had given to his girlfriend. I told him I didn't want it, as the money had not been for him anyway, it had been for his girlfriend.
Risdon told me that what in fact had happened with the South African diamond in the end was that he and the South Africans had tried to pull off an insurance fraud. I knew that this was one of the several schemes which were originally suggested. I took it that plan A – the plan to sell the diamond to Darius and then rob him – had not materialized. Risdon told me that a similar scheme had been pulled off by the South Africans before and that this was perhaps why he was arrested.
Risdon told me that he had got a false passport in the name of one of the South Africans with his photograph on it. He told me that he went to draw out the diamond from a bank, and was suddenly surrounded by police and he was arrested.
He did not seem to be too bothered about it, and he told me that he was going to sort something out with the police. He did not go into anymore detail. Risdon told me that what he suspected was that he had been set up by the South Africans.
I remember reading in a newspaper that Darius had been arrested for illegal possession of a gun. I may have heard this from a friend who read the newspaper and then told me about it, as personally I do not go out much these days…..
I did not hear anything further about Darius for months and months. A friend of mine then rang me up - I'd rather not name him - and told me that Risdon was in court giving evidence against people. At first I thought it must be concerning the diamond and that he was shopping the South Africans.
Then my friend told me that it was against a man called Guppy and a man called Marsh. I felt bad about this, and got my briefcase out to look for Darius' number. This was about two and a half weeks ago. I was told by a woman living at his address in …. that he had moved.
My solicitor would not in fact want me to get involved in this matter, as would say that it was very dangerous. I have been advised by Darius’ solicitor that I should speak to my own solicitor if I want to. However, I feel that what Risdon has done is disgusting, and I cannot allow it to happen. He has already ruined enough people's lives, and the man must be stopped.
Returning now to Summer 1990, there was certainly a period when I was only partly involved with Risdon, and AR was acting as a go-between. I knew that AR wanted to jump into my shoes, but I did not mind. I just wanted to wait until Risdon had made some money and then get my money back.
Willowpell Ltd. was then set up and Risdon became a director. Risdon rang me up about doing an insurance job on Willowpell. He said we could make money together and empty Willowpell. By then, however, I thought that Risdon was totally mad, and could not keep his mind on any particular goal.
I thought it was pity, as I am convinced that I could have made a fortune with Risdon legally. Risdon, however, I think wanted to be a gangster without really knowing what it would entail. If only he had known what it really did entail he might not have been so keen.
I do have a criminal record. I have had to deal with violence all my life. When I was young… beat me up. He locked me up in a cupboard and left me for a few days and then when he let me out, he beat me up for not having been able to wait to go to the toilet. This happened repeatedly… He hit me over the head with an iron bar when I was eleven. When I was fourteen or fifteen, …….. and I assaulted him putting him in hospital. I was locked up for a time. I was convicted of robbery with violence in 1962. I am afraid that violence became a habit with me. On the vast majority of occasions, violence would not be used, however, the threat of violence would be enough to do what needed to be done.
In 1975, I was convicted of armed robbery and was sentenced to ten years imprisonment. I was released in 1982. Since then I have never been to prison. I have been convicted since then for a couple of silly assaults - on one occasion I got a Supervision Order.
…..These days, I lead a quiet life, with only a very few friends. I have few ambitions. Since I came out of prison, and before my last stretch in prison, I have always been gainfully employed. However, at present I am unable to work having …. and am in receipt of sickness benefit.
I remember a couple of other matters concerning Risdon, though if pressed I could probably remember more. Firstly, Risdon told me that he had been tried in Scotland for an armed robbery. I think the result was "not proven", which is not the same as "innocent" in Scottish law. He told me that he had attempted to rob a hotel with two others using a sawn off shotgun. He had managed to avoid a guilty verdict in the end because one of his co-defendants was the son of a policeman.
He also told me that he had done a mortgage scam in Scotland involving taking mortgages out on a number of properties, putting tenants in the properties, not paying the mortgages, but still collecting the rents.
There was another incident concerning a chap called B…
B was part of a security team that was employed by the News of the World to muck-rake on Viscount Althorp. B told Risdon about this in confidence and as part of general conversation among people in the security business but did not know that Risdon knew… Risdon betrayed B …. and as a result, Risdon ended up on a television programme. Now B can never get a job in security again. I think that this is disgraceful. All this I assume, was simply because Risdon wanted to get himself on television. Risdon thought nothing of his betrayal.
Thirdly, Risdon stole an Olivetti computer from a Company called "Kesperry Ltd." Who had previously rented the offices at Tabbard Street. I produce as Exhibit "BMCL/9" a business card of that Company. Risdon took the computer when Kesperry left the offices, and Kesperry never found out that it was Risdon who had stolen it. Risdon told them that the removal van had taken it. I know that he also took that computer with him to Willowpell.
Risdon thinks nothing of his girlfriend ….. He told me that as soon as he makes money, he would buy her a car, and then leave her. I do not mind saying this in Court as …. is a
good girl who ….. but should be warned about him.
I have never heard of …. and was certainly never told about any scheme to rob him or any consultant or employee of ……
As I have said, he often tapped people's phones, especially wealthy people's phones, for the sheer hell of it, or to see what he could gather. Risdon was at one stage developing equipment which could fire lasers at windows from hundreds of yards away, so that the listener could hear anything going on in the room…..
In fact Risdon suggested a dozen different escapades involving Darius. There was always kidnapping in the background and there was always blackmail. He thought he could corrupt anyone. He thought he could sell stolen diamonds to Darius for cash, take the cash and then rob the diamonds or perhaps blackmail Darius over it using a conversation he had tapped. If plan A didn’t work plan B was to kidnap him and take him to a farmhouse with a cellar and demand a ransom. However, the farmhouse and the cellar only existed in his head…
Risdon is the sort of person who I would never keep my eyes off. If he came around to my flat and then went to the bathroom, I would check the bathroom afterwards to make sure he had not planted a bug. I do not think that he is currently bugging my premises as I still have at my flat bug detecting equipment. I believe I remember that Risdon swept Darius' office for bugs and it was often on such occasions that he planted bugs. He used to ring up companies to offer to sweep their offices and then when he swept their offices he used to plant bugs. He used to do this for the hell of it.
I believe that Risdon's current business is in relation to chickens. I am slightly worried about Risdon as I believe that he may well have tapes of me which may compromise me but I am still prepared to give evidence as I believe that the man must be stopped. I am not giving evidence out of any hatred for Risdon.
I cannot imagine that BH would initiate any phone-taps or recordings of Darius, but believe that Risdon would have put him up to it…
I have been told that I must not contact BH or any other prosecution witness.
This is the typewritten version of the affidavit by Brian McLaine (‘BMcL’), Peter Risdon’s former business partner.
This has been included for ease of reference, incorporating BMcL’s additional comments which may be difficult to decipher in their entirety. Those comments can be seen in the original affidavit that follows (Exhibit 3) where they have been handwritten by the lawyer to whom BMcL dictated his statement and are visible in the body of the typewritten text. BMcL then signed his initials next to each of these additional comments in the left hand margin.
Individuals’ names have been shortened to their initials for reasons of discretion. References to third parties or events unconnected with the relevant matters have also been deleted for the same reason. Likewise with certain embarassing revelations of a personal nature about Mr Risdon. This is in keeping with the purpose of this website, which is simply to tell the truth about the circumstances surrounding Peter Risdon’s turning police informer at the DG/BM trial since he seems incapable of doing so himself. This should be contrasted with postings made by Peter Risdon in his Freeborn John website in which he blackmails DG, threatening to publish transcripts of bugged telephone conversations involving DG, illegally obtained by him, and of a personal nature. (These postings by Peter Risdon have now been removed by him after DG successfully brought libel proceedings against him – see Exhibit 53 and comments thereon).
Most of the evidence contained in BMcL’s affidavit speaks for itself. Peter Risdon comes across as a pathological liar and a fantasist with a genuinely treacherous nature.
In one particular posting made by Risdon on his ‘Freeborn John’ website he implies that he had a good working relationship with BMcL and that BMcL shared much of Risdon’s sentiments regarding DG. In fact, as is clear from his affidavit, BMcL had a very low opinion of his partner, Peter Risdon, and felt genuine affection towards DG and BM.
It was of course unknown to Risdon at the time of his postings that BMcL had sworn this affidavit just before the DG/BM trial. In further postings Peter Risdon talks in pompous terms about having “blunderbuss”- type evidence against DG and of the “restraint” he has shown towards him given this fact. Typically, this is untrue and it would appear that the reverse is in fact the case. For most of the evidence included in this website dates back some fifteen years. It seems that it is DG and BM who have demonstrated the real “restraint.”
Some salient points that deserve brief commentary:
- Risdon’s criminality seems to have been broad and in-built. It was not focused on any particular objective such as a desire for revenge against a specific target or even to get himself out of trouble over a particular matter. For him criminality, often of a petty kind, was attractive for its own sake.
- Risdon would feel no compunction in betraying those he was close to. A classic case of a man more dangerous to his friends than his enemies.
- Risdon had deep inferiority issues. He considered it important, for example, to claim that he had been ‘University-educated’ when in fact he had failed as an undergraduate. This is stated not because the editors wish to express views either way about the importance of a university education but because Risdon himself put such store by it and was prepared, as with all aspects of his life, to lie through his teeth in order to bolster his fragile ego. Likewise he seems to have been obsessed with wealthy or glamorous people, again largely owing to an inferiority complex.
- Risdon lived in a fantasy world, likening himself to, in his own words, a “merchant prince.” This capacity for delusion is true to a large extent of those who inhabit the twilight world of ‘security’ but in Risdon’s own case the fantasies became exaggerated and pathological, perhaps exacerbated by his consistent use of cannabis. He fantasised for example about founding a huge criminal empire with branches “as far away as Greece” and while his crackpot schemes to provide armoured vehicles to despotic African dreams were treated by the Ministry of Defence as the delusions of a rather sad individual, nevertheless those delusions reveal Risdon’s instincts.
- Risdon’s two claims to fame in life are that he was the supergrass in the DG/BM case and that he obtained secret tapes of telephone conversations between DG and the young Boris Johnson (‘BJ’) who was later to become a television personality and well-known conservative politician. Knowing that most people would consider illegally tapping other people’s telephones a squalid and distasteful activity, and keen to rebuild his reputation and re-invent himself, Risdon chose, in a number of postings, to justify his actions on the grounds that, having been duped (and later ‘framed’) into acting as the gunman in the DG/BM heist in New York, he wished to glean information on DG in order to protect himself. This, however, is not his business partner, BMcL’s, version of events as is clear from this affidavit. For, according to BMcL, Risdon would regularly offer to sweep his clients’ offices for bugs but then use the occasions to plant listening devices in the hope of being able to blackmail them afterwards. If Risdon had really been so concerned about being ‘framed’ or ‘duped’ by DG and BM then what was he doing bugging other people’s offices – an offence for which he was arrested and cautioned by police but which he conveniently fails to mention in any of his postings? And what was he doing a year later going into a bank attempting to retrieve a large diamond that had been insured for several hundred thousand pounds in conspiracy with a group of South Africans who had attempted to claim insurance moneys using the same modus operandi on at least one previous occasion?
- Far from being duped by DG and BM, BMcL states that Peter Risdon knew precisely what he was doing; that his failed attempt at a diamond insurance fraud a year later was in essence an attempt to imitate DG and BM; that his original plans had included blackmailing DG and BM over his role in the New York heist as well as robbing DG subsequently. BMcL also states clearly that Risdon had made a deal with the police officers who arrested him while in the process of exercising his failed insurance fraud and indeed this is consistent with all the other evidence posted in this website as well as with the comments from numerous police officers investigating these matters.
- BMcL also makes clear that Risdon had used his associations with the police - (he is a registered police informer) - on at least one previous occasion to get himself out of trouble over a criminal act, namely an attempted armed robbery in Scotland
Finally, a particular passage in this exhibit (Pages 12-13 of Exhibit 3), although not strictly relevant as far as the purposes of this website are concerned, is interesting nevertheless in that it concerns The Johnson Tapes.
The Johnson Tapes were obtained by Peter Risdon when he illegally bugged DG’s phone - for which he was subsequently charged and cautioned – a practice in which, as BMcL confirms, Risdon frequently engaged with the aim of blackmailing his clients.
In The Johnson Tapes DG is heard asking BJ for the address of a certain Stuart Collier, a journalist with The News of the World, his aim being to give Mr Collier a good hiding.
The individual whom DG approached to achieve his goal was in fact BMcL, as this Exhibit confirms.
Since the publication of the tapes in the media – after Risdon sold them to The News of the World – Mr Collier and certain other elements of the British Press, together with political opponents of BJ, have sought to assert that DG’s motive in wishing to teach Mr Collier a lesson had been a desire to punish the journalist for prying into DG and BM’s insurance claim against Lloyds of London. This seems to have been an attempt on their part to justify Mr Collier’s actions and to paint DG in a bad light.
The timing of Risdon’s bugging of DG’s premises should, however, be noted. For the tapes were made in 1990 at around the time when DG and BM’s company was paid out by Lloyds. The fact that their heist had been successful strongly suggests that they were beyond suspicion at that time.
And indeed the Loss Adjuster’s report, written at this time, confirms: “We have confirmed with the police that in their mind, there is no doubt that this is a genuine loss.”
Additionally, the evidence proves that it was not in fact until an entire year had passed and Peter Risdon had grassed on DG and BM having been caught attempting his own insurance sting involving an uncut diamond, that the pair were arrested, in July 1991.
Not being suspected at this time, therefore, it seems improbable in the extreme that Mr Collier was probing into the insurance claim and even less likely that DG would have done anything to rock the boat in this regard.
In fact, BMcL confirms the real reason for DG’s attempt to obtain Mr Collier’s address and to give him a beating: Collier had been attempting to dig up dirt, in typical News of the World style, about members of his family, including his future wife - at that time his fiancée.
Readers should judge for themselves whether, in the circumstances, DG’s wanting to beat up a piece of English tabloid filth constitutes a moral outrage.