“I was meant to pick up those drugs from the airport,” said former criminal William Moss. Mr Moss made this statement seven years ago, and he has stuck to this line.
“There was no intention for the drugs to go to Bali. That’s it, the drugs were never intended to go to Bali.”
Why would they be transported to Bali when they could get their sellers up to ten times the value on the streets of any Australian city?
Mr Moss said that several passengers on flight AO 7829 were unaware that corrupted baggage handlers at Brisbane Domestic airport planted cannabis in their luggage – bound for Sydney. The origin of the cannabis was South America. On October 8, 2004 Ms Corby boarded that fateful flight, the first leg of a two leg flight to Bali – via Sydney Domestic linking up with Sydney International. Ms Corby’s life would change forever more.
Mr Moss’ statement could have made the world of difference to Ms Corby’s defence but supporting statements to what Mr Moss stated in interviews and to Australian authorities were withheld from Ms Corby’s defence – in part leading to nightmarish experiences which continue to this day – jail, public humiliation, degradation and psychological torment that have led to the significant reduction of Ms Corby’s mental wellbeing, to the point that Ms Corby has long been suicidal.
The withholding of information by Australian Governments and by some of the organs of its State whether arguably in the ‘national interest’ geopolitically or whether in terms of national security interests in terms of corruption within Customs and the airport services, are beyond scandalous and deplorable – they are criminal. These omissions of vital information, crucial evidence, and other censorship have made a dark mockery of the Australian political landscape – here we see compromised Australian political and judicial processes, and which impute shadowy ex-judicial decisions within and with the instruments and highest offices of our Government. Hence transparency, accountability and justice are just benign bywords.
According to Mr Moss, who now lives in fear for his life, who has damned himself because of what is effectively his need to repent, he was to collect the cannabis from a corrupt airport handler at Sydney Domestic airport. According to Mr Moss the cannabis was to be passed by him to a corrupt police officer via an associate – sidekick. The ex-police officer in question is Christopher John Laycock, then a detective at a suburban police station. The cannabis would have been sold on the streets of Sydney.
In 2005, Mr Laycock was the subject of a Police Integrity Commission report, and in 2012 he was finally imprisoned. A closed court imprisoned him for four years – another disgraced police officer caught out.
A report on Mr Laycock’s associations can be found here:
In the previous year, the former Assistance Director of the NSW Crimes Commission, one of the nation’s senior most anti-drugs fighters, Mark Standen was sentenced to 22 years in prison for conspiring to traffick enough of the chemical agent pseudoephedrine to produce $60 million of ‘ice’. The well respected Mr Standen had coordinated Operation Mocha, which sought to catch out corrupt airport baggage handlers and corrupt customs officers and hence reduce the movement of cannabis via Australian airport services. Mr Standen’s Operation Mocha was in full swing on October 8, 2004 at Sydney Domestic. Corrupted airport baggage handlers and customs officers were tipped off, and hence spooked they did not remove the cannabis from Ms Corby’s boogie board bag.
Therefore Mr Moss did not collect any cannabis for Mr Laycock’s alleged associate and their mob of misguided miscreants.
Why is Ms Corby in a Bali prison? Because Indonesian authorities found 4.1 kilograms of cannabis in her boogie board bag. Because the Australian authorities and the Australian Government let her down, and in ways that should forever haunt the individuals at the core of the letdowns.
Ms Corby was not a user of drugs. Ms Corby had no criminal record. But she does now.
Indonesian customs officers and police interrogated Ms Corby for nine hours. Ms Corby maintained her innocence. She has always maintained her innocence. She is innocent.
The drugs were not tested for country of origin. There was no testing for DNA and for fingerprints on her boogie board bag. CCTV footage from the Brisbane and Sydney Domestic airports was not provided, despite 800 CCTV cameras. All of this was requested by Ms Corby and her lawyers but never provided. Is this justice?
Without the Australian Government and without various Australian authorities releasing various information and arguable evidence – all within Ms Corby’s natural rights – what hope could Ms Corby have in an Indonesian court? Zero. The judge who presided over her case had never acquitted anyone in 500 previous alleged drugs trafficking cases.
Ms Corby’s predicament was that a ridiculous notional pressure point existed between Indonesian and Australian relations. But Indonesian sources have told me that all the Australian Government needs to do is be publicly honest about its compromised airport services and do more to end the corruption within. Indonesia does not want drugs trafficked into its country, and is prepared to sentence to death people found in possession of illicit drugs and hence who are convicted of drug trafficking – to scare off potential drug smugglers and to make other nations understand that they need to do more to stop drugs being trafficked. The Indonesian judicial system knows that many of the poor souls it convicts are innocent – that indeed they are unwitting mules. But, the Indonesian judicial system continues to find them guilty. The Indonesian Government knows that airport services around the world are compromised, that customs officers and airport personnel are continually corrupted – such as in Australian airports. An Indonesian Government official said to me that the Indonesian Government has no choice but to continue to send the most powerful message it knows to everyone, including to the Australian Government(s) and authorities, that “we will send to death or to jail anyone found with illegal drugs in our country… and it is up to the Australian Government to fix its airports, to be as rigorous as we are.”
“Schapelle Corby is probably innocent, many of us (in Indonesia) believe or know this but the fault for this is Australia. Why is it so easy to plant illegal drugs in luggage in your airports?”
Despite whistleblowers –former criminals and former customs officials – exposing corruption in Australian airports, and despite journalists catching out corrupted airport customs officers, the Australian Government and its many organs are yet to comprehensively publicly own up to these facts – and the movement of illicit drugs around the nation through our airports is endemic and pernicious.
Ms Corby was treated as if her human worth and her very life were expendable.
Then Minister for Customs and Justice, Chris Ellison, and then Prime Minister John Howard, and let us not leave out Alexander Downer, all of them, and others, let down Ms Corby, and the Australian people. However more on this in future articles.
It is abhorrent to fathom that any citizen could be sacrificed for the sake of political expediency, for geopolitical reasons, for pathetic and dangerous excuses such as ‘national security’.
When one reads all the reports from 2004 and 2005, and all the reports and reviews from the last 15 years of alleged corruption at Australian airports then one knows without any reservation that there is corruption. And not just ad hoc disorganised corruption, but cultivated well-organised corruption. The veils and layers of corruption are myriad. Despite Mr Standen’s conviction, the corruption continues. There are still holes within our airport services, and therefore no Australian citizen should feel safe while travelling, not feel safe from being abused as an unwitting drugs mule.
In future articles I will publish emails that have been obtained under the Freedom of Information Act in which instructions are given to Government spokespeople to restrict themselves to effective pro forma manifest comment in response to questions from media about anything to do with Ms Corby.
Once a political direction is taken then the organs of the State just back it. Otherwise people are out of a job or affiliated organisations are ostracised. It is my experience that the organs of the State get behind whatever Government directs on any issue as the way forward despite any collateral damage.
When Ms Corby’s lawyers pressed QANTAS for confirmation of the weight of her boogie board bag during transit, after it had passed airport handlers, QANTAS provided only the total weight of her bags. They confirmed the total weight at 65 kilograms, but she had checked in her luggage at just less than 60 kilograms, and at less than 60 kilograms it was underweight. Therefore 5 kilograms were added after the check-in. If 65 kilograms was the correct weight when Ms Corby had checked in her luggage then her luggage would have been at least 5 kilograms overweight, and Ms Corby would have been up for a $175 charge, and which would have had to be paid on the spot, for the additional 5 kilograms. But this never happened. This information was known to the Australian Government and to various Australian authorities, but this vital information was not released to Ms Corby and her lawyers in time for her defence – in September 2005 she was sentenced to 20 years jail.
A former head of an Australian Federal Police anti-organised crime operation, Ray Cooper, has long revealed that it was well known among his colleagues that passengers were being used as mules by corrupted airport baggage handlers to move cannabis around Australia.
The now convicted anti-drugs investigator, Mr Standen coordinated Operation Mocha on that fateful October 8 day. Operation Mocha was ‘secretly’ monitoring airport baggage handlers and customs officers but they were tipped off.
In June, 1997, a Melbourne couple intended to enjoy a Bali holiday. In their hotel room when opening up their luggage, to their shock they found a large block of compressed cannabis, about the same size and weight of that of the cannabis in Ms Corby’s boogie board bag. They did not know what to do. They realised that they were fortunate they had not been stopped for an inspection at Denpasar Airport. If they had been, they would now be in prison, their lives forever changed. In the end, they did contact Australian consular officials. They were shocked with what they were told by the consular officials. They were told to flush the cannabis, to not report it to any Indonesian authority – “under no circumstance.” They were told if they reported it, they would be arrested for being in possession of the cannabis. The officials understood Indonesia’s utilitarian like policy and its stances to other nations to do more in their own countries to reduce drug trafficking. They did flush the cannabis. This story has been confirmed as a true account by Australian authorities.
What had happened was that just like what occurred to Ms Corby the cannabis was not removed at Sydney Domestic, more than likely for the same reason that the airport baggage handlers were under watch or within proximity of others.
In 2002, three years before Ms Corby’s arrest, a top customs investigator, Allan Kessing, was selected to investigate airport baggage handling. He found many holes in airport services. His report to his superiors was a damning one, it indicted a rogue culture of corruption. He submitted a preliminary report in 2003 and a final report in 2004 to his superiors and allegedly to also the Australian Federal Police. Mr Kessing felt little seemed to arise from his report, other than the report sitting idle. It was Ms Corby’s arrest that led him, mid-2005, into leaking the report to the media – Mr Kessing became a whistleblower. However the do-gooder Mr Kessing was charged under the Crimes Act for whistleblowing. He turned up to court with his bags packed knowing he would be jailed. What sort of Australia is this? Do you recognise it? We need to know, so we can do something about it.
I have been working on finding the truth out about what really happened and why to Ms Corby, with a number of individuals, sources in the Australian and Indonesian Governments and within their State instruments, and with researchers, Indonesian, Australian and elsewhere in the world, working to reveal the abhorrent injustices slated to Ms Corby.
One researcher is based in the United Kingdom, his name is Christian Hetzel.
When we first corresponded he said to me, “The sheer scale of (the injustices) will shock you and will disgust you.”
“A range of criminal acts were perpetrated from Canberra. But incredibly, the Australian media will not report them.”
“Instead, they fabricate and smear, largely using her dead father – dead men can’t sue. They vilify, hound and lie. No-one cares. No-one defends her.”
“This is the problem.”
“Someone who has a public voice has to speak out, if the truth is to emerge,” said Mr Hetzel.
“There is an innocent and courageous but broken woman heavily medicated, in an overcrowded squalid cell. She has been there for nearly ten years. Last year she tried to kill herself.”
“She desperately needs us to take hold of the truth.”
A highly respected Australian psychiatrist visited her, and confirmed her mental deterioration but disturbingly this leading psychiatrist was himself vilified in the mainstream media. Why?
The WikiLeaks organisation released an interesting email last February (Monday, 27th) that refers to Ms Corby. The email is part of the now infamous Statfor cables that WikiLeaks published. Stratfor Global Intelligence describes itself as providing “global awareness and guidance to individuals, governments and businesses around the world.”
In one of those cables a Stratfor tactical analyst, Marko Primorac, wrote, “Several baggage agents can work together to ensure packages are placed in an unsuspecting mule’s luggage. These smuggling teams place packages in luggage belonging to uninvolved passengers like Schapelle Corby, who didn’t even know the marijuana was in her bag. Unscrupulous? Yes. However, this is how millions of pounds of marijuana get shipped in the US and around the globe. It’s bad news if the unwitting mule gets jail time if the pot is intercepted, as it was in Schapelle Corby’s case or if the mule figures out what’s going on and keeps the goods.”
Stratfor provides confidential intelligence to some of the world’s largest corporations and to government agencies, including to the US Department of Homeland Security and to the US Defence Intelligence agencies. Stratfor’s reputation has been built on the reliability and accuracy of its information – obviously of paramount importance particularly given its clients.
A full transcript of the cable by Mr Primorac can be found at WikiLeaks here.
That Ms Corby is innocent and that this is beyond any reasonable doubt is unquestionable and if judicial processes had been given every rightful opportunity, and if the Australian Government and Australian authorities had met with their inherent moral and legal proprieties and if too the Australian media had done its job, properly, Ms Corby would be a free person.
Mr Moss’ testimony stands. Mr Moss’ evidence should have resulted in Ms Corby’s freedom and to restorative justice in terms of her reputation. The Australian Government should move fast and secure the freedom of Ms Corby, and then ensure immediate and adequate compensation and other restitution to Ms Corby. And then launch an independent inquiry, a bona fide one, into itself.
“As I have said many times criminals do not come forward and give themselves up, but this idiot has,” said Mr Moss.
Mr Moss has lost much, including his peace of mind -he said he lives in fear of his life. Mr Moss said he cannot understand how the news media and the Government have not supported his whistleblowing.
“Schapelle, sorry for where you are, and hopefully I can still help to get you out,” said the repentant Mr Moss.
My own claims on the ABC’s 7:30 Report midyear on what my sources in the Indonesian and Australian Governments told me about a deal being brokered by Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs for the release of Schapelle Corby for the Indonesian children in Australian adult prisons – for more than nine years, the Australian Government has known of her obvious innocence