The how and why of whistleblower smears

Gathered together in one place, for easy access, an agglomeration of writings and images relevant to the Rapeutation phenomenon.

Re: The how and why of whistleblower smears

Postby admin » Mon Mar 28, 2016 5:09 am

Navy Officials Smear Shrink's Performance After He Blows Whistle On Poor PTSD Treatment
by Susie Madrak
2/01/10

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Background: Detail from a copy of the original performance evaluation for Dr. Kernan Manion. Foreground: Detail from the second, negative evaluation for Manion after he went public about mental health care problems at Camp Lejeune.
Professional Judgment: Unsatisfactory; Ethical conduct: Unsatisfactory; Ability to work with peers and support staff: Unsatisfactory


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Dr. Kernan Manion


Internal documents and e-mails show that Navy officials unfavorably doctored a psychiatrist’s performance record after he blew the whistle on what he said was dangerously inept management of care for Marines suffering combat stress at Camp Lejeune, N.C. The internal correspondence, obtained by Salon, also includes an order to delete earlier records praising the work of the psychiatrist, Dr. Kernan Manion, who was fired last September after lodging his complaints.

Now top Navy officials are tangled up in the blackball campaign. Soon after Manion was fired, Rep. Walter Jones, R-N.C., asked the Pentagon about Manion’s concerns about healthcare at Camp Lejeune. In a Dec. 17 letter to Jones, Navy Secretary Ray Mabus panned Manion’s ethics and professionalism, presumably based on information Mabus received about Manion from Camp Lejeune.

But Salon has obtained internal Navy documents and correspondence that suggest officials at Camp Lejeune altered Manion’s favorable personnel records after he went public with his concerns, adding new, derogatory remarks similar to some of the information in Mabus’ letter to Jones.

As Salon reported in November, Manion warned superiors, on multiple occasions and in writing, that mental healthcare at Camp Lejeune was overwhelmed with Marines suffering psychological injuries from combat. It was a toxic environment, Manion argued, that would only contribute to a rapidly escalating suicide epidemic in the military.

Manion also warned the situation at Camp Lejeune threatened to provoke a Fort Hood-style explosion of violence, or one like the acts allegedly carried out by Sgt. John Russell, who the Army says last May executed five fellow soldiers at a military mental health facility in Baghdad. Manion also claimed that troubled Marines sometimes experienced harassment from superiors for seeking help.

In one instance last April, for example, Manion warned Cmdr. Robert O’Byrne, head of mental health at the Camp Lejeune Naval Hospital, of “immediate concerns of physical safety” due to mistreated Marines teetering on the edge of violence. “There was — and continues to be — no means of discussion of high-intensity/dangerous cases,” he wrote. Later that month, Manion quoted to O’Byrne some Marine superiors who were calling troubled Marines “worthless pieces of shit” if they sought help.

Frustrated by what he said was little reaction from O’Byrne and other superiors, on Aug. 30 Manion notified a series of military inspectors general about the risk of “immediate threat of loss of life and/or harm to service members’ selves or others.”

Manion worked as a contractor for Spectrum Healthcare Resources, a subcontractor for NiteLines Kuhana. The contractor told Salon that the Navy ordered Manion fired on Sept. 3, four days after Manion wrote the inspectors general.
“The treatment facility at Camp Lejeune notified [NiteLines] that Dr. Manion did not meet the Government’s requirements in accordance with the contract, and they directed he be removed from the schedule,” it reads. His termination dated that day notice provides no explanation.

Manion saw a case of retaliation. He has hired a lawyer. Manion also appealed to his congressional representative, Jones. That is when Jones asked for an explanation from the Pentagon last year.

Jones’ inquiry prompted the Dec. 17 response from Navy Secretary Mabus. That letter includes some stinging allegations about Manion. “Dr. Manion alleged he was improperly terminated from his job due to the complaints he raised concerning patient care,” Mabus wrote Jones. Not true, Mabus said. “A review of the record revealed that Dr. Manion was removed from the contract due to a sustained pattern of non-compliance with numerous contract stipulations,” he wrote, including absenteeism, disrespect and unprofessional conduct. Mabus added that Manion had been “counseled on multiple occasions but with little effect.”

While Manion’s activism likely chafed some Navy officers, he was never counseled for poor performance, he insists. “Nobody counseled me, ever,” he said. Referring to Mabus’ letter, Manion added, “That was the first I had heard of it.”

Jones told Salon he worried that Manion might have been slandered. “We continue to monitor this issue because we are concerned that Dr. Manion has not been treated like a professional,” said Jones. “We intend to get to the bottom of this because integrity does matter.”


The paper trail suggests Jones is right.

Manion was fired on Sept. 3. A lieutenant commander filled out Manion’s final performance review, called an “exit PAR,” and signed it on Nov. 10, 2009. The document, obtained by Salon, evaluates Manion as “satisfactory” in every applicable performance category, including his judgment, ethical conduct and ability to work with peers.

On Nov. 14, Salon published the first article chronicling Manion’s concerns about the management of mental health care at Camp Lejeune. The article included his allegation that he was fired for blowing the whistle.

On Nov. 24, O’Byrne, the head of mental health, e-mailed that lieutenant commander about the exit evaluation. “I pulled it back,” O’Byrne wrote. “We need to redo.”

O’Byrne sent the evaluation back to the lieutenant commander on Nov. 30. “Please see section VIII and XII of the attached specifically for comments I think capture the essence of what we discussed last week,” O’Byrne wrote.

In section VIII of this new evaluation, Manion’s professional judgment, ethical conduct and ability to work with peers had been changed from “satisfactory” to “unsatisfactory.” A new paragraph, labeled XII, now included, “Dr. Manion demonstrated poor ethical conduct and professional judgment.” It added that Manion had “disruptive relationships with his superiors and peers that had a negative impact on patient care and clinic process.”

In a Dec. 3 email, O’Byrne orders the previous, flattering version of Manion’s review destroyed. “Due to the sensitive nature of issue [sic]” O’Byrne wrote, “please immediately delete all copies of this PAR.”


The lieutenant commander who filled out the original evaluation seems to have stuck to his guns, insisting that Manion performed his job well. He wrote a Camp Lejeune attorney on Dec. 16 that despite O’Byrne’s changes to Manion’s records, “Kernan Manion was considered clinically competent to practice general psychiatry,” he wrote. “I had no specific concerns about his judgment or ethical conduct.”

In that exchange, the lieutenant commander described O’Byrne’s changes to Manion’s evaluation as “drastic.” He added that he was “instructed to sign” the new evaluation.

O’Byrne declined an interview request from Salon. “The allegations in question are completely unfounded and untrue,” Camp Lejeune hospital spokesman Lt. j.g. Mark Jean-Pierre said in a statement to Salon. (Despite numerous requests, Jean-Pierre would not say which allegations are unfounded and untrue.) He went on to suggest that Manion, or perhaps Salon, was irresponsible. “The fact that such accusations are being made against a senior naval officer with an impeccable service record is not only wrong, but irresponsible,” the statement says. It adds, “Officers are held to the highest standards and any behaviors that contradict the naval core values are not tolerated.”

Salon asked the Navy two questions: 1) What is the basis for the derogatory information about Manion in Mabus’ letter? And, 2) What is Mabus’ basis for believing that information is accurate?

The Navy did not answer either question. Instead, a Navy spokesman sent Salon a statement saying the Navy had already investigated Manion’s original concerns about healthcare at Camp Lejeune. “The allegations made by Dr. Manion concerning mental health services being provided at Camp Lejeune were thoroughly reviewed in a recently completed quality assurance investigation,” Navy spokesman Lt. Justin Cole said in a statement to Salon. Cole also added that Navy would not share the results of that investigation. “The results of the quality assurance investigation, to include its findings and recommendations, are not releasable.” Cole insisted, however, that Navy officials were taking unspecified “action” in response to the results of that investigation.

The contractor that hired and fired Manion did not respond to a request for comment on the changes to Manion’s Navy personnel records.

Manion insists he never heard a word about his allegedly poor performance until he reviewed the documents obtained by Salon through multiple sources. Indeed, after his termination by the contractor back in September, Manion wrote the Navy Medical Logistics Command arguing that his otherwise-clean record provided further evidence that he was fired in retribution for blowing the whistle. “Given that I have received no allegations of wrongdoing by any party throughout the course of my employment and given that this termination occurred in the immediate context of my having filed an emergency complaint with the inspector general’s office,” Manion wrote Sept. 30, “I am concerned that your office may not have been aware of such an action having been taken.”

Now that this new paper trail has emerged, Manion has responded by firing off a series of letters to Camp Lejeune officials, including O’Byrne and Manion’s former contractor employer, requesting access to his own personnel files. “I think it is both fair and important that I have the immediate opportunity to review my full personnel assessment, particularly that which pertains to…blatantly false characterizations, so that I may respond in detail to it.” Manion says he recently received a response from the hospital commander at Camp Lejeune, Capt. Gerard Cox, saying Camp Lejeune would process his request through the Freedom of Information Act.

Eugene Fidell, a professor at Yale and president of the National Institute of Military Justice, said it is unclear whether tinkering with Manion’s performance record could result in judicial punishment. It is possible it might violate any number of complex military regulations governing performance evaluations.

Wasting time smearing Manion, however, also seems like a misplaced priority for Navy mental health officials battling an unprecedented military suicide epidemic during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. In 2008, for example, 42 Marines committed suicide and 146 tried to do so. During the recent Pentagon’s second annual Suicide Prevention Conference, the military announced that 52 Marines committed suicide in 2009, surpassing the national average.

Manion agreed. “That’s precisely what I was trying to address,” Manion said. “It is a crisis of suicides.”

Mark Benjamin is a national correspondent for Salon based in Washington, D.C. Read his other articles here.
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Re: The how and why of whistleblower smears

Postby admin » Mon Mar 28, 2016 5:29 am

Camp Lejeune whistle-blower fired: A psychiatrist who tried to prevent Fort Hood-style violence among Marines about to "lose it" instead loses his job
by Mark Benjamin
November 15, 2009

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Last April, two Marines at Camp Lejeune predicted to a psychiatrist that some Marine back from war was going to “lose it.” Concerned, the psychiatrist asked what that meant. One of the Marines responded, “One of these guys is liable to come back with a loaded weapon and open fire.”

They weren’t talking about Marines suffering from a tangle of mental and religious angst, like news reports suggest haunted the alleged Fort Hood shooter, Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan. The risk they reported at Camp Lejeune was broader and systemic. Upon returning home, troops suffering mental health problems were getting dumped into an overwhelmed healthcare system that responded ineptly to their crises, the men reported, and they also faced harassment from Marine Corps superiors ignorant of the severity of their problems and disdainful of those who sought psychiatric help.

As Dr. Kernan Manion investigated the two Marines’ claims about conditions at the North Carolina military base, the largest Marine base on the East Coast, he found they were true. Manion, a psychiatrist hired last January to treat Marines coming home from war with acute mental problems, warned his superiors of looming trouble at Camp Lejeune in a series of increasingly urgent memos.

But instead of being praised for preventing what might have been another Fort Hood massacre, Manion was fired by the contractor that hired him, NiteLines Kuhana LLC. A spokeswoman for the firm says it let Manion go at the Navy’s behest. The Navy declined to comment on this story.

While military officials and the media examine whether the Army missed warning signs that might have indicated an unhinged Nidal Hasan was capable of killing 13 people at Fort Hood, Manion’s Camp Lejeune story is a cautionary tale of what happens to those who blow the whistle on conditions for military personnel with mental problems.

Manion says the April incident with the two Marines was just one of a series of disturbing events and serious problems with mental healthcare he saw at Camp Lejeune, a base that may be best known for a water contamination scandal that led to high rates of cancer and birth defects among Marines and their families who lived there. He was particularly concerned to see that troubled Marines were stricken with the overwhelming impulse to commit suicide or murder, telltale signs of severe combat stress.

In a telephone interview from his Surf City, N.C., home, Manion talked of overburdened staff and inadequate resources at the Naval hospital at Camp Lejeune. The psychiatrist charged that medical officials failed to study and discuss violent events among returning Marines in an effort to prevent further, similar events, and did little planning to improve handling distraught Marines who were killing themselves and others in shocking numbers. In 2008, for example, 42 Marines committed suicide and 146 attempted to do so, according to the Marine Corps.

Coincidentally or not, within 12 hours of Hasan’s shooting spree, Camp Lejeune officials discovered the body of one Marine and took into custody another Marine, Pvt. Jonathan Law, who is accused of killing his colleague. Law, who had served a seven-month tour in Iraq, was suffering from self-inflicted wounds when arrested.

Mirroring reports from military installations across the country, Manion also reported harassment of Marines seeking mental help. The psychiatrist began to worry about the possibility of a major outburst of violence on the base.

“A significant number of Navy medical officials and Marine commanders do not get it,” a frustrated Manion said about the situation at Camp Lejeune. “They do not understand the implications of what happens if somebody loses it,” explained Manion, who has 25 years of experience as a psychiatrist and who also specializes in traumatic brain injury — exactly the kinds of skills needed so desperately at military hospitals, because mental problems and brain injuries are the signature wounds of the ongoing wars. “People either commit suicide, commit homicide, get drunk, beat up the wife, all these things. I’ve seen it,” he added. “That is how serious this is and they just don’t get it.”

Manion believes he likely prevented a “Columbine-style attack” late last April after the two Marines who warned that someone might “lose it” directed him to a third Marine who seemed on the verge of violence. Manion also provided his superiors with documentation showing troubling incidents and neglect for the needs of returning Marines that could easily precipitate violence. Maybe not on the scale of the massacre at Fort Hood, but more like the rampage by a frustrated Sgt. John Russell, who gunned down five fellow soldiers at a military mental health facility in Baghdad last May.

Manion provided to Salon a stack of correspondence with superiors, a virtual crystal ball predicting dire consequences if mental healthcare at Camp Lejeune isn’t immediately improved.

In an April 24 memo to his superiors, including Cmdr. Robert O’Byrne, head of mental health for the Camp Lejeune Naval Hospital, Manion describes a frustrated Marine punching a telephone pole with his bare fists outside a treatment clinic, then storming around, cursing, with a piece of lumber with a nail in it, though nothing was done to ensure he didn’t hurt himself, again, or others. In another case, a severely homicidal and suicidal Marine pounded his fists into a table and stormed out of treatment. Yet the hospital, Manion complained to his superiors, made no efforts to discuss these cases or how to better handle similar events in the future.


“There was — and continues to be — no means of discussion of high-intensity/dangerous cases such as this,” a desperate Manion wrote on April 24. He warned of “immediate concerns of physical safety” at the base’s mental health facilities. Manion wanted to set up special protocols for handling intense situations, such as having specially trained MPs ready to intercede if things got bad, and a plan to hospitalize potentially violent patients quickly. “They dragged their feet on that,” he told me.

Within days that April, Manion intervened with the two Marines who’d warned of colleagues potentially losing it. They directed him to a third Marine who they believed was going to go on a shooting rampage. Manion worked hard to get that Marine into treatment, possibly averting bloodshed. The two Marines involved also reported harassment for working limited duty while seeking mental healthcare for themselves. They heatedly claimed that two noncommissioned officers had recently told them, “I don’t care why you are on [limited duty]. You are nothing but worthless pieces of shit,” according to an April 29 e-mail Manion sent to O’Byrne and others, complaining about such attitudes.

Like many healthcare providers at military bases across the country, Manion technically worked for a military contractor, Spectrum Healthcare Resources, a subcontractor for NiteLines Kuhana LLC.

On June 24, a supervisor for the contractor warned Manion to stop making trouble. “Kernan Manion, it is requested that you cease and desist all further correspondence with the government,” the supervisor with NiteLines, Pamela Friend, wrote to Manion.

But Manion was still frustrated that Camp Lejeune did not seem to be taking these risks seriously. On Aug. 30, he appealed to a series of military inspectors general in a written complaint. He warned of an “immediate threat of loss of life and/or harm to service members’ selves or others” if conditions did not improve. He complained of a “complete disregard for … implications for patient safety and well-being.” He decried that officials at Lejeune had ignored “repeated overt and emphatically stated concerns about the very safety and overall welfare of the affected patients.” And he warned that “many patients’ lives are imminently at risk.”

Four days later, the contractor fired Manion “effective immediately,”
according to his termination e-mail. The note provides no reason for the firing. Manion was directed to clean out his office the next day, under the watchful eye of a chief petty officer, and have no further contact with his patients.

In a statement to Salon, NiteLines said the Navy wanted Manion fired, but did not explain why. “The treatment facility at Camp Lejeune notified (Nitelines) that Dr. Manion did not meet the Government’s requirements in accordance with the contract, and they directed he be removed from the schedule,” it reads.

Salon e-mailed the spokesman for the Naval Hospital Camp Lejeune, Raymond Applewhite, with details of this story and then described some of these facts with him in a follow-up telephone call, requesting an interview with O’Byrne. The Navy did not respond further.

Manion left Camp Lejeune after he got fired, but he did not stop worrying about the potential for violence there. In mid-September, Manion filed a 14-page complaint with the Department of Defense inspector general. On Sept. 29, he warned the Navy’s Bureau of Medicine and Surgery inspector general in writing of “serious mismanagement of post-deployment mental health services that was both endangering patient, staff and community safety as well as severely compromising the quality of care” for returning Marines. Manion noted that the poor care at Camp Lejeune continued despite “the ever present threat of life-threatening violence by distraught service members towards themselves or others.”

Finally, Manion wrote President Obama that same day. “Frankly, in my more than 25 years of clinical practice, I’ve never seen such immense emotional suffering and psychological brokenness — literally a relentless stream of courageous, well-trained and formerly strong Marines deeply wounded psychologically by the immensity of their combat experience,” he wrote to the president. Manion added, however, that at Camp Lejeune, that immense problem was being met with “inadequate treatment” and “callous indifference.”

He still worries. “I don’t like seeing these guys mistreated,” Manion said. “This is akin to somebody dying on the battlefield and not being attended to,” he added. “These guys are saying they are broken and need help, and the system is saying, ‘next, next, next.'”

Mark Benjamin is a national correspondent for Salon based in Washington, D.C. Read his other articles here.
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Re: The how and why of whistleblower smears

Postby admin » Mon Mar 28, 2016 5:44 am

Reporter Refuses to Name Sources Who Smeared DOJ Whistleblower
By Marshall Chriswell
October 19, 2008

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On September 11, we reported on the whistleblower case of former federal prosecutor Richard Convertino. Mr. Convertino has brought a Privacy Act action against the US government for leaking disparaging information with the goal of smearing Mr. Convertino in retribution for blowing the whistle on DOJ mismanagement of terrorism investigations. Last month, Federal Judge Max Cleland ordered Detroit Free Press reporter David Ashenfelter to appear and testify in depositions regarding the identity of his confidential DOJ sources who leaked the information.

Now, Mr. Ashenfelter is still refusing to testify, in violation of Judge Cleland’s order. Steve Kohn, who is Mr. Convertino’s attorney, has indicated that Mr. Ashenfelter could be held in contempt for his actions. This story has been reported nationwide, including articles with the Associated Press and in The Detroit Free Press
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Re: The how and why of whistleblower smears

Postby admin » Mon Mar 28, 2016 5:51 am

Justice Department Takes Hit in "War on Whistleblowers"
by whistleblowers.org
June 22, 2012

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Washington, D.C. June 22, 2012. In a dramatic setback for the U.S. Department of Justice’s “War on Whistleblowers,” the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia today reversed a district court decision that had thrown out the Privacy Act case of former U.S. prosecutor Richard Convertino.

The Privacy Act case, which accused the former Bush Administration of illegally leaking information to smear the reputation of Mr. Convertino, was reinstated by the Appeals Court. The Appeals Court opinion permits Mr. Convertino to continue to conduct discovery in order to learn which current and/or former Justice Department officials violated the Privacy Act with their actions against Mr. Convertino.

Mr. Convertino is a former award-winning prosecutor who led several complex terrorism cases at the Department of Justice. In 2003, Mr. Convertino blew the whistle on former Attorney General Ashcroft’s handling of terrorism prosecutions. Shortly thereafter, high-ranking Justice Department officials retaliated by leaking highly disparaging and untrue information about Mr. Convertino to Detroit Free Press reporter David Ashenfelter. In 2004, Mr. Convertino filed a Privacy Act complaint to protect his rights as a whistleblower and sanction the official(s) who illegally leaked the information about him.

Stephen M. Kohn, Executive Director of the National Whistleblowers Center and lead counsel for Mr. Convertino, stated:

The Justice Department’s policy of criminally investigating whistleblowers who ‘leak’ information, while at the same time aggressively defending its own ‘leakers,’ is hypocritical. In Mr. Convertino’s case, the Justice Department intentionally leaked information to destroy the reputation of the distinguished prosecutor who had the courage to challenge the Attorney General’s conduct in the ‘War on Terror.’ Moreover, the Justice Department has, for years, aggressively stood in the way of Mr. Convertino’s attempts to discover which official(s) retaliated against him.

The Appeals Court’s decision in Mr. Convertino’s case is a monumental victory for whistleblowers.

The Justice Department’s double standard in the treatment of ‘leakers’ is intolerable. The Attorney General should not protect those who leak information at the government’s request and simultaneously prosecute whistleblowers trying to alert the public about waste, fraud and abuse.

Attorney General Holder must immediately reverse its position in the Convertino case and join with the whistleblower in finding out who violated the Privacy Act and the laws prohibiting retaliation against whistleblowers.
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Re: The how and why of whistleblower smears

Postby admin » Mon Mar 28, 2016 5:59 am

Interview with Jeffrey Wigand
with Mike Wallace
60 Minutes
February 4, 1996

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Below is a transcript of the 60 Minutes broadcast with Dr. Wigand that was finally shown on February 4, 1996. It was originally scheduled months earlier, but was delayed and almost buried completely. It wasn't until the Wall Street Journal published Dr. Wigand's Mississippi testimony that CBS reconsidered, and allowed the show to run.

Participants:

Mike Wallace, CBS 60 Minutes correspondent
Dr. Jeffrey S. Wigand, Former B&W executive
Gordon Smith, Brown and Williamson attorney
Mike Moore, Attorney General of Mississippi
Thomas Sandefur, former President/CEO B&W
Merrell Williams, former paralegal for B&W law firm [shown only on camera]
Dr. Stanton Glantz, Professor of Medicine, University of California Medical Center, San Francisco
Kendrick Wells, assistant general counsel,formerly staff attorney, B&W [shown only on camera]
Lucretia Wigand, wife [at the time] of Dr. Jeffrey Wigand
Two daughters of Dr. & Mrs. Wigand [only seen at distance on camera]

[Introduction]

Wallace: [voiceover showing footage of Dr. Wigand in "60 Minutes" frame]
Which is true?

[voiceover showing footage of Gordon Smith in "60 Minutes" frame]
What the tobacco men at Brown & Williamson say about their former research director, Dr. Jeffrey Wigand ...

Smith: His life has been a pattern of lies.

Wallace: [voiceover showing footage of Mike Moore in "60 Minutes" frame]:
or what the Attorney-General of Mississippi says about him?

Moore: The information that Jeffrey has, I think is the most important information that has ever come out against the tobacco industry.

Wallace: [voiceover showing footage of Dr. Wigand in "60 Minutes" frame]
Tonight, Jeffrey Wigand, the scientist whose insistence on defying his former employer has led him to tell what he believes to be the truth about cigarettes.

What is it that he believes to be the truth about cigarettes? And what is it that Brown & Williamson believes to be the truth about him?

[Beginning of segment]

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Wallace: [in studio]

A story we set out to report six months ago has now turned into two stories: how cigarettes can destroy peoples' lives and how one cigarette company is trying to destroy the reputation of a man who refused to keep quiet about what he says he learned when he worked for them. The company is Brown & Williamson, America's third largest tobacco company.

[speaking in front of backdrop showing picture of Dr. Wigand surrounded by cigarette packs and title of segment: Jeffrey Wigand Ph.D. Produced by Lowell Bergman]:

The man they set out to destroy is Dr. Jeffrey Wigand, their former three-hundred-thousand-dollar-a-year director of research. They employed prestigious law firms to sue him, a high-powered investigation firm to probe every nook and cranny of his life. And they hired a big-time public relations consultant to help them plant damaging stories about him in the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, and others. But the Journal reported the story for what they thought it was: "scant evidence" was just one of their comments.

CBS management wouldn't let us broadcast our original story and our interview with Jeffrey Wigand because they were worried about the possibility of a multi-billion dollar lawsuit against us for tortious interference, that is, interfering with Wigand's confidentiality agreement with Brown & Williamson.

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But now, things have changed. Last week, the Wall Street Journal got hold of and published a confidential deposition Wigand gave in a Mississippi case, a November deposition that repeated many of the charges he made to us last August. And while a lawsuit is still a possibility, not putting Jeffrey Wigand's story on "60 Minutes" no longer is.

Scene: Dr. Wigand; video of Brown & Williamson Tower building, Louisville, KY; cigarettes and loose tobacco on conveyer belt; Dr. Wigand; Brown & Williamson Tower building, Louisville, KY; cigarettes in cigarette machine and loose tobacco on conveyer belt; footage of tobacco company executives swearing oath to tell truth before House Subcommittee on Health & Environment, April 1994

Wallace: What Dr. Wigand told us in that original interview was that his former colleagues, executives of Brown & Williamson Tobacco, knew all along that their tobacco products, their cigarettes and pipe tobacco, contained additives that increased the danger of disease. And further, that they had long known that the nicotine in tobacco is an addictive drug, despite their public statements to the contrary, like the testimony before Congress of Dr. Wigand's former boss, B&W's Chief Executive Officer Thomas Sandefur.

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Sandefur: [testifying before House Subcommittee on Health & Environment, April 1994]
"I believe that nicotine is not addictive."

Wigand: [in office interview with Wallace]
I believe he perjured himself because I watched those testimonies very carefully.

Wallace: All of us did. There was the whole line of people, the whole line of CEOs up there all swearing that ...

Wigand: [in office interview with Wallace]
Part of the reason I'm here is I felt that their representation clearly, at least within Brown & Williamson's representation, clearly misstated what they commonly knew as language within the company. That we're a nicotine delivery business.

Wallace: And that's what cigarettes are for?

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Wigand: Most certainly. It's a delivery device for nicotine.

Wallace: A delivery device for nicotine? Put it in your mouth, light it up, and you're gonna get your fix?

Wigand: You'll get your fix.

Wallace: [in CBS office]
Dr. Wigand says that Brown & Williamson manipulates and adjusts that nicotine fix, not by artificially adding nicotine, but by enhancing the effect of the nicotine through reuse of chemical additives like ammonia, whose process is known in the tobacco industry as "impact boosting."

Wigand: While not spiking nicotine. They clearly manipulate it.

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Wallace: [visual of document]

The process is described in Brown & Williamson's leaf blender's manual and in other B&W documents.

Wigand: There's extensive use of this technology which is called ammonia chemistry that allows for nicotine to be more rapidly absorbed in the lung and therefore affect the brain and central nervous system.

Scene: file drawer full of numbered folders; computer screen showing Brown & Williamson documents on World Wide Web; Merrell Williams walking down street; Dr. Stanton Glantz in his office; JAMA July 19, 1995 issue on Dr. Glantz's desk

Wallace: And then there are these documents, thousands of pages of confidential scientific reports and legal memoranda from B&W's secret files, which experts say support Dr. Wigand's claim that Brown & Williamson's executives had had strong reason to believe all along that nicotine is addictive and that their tobacco products cause cancer and other diseases.

Most of these documents had been locked away in B&W's lawyers' confidential files in Louisville, Kentucky until this man, the paralegal in that law office, Merrell Williams, walked off with them.

The documents found their way to Dr. Stanton Glantz, a professor of medicine at the University of California Medical Center in San Francisco. It was Dr. Glantz and a team of scientists from the university who wrote about the documents this past summer in a series of articles in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Wallace: [to Glantz in Dr. Glantz's office] What is the story that the documents told you?

Glantz: They told me that thirty years ago, Brown & Williamson and British American Tobacco, its parent, knew nicotine was an addictive drug and they knew smoking caused cancer and other diseases.

Wallace: [voiceover video showing Dr. Glantz looking through some documents]
And Dr. Glantz says these documents reveal how Brown & Williamson was keeping that knowledge from the public.

Glantz: And they also developed very sophisticated legal strategies to keep this information away from the public, to keep this information away from public health authorities.

Wallace: Dr. Wigand said that a cigarette is basically a nicotine delivery instrument. That's what it's really all about.

Glantz: Yes, absolutely. And in the documents they say that over and over and over again.

Wallace: [voiceover footage of smokers smoking cigarettes] And finding a way to deliver that nicotine to the smoker's brain without exposing smokers to disease-causing pollutants like tar that come with tobacco smoke is one reason, says Dr. Wigand, that he was hired by B&W on January 1st, 1989.

Image

Wigand: [in office interview with Wallace]

They were looking to reduce the hazards within cigarettes, reduce the carcinogenic components or the list of the carcinogens that were within the tobacco products.

Wallace: They talked about carcinogens too?

Wigand: They talked about carcinogens.

Wallace: They talked about cancer and heart disease and emphysema and all of those things and they were going to work toward making a safer cigarette?

You must have been very excited.

Wigand: I was enthusiastic and energetic in terms of pursuing that.

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Wallace: [voiceover video showing Dr. Wigand perusing books on shelves at home]

Dr. Jeffrey Wigand, with a doctorate in biochemistry, had spent nearly twenty years of working in the health-care and biotechnology industries. He says his goal at B&W was to make a cigarette that would be less likely to cause disease.

Wigand: [in office interview with Wallace]
People will continue to smoke no matter what, no matter what kind of regulations. If you can provide for those who are smoking, who need to smoke, something that produces less risk for them. I thought I was going to be making a difference.

Wallace: [voiceover]
Brown & Williamson made Jeff Wigand Vice-President for R&D, paying him more than three hundred thousand dollars a year in salary and perks.

Wigand: [in office interview with Wallace]
And I was very inquisitive when I came on. Have you ever done any nicotine studies? Have you done any pharmacology studies? Have you done any biological studies? Have you looked at the effect of nicotine on the central nervous system? And always, generally categorically "No, we don't do that kind of work."

Wallace: [voiceover showing Brown & Williamson Tower, Louisville, KY]
But according to thousands of pages, from B&W and its parent British American Tobacco's confidential files, the company had, in fact, done exactly those kinds of studies.

[voiceover showing Dr. Wigand at computer]
Dr. Wigand says he did not suspect there was anything wrong until he attended a meeting of scientists who worked for British American Tobacco companies from around the world. Dr. Wigand says that his colleagues talked about working together to develop a safer, a less hazardous cigarette, a cigarette less likely to cause disease. But when it came time to write up their ideas, to create a documentary record of their discussion, B&W's lawyers intervened.

Wigand: [in office interview with Wallace]
The minutes that came in, they were roughly about eighteen pages long. I knew what was in the content. They were rewritten by Kendrick Wells. They were ...

Wallace: Who is he?

Wigand: Kendrick Wells was one of the staff attorneys at B&W.

Wallace: And he rewrote the minutes of the meeting?


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Wigand: He rewrote the minutes of the meeting. He edited out the discussions on uh safer cigarette and basically toned the meeting down ...

Wallace: You're saying that one of the staff attorneys for B&W here in the United States whose name was ...

Wigand: Kendrick Wells.

Wallace: An attorney, rewrote the minutes of this research meeting with all of the research heads of BAT Industries?

Wigand: That's correct.

Wallace: in order to sanitize it, in effect?

Wigand: Sanitize it as well as reduce any type of exposure associated with discussing a safer cigarette. When you say you're going to have a safer cigarette, that now takes everything else that you have available and say it is unsafe. And that, from a product liability point of view, gave the lawyers great concern.


Wallace: [voiceover footage showing Kendrick Wells walking down street]
Kendrick Wells, the lawyer Dr. Wigand says deleted materials from the minutes of the scientific meeting is now the assistant general counsel of B&W.

Why would B&W lawyers like Kendrick Wells be so concerned?

According to B&W's own confidential files, any evidence, any documents that show any B&W tobacco products like Kools or Viceroys might be unsafe, those documents would have to be produced in court as part of any lawsuit filed by a smoker or his surviving family.

And according to the lawyers, those documents could be disastrous for B&W.

[to Wigand in office interview]
For the lawyers to hold ...

Wigand: The lawyers intervene and then they purge documents. And every time there was a reference to the word "less hazardous" or "safer."

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Wallace: [voiceover showing Dr. Wigand sitting at his desk]

But Dr. Wigand says the lawyers' interference, their editing and review of his reports, did not stop him.

Wigand: I started asking more probing questions and I started digging deeper and deeper. As I dug deeper and deeper, I started getting a bodyguard.

Wallace: What do you mean, bodyguard?

Wigand: I went to a meeting. I now was now accompanied by a lawyer. My bodyguard was Kendrick Wells.

Wallace: [voiceover showing Dr. Wigand sitting at his desk; photo of Thomas Sandefur holding hand on forehead]
Frustrated by the lawyer's intervention and presence at major scientific meetings, Dr. Wigand says he took his complaints to Thomas Sandefur, then the president of B&W.

Wallace: [to Wigand]
What did he say to you?

Wigand: I don't want to hear any more discussion about a safer cigarette.

Wallace: [voiceover photo of Thomas Sandefur at hearing table with outstretched arm]
And he says Thomas Sandefur went on to tell him ...

Wigand: "We pursue a safer cigarette, it would put us under extreme exposure with every other product. I don't want to hear about it anymore."

Wallace: All the people who were dying from cigarettes?

Wigand: Essentially, yes.

Wallace: Cancer?

Wigand: Cancer.

Wallace: Heart disease, things of that nature?

Wigand: Emphysema.

Wallace: [voiceover showing a smiling Thomas Sandefur at hearing, April 1994]
Lawyers representing B&W and Thomas Sandefur have said that all this as well as other accounts of conversations with Thomas Sandefur are absolutely false.

[voiceover showing Dr. Wigand in office interview with Wallace]
We asked Dr. Wigand what his reaction was to what he says was Sandefur's decision to abandon the safer cigarette.

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Wigand: I said I got angry.

Wallace: He was your boss.

Wigand: I bit my tongue. I had just transitioned from another, one company to another. Uh, I was paid well and was comfortable. And for me to do any precipitous would put my family at risk.

Wallace: You were happy to take down the three hundred thousand bucks a year?

Wigand: I essentially, yeah, took the money. I did my job.

Wallace: [in his own CBS office]
So Dr. Wigand abandoned his idea of trying to develop a new and safer cigarette. He turned his attention to investigating the additives, the flavorings, the other compounds in B&W tobacco products. Many, like glycerol, which is used to keep the tobacco in cigarettes moist, are normally harmless. But when glycerol is burned in a cigarette, its chemistry changes.

Wigand: [in office interview with Wallace]
Glycerol, when it's burnt, forms a, a very specific substance called acrolein.

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Wallace: According to the American Council on Science and Health, "Acrolein is extremely irritating and has been shown to interfere with the normal clearing of the lungs. Recent research shows that acrolein acts like a carcinogen, acrolein, or 'acroli-en' is extremely irritating and has been shown to interfere with the normal clearing of the lungs. Recent research shows that acrolein acts like a carcinogen, though not yet classified as such."

[voiceover footage showing young people smoking]
And Dr. Wigand says that B&W continues to add glycerol to their products.

But it was another additive that Dr. Wigand says led to the end of his career at B&W.

Wigand: [in office interview with Wallace]
The straw that broke the camel's back for me and really put me in trouble with Sandefur was a compound called coumarin.

Wallace: [voiceover video showing young woman smoking; documents on which clearly written "% COUMARIN"]
Coumarin is a flavoring that provides a sweet taste to tobacco products but is known to cause tumors in the livers of mice. It was removed from B&W cigarettes, but according to these documents, B&W continued to use it in its Sir Walter Raleigh aromatic pipe tobacco until at least 1992.

Wigand: [in office interview with Wallace]
And when I came on board B&W, they had tried to tran, transition from coumarin to another similar flavor that would give the same taste. And it was unsuccessful.

Wallace: [voiceover]
Dr. Wigand says the news about coumarin and cancer got worse.

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This report, by independent researchers, part of a national toxic safety program, presented evidence that coumarin is a carcinogen that causes various cancers.

Wigand: [in office interview with Wallace]
I wanted it out immediately. And I was told that it would affect sales and I was to mind my own business. And then I constructed a memo to Mr. Sandefur indicating that I could not in conscience continue with coumarin in a product that we now know, have documentation that is lung-specific carcinogen.

Wallace: Really? You sent the document forward to Sandefur?

Wigand: I sent the document forward to Sandefur. I was told that we would continue working on a substitute and we weren't going to remove it because it would impact sales and that, that was his decision.

Wallace: In other words, what you're charging Sandefur with and Brown & Williamson with is ignoring health considerations consciously?

Wigand: Most certainly.

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Wallace: [voiceover video showing Dr. Wigand at his office desk]
After his confrontations over coumarin, Dr. Wigand says he was not surprised when on March the 24th, 1993, Thomas Sandefur, newly promoted to Chief Executive Officer, CEO of B&W, had him fired.

[to Wigand in office interview]
And the reason for firing that he gave you?

Wigand: Uh, Poor communication skills, uh, just not cuttin' it, poor performance.

Wallace: [voiceover video showing Dr. Wigand, his wife and two daughters saying grace before meal at home]
When Dr. Wigand, who has a wife and two young daughters, was fired by Brown & Williamson Tobacco, his contract provided severance pay and critical health benefits for his family, critical because one of his children requires expensive daily health-care.

[voiceover showing video of Mrs. Wigand serving dinner]
Several months after he was fired, B&W decided to sue their former head of R&D and they cut off his severance and those vital health benefits.

Wigand: [in office interview with Wallace]
They said I violated my confidentiality agreement by discussing my severance package.

Wallace: [voiceover video showing Jeffrey and Lucretia Wigand walking together]
Lucretia Wigand says that the firing and B&W's suspension of benefits was devastating.

Lucretia Wigand:
[in office interview with Wallace]
We almost lost our family as a unit. Jeff and I almost separated.

Wallace: Why?

Lucretia Wigand:
Because he was under so much stress and so much pressure that it was something we needed help dealing with. We went to counseling and we worked through it.

Wallace: And this was, you think, started, triggered by the business with B&W.

Lucretia Wigand:
Yes, I know it was.

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Wallace: [voiceover video showing Jeffrey and Lucretia Wigand at home in kitchen; "Dear Jeff" confidentiality agreement]
B&W settled that lawsuit we mentioned and reinstated those critical health benefits, only after Dr. Wigand agreed to sign a new, stricter, lifelong confidentiality agreement.

[in CBS office]
Nonetheless, word of Dr. Wigand's battles with Brown & Williamson attracted attention in Washington, where in the Spring of 1994, a Democratic Congress and the FDA, the Food and Drug Administration, were investigating the tobacco industry. Dr. Wigand was contacted by their investigators. And after notifying Brown & Williamson, he talked with those investigators.

Shortly afterwards, he was stunned by a couple of anonymous telephone calls.

Wigand: [in office interview with Wallace]
In April 1994, on two separate occasions, I had life threats on my kids.

Wallace: What?

Wigand: We had life threats on my kids.

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Wallace: [showing Dr. Wigand referring to his diary]
Dr. Wigand told us he doesn't know where they came from, but that, understandably, they frightened him.

He described the threats by referring to his diary.

Wigand: [reading from his diary]
A male voice that was on the phone that said: "Don't mess with tobacco anymore. How are your kids?"

And then on April 28th, around 3 o'clock in the afternoon, relatively the same voice, says: "Leave tobacco alone or else you'll find your kids hurt. They're pretty girls now."


So I got scared. I started carrying a gun.

Wallace: Really?

Wigand: Yeah, started carrying a handgun.

Lucretia Wigand:
[in office interview with Wallace]
Someone called and threatened to, to kill him and to hurt the family if he messed with the tobacco industry.

Wallace: [in studio with segment backdrop depicting Dr. Wigand]
That was last August. Now, in February, Lucretia Wigand has filed for divorce, citing spousal abuse, just one of the accusations Brown & Williamson is using in their full-throated campaign to discredit Jeffrey Wigand.

That report when we return.

[break]

Wallace: [in studio]
Today, three years after he was fired by Brown and Williamson, Dr. Jeffrey Wigand is the star witness in a U.S. Justice Department criminal investigation into the tobacco industry, which includes the question of whether B&W's former CEO lied to the U.S. Congress when he said that he believed that nicotine was not addictive. But Dr. Wigand is paying a heavy price for his decision to testify as well as for breaking his confidentiality agreement by talking to us. His family life has been shattered. His reputation has been tarnished because of B&W's massive campaign designed to silence him and to discredit this former research chief turned whistle-blower.

[to Wigand]
They're trying to do what they can to paint you as irresponsible, a liar.

Wigand: Well, I think the word they've used Mike is, "The Master of Deceit."

Wallace: You wish you hadn't come forward? You wish you hadn't blown the whistle?

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Wigand: [hesitating]
There are times I wish I hadn't done it. But there are times that I feel compelled to do it. Uh, if, if you asked me if I would do it again or if it, do I think it's worth it. Yeah. I think it's worth it. Uh, I think in the end people will see the truth.

Wallace: [in studio]
Well these three men have seen the same truth as Wigand. They are the state Attorneys' General of Florida, Minnesota and Mississippi where Dr. Wigand is testifying in a multi-billion dollar lawsuit against the tobacco industry. Mike Moore is Attorney General of Mississippi.

Moore: Uh, Jeffrey's testimony is gonna be devastating, Mike, to the tobacco industry. Uh, so devastating that I fear for his life. Uh, I think, uh ...

Wallace: You serious?

Moore: I'm, I'm very serious. Uh, the information that Jeffrey has, I think, is the most important information that has ever come out against the tobacco industry. Uh, this industry, in my opinion, is an industry who has perpetrated the biggest fraud on the American public in history. Uh, they have lied to the American public for years and years. They have killed millions and millions of people and made a profit on it. So, uh, I hope that they won't continue to lie and try to destroy Jeffrey like they destroyed the other lives of people all over this country.


Wallace: [in studio]
The campaign to destroy Dr. Jeffrey Wigand began over two months ago in the midst of a media frenzy over our failure to broadcast our August interview with him. Brown and Williamson sued Dr. Wigand for talking to us despite his confidentiality agreement and they got a court order in Kentucky to try to silence him from speaking out further.

[against scene of wall with sign, "The Investigative Group, Inc."]
Then investigators hired by B&W fanned out across the country looking for anything they could use to discredit the whistle-blower.

Wigand: They been going around to my family, my friends, digging up and digging here and digging there.

Wallace: [in studio]
Then their lawyers, and B&W has a half dozen major firms working on the Jeff Wigand case. Their lawyers compiled the results of their nationwide dragnet into a summary that alleges that in recent years Dr. Wigand plead guilty to everything from wife-beating to shoplifting. Beyond that they charged him with a multitude of sins from fudging his resume to making a false claim three years ago for ninety-five dollars and twenty cents for dry cleaning.

[against scene of John Scanlon walking down a New York street]
Then Brown and Williamson retained John Scanlon to get their story to the media.

Scanlon is a fixture of the New York media scene who has close personal relationships with print and television reporters and producers as well as editors and publishers. We asked him to sit down and discuss the charges he has been circulating to me and other reporters but he declined. But Scanlon did make this statement to a CBS News camera crew.

Scanlon: He's running ... from cross-examination. His victims have decided to respond and present evidence that he's, in fact, a habitual liar.


Wigand: [in studio interview]
The smear campaign that's been very systematic, very organized, very well-done.

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[in classroom to students]
My background is, I have a PH.D. in biochemistry.

Wallace: [in studio]
Today Dr. Wigand is a 30,000 dollar a year science teacher at a Louisville Kentucky public high school. And his students, his faculty colleagues, and his family were stunned last month when a Louisville television station broadcast some of Brown and Williamson's accusations.

Local News Anchor:
[broadcasting local news]
Court records show Wigand was charged with theft by unlawful taking and shoplifting.

Wallace: [in studio]
Then the Brown and Williamson 500-page dossier on Wigand was given to the Wall Street Journal, who investigated the charges. And last Thursday in this front page story, the journal reported, quote,

"A close look at the file and independent research by this newspaper into its key claims indicates that many of the serious allegations against Dr. Wigand are backed by scanty or contradictory evidence". And they continued, quote,

"Some of the charges, including that he pleaded guilty to shoplifting are demonstrably untrue".
We put that Journal statement to Gordon Smith, an attorney designated by Brown and Williamson to talk to us.

[to Gordon Smith]
The Wall Street Journal went through all of that material. It says that, what the dossier that you put together, scant evidence ...

Smith: Mr. Wallace, that is dead wrong. There's not scant evidence. The Wall Street Journal did not, did not go over the scores, literally scores of untruths told by Jeffrey Wigand that we showed to them.

Wallace: [voiceover]
And Gordon Smith went on at some length to say that Wigand's life quote, is a pattern of lies.

[to Smith]
I don't understand, frankly, Mr. Smith. I really don't understand. Brown and Williamson must be in a panic if they're going after this man as hard as you are.

Smith: You're wrong. There are no material inaccuracies in that book. None whatsoever.

Wallace: [voiceover]
But not included in that dossier were Brown and Williamson's own personnel records which showed that Wigand had received good performance appraisals for the first three years from B&W. In his fourth year, however, those appraisals turned sour. But despite that, even after he was fired he received this letter from Brown and Williamson's personnel director.

[reading letter to Smith]
To whom it may concern. Dr. Jeffrey Wigand was instrumental in the development of new products as well as the major impetus behind a significant upgrade in our R&D technical capabilities both in terms of people and equipment. During his tenure at Brown and Williamson, Dr. Wigand demonstrated a high level of technical knowledge and expertise.

[Referring to stationary on Smith's desk]
And this is on your own stationary. Your own man saying that about him.

Smith: Mike, Brown and Williamson refused to be a reference for Jeff Wigand after he left. This letter was negotiated with his attorney and it was the only statement Brown and Williamson would ever make about him because Brown and Williamson did not want to be a reference for Jeff Wigand.

Wallace: [voiceover]
And Mr. Smith had this to say about our relationship with Jeffrey Wigand.

Smith: You're being led along by a guy who's not believable. You're getting half the story. You, you, and you've got, you've got a, a vested interest in making this man credible.

Wallace: Why do we have a ...

Smith: CBS has an interest, paid this guy twelve thousand dollars.

Wallace: For what?

Smith: I believe for consulting.

Wallace: Now, wait just a moment. Let's get this straight. Paid him twelve thousand dollars for what?

Smith: To consult on a story on CBS.

Wallace: [in studio]
For the record, as we explained to Mr. Smith, 60 Minutes did, in fact, hire Dr. Wigand two years ago to act as our expert consultant to analyze nearly a thousand pages of technical documents leaked to us not from Brown and Williamson but from inside Philip Morris -- another tobacco company. At that time Dr. Wigand told us he would not talk with us about Brown and Williamson and he did not until over a year later.

Wigand: I felt an obligation to tell the truth. Uh, there were things I saw. There were things I learned. There were things I observed that I felt that needed to be told. The focus continues to be on what I would call systematic and aggressive tactics to undermine my credibility and my, some of my personal life. Uh ...

Wallace: But you expected that, didn't you?

Wigand: Well, I didn't expect, to the extent that it's happened, okay? Its, its disrupted not only my life. Uh, I'm in divorce proceedings now.

Wallace: [voiceover in studio with three Attorneys General]
These three state Attorneys General say that no matter B&W accusations are, they remain convinced that what Wigand has to say about the tobacco industry in general and Brown and Williamson in particular is thoroughly credible. They are suing the tobacco industry for the billions of dollars in state Medicaid costs their states have paid to treat people who have become ill from smoking.

Minnesota Attorney General Hubert Humphrey the third.

Humphrey: We want to see the full truth come out. We want the deception, fraud and the violations of our state laws stopped. And we want people that are making the money on this product to bear the full cost of the health care uh, burden that is there.

Wallace: [voiceover]
Bob Butterworth is the Attorney General of Florida.

Butterworth:
The issue has been deceit.

Wallace: Deceit?

Butterworth:
Pure and simply -- deceit. The cigarette companies made a decision that they would withhold valuable information from the American public, information that the consumer would need to make a[n] intelligent decision as to whether or not they wish to smoke or not to smoke.

Wallace: [voiceover]
Again Mississippi Attorney General Mike Moore.

Moore: I'm used to dealing with, with cocaine dealers uh, and crack dealers and I have never seen damage done like the tobacco company has done. Uh, there's no comparison. Cocaine kills 10, 15 thousand people a year in this country. Tobacco kills 425 thousand people a year.

Smith: [in Smith's office]
Mike, its absurd to suggest that tobacco is any way like cocaine in terms of addiction. Its absolutely absurd to suggest that. Brown and Williamson makes a lawful product. They sell it and make it in a lawful way.

Wallace: Well then why do 425 thousand people die every year according to all medical and scientific evaluations, die of smoking cigarettes? Why?

Smith: Mike, fifty million people choose to use tobacco and smoke.

Wallace: So, on a cost benefit ratio, its only 425 thousand people who die out of the fifty million.

Smith: No, Mike.

Wallace: That's, that's a small fraction. Is that the point you're making?

Smith: No, Mike. Not at all. People choose to smoke. People choose to stop smoking. I think you used to smoke and you chose to stop smoking.

Wallace: That's right.

Smith: Its their choice. Its a lawful product. Its marketed and manufactured lawfully.

Wallace: [in studio]
B&W has questioned Dr. Wigand's character. But he says that's just a smoke screen and he has some questions for Brown and Williamson.

Wigand: Why aren't they dealing with the issue of whether they can develop a safer cigarette? Why aren't they dealing with the issue of using, knowingly using uh, additives that are known to be carcinogenic in order not to influence sales. Why don't we deal with that issue?

Wallace: [in studio]
Brown and Williamson did answer some of Dr. Jeffrey Wigand's question[s] for us.

They told us they have removed coumarin -- that's carcinogenic flavoring from their Sir Walter Raleigh aromatic pipe tobacco. But they insist it never posed a health risk to smokers.

B&W lawyer Kendrick Wells declined to talk to us, but he did deny, in testimony last week, Dr. Wigand's charge that he had altered the minutes of that scientific meeting.

And B&W says the truth will come out in the end when they get a chance to cross examine Dr. Wigand under oath. And they insist we, CBS, cannot report on this story objectively since we are indemnifying Dr. Wigand in B&W's lawsuit against him.

Two month's ago CBS agreed to do that after a leak resulted in the disclosure of Dr. Wigand's identity before he was prepared to go public. Though still unaware of where that leak had come from, CBS decided to take financial responsibility for the impact that leak had on Dr. Wigand because it exposed him to a lawsuit by Brown and Williamson.

A footnote.

This banner headline ("The Courier-Journal: Indictments soon in B&W probe -- smuggling plot, bribes"), yesterday in the Louisville Courier Journal -- B&W's hometown newspaper, about charges their employees had engaged in smuggling and bribes in Louisiana. In that story the U.S. attorney in New Orleans says, "Look for some indictments in the very near future."
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Re: The how and why of whistleblower smears

Postby admin » Mon Mar 28, 2016 6:48 am

Part 1 of 2

Deposition of Dr. Wigand
In re Mike Moore, Attorney General, ex rel, State of Mississippi Tobacco Litigation, No. 94-1429 (Chancery Ct., Jackson, Miss.)
November 29, 1995

This is a portion of the transcript of a session of the pretrial deposition of Jeffrey S. Wigand. The November 29, 1995 testimony was given in a lawsuit brought by the State of Mississippi seeking reimbursement for the cost of smoking-related illnesses. (Note: Only Dr. Wigand's testimony is listed here.)

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During testimony, Dr. Wigand was continuously interrupted by the tobacco lawyers in an attempt to "stop the genie from getting out of the bottle". Despite their efforts, Dr. Wigand and Attorney Ron Motley were able to get the facts out.

Testimony transcript

DR. JEFFREY S. WIGAND: having been first duly sworn, was examined and testified as follows:

EXAMINATION BY MR. MOTLEY [Mr. Motley is from Charleston, South Carolina, and is lead counsel for the plaintiffs]:

Q. Will you state your name for the record.

A. My name is Jeffrey, J-E-F-F-R-E-Y, Wigand, W-I-G-A-N-D.

Q. If you will, try to speak into the microphone, Doctor. And I have got you a glass of water over there.

My name is Ron Motley, from Charleston, South Carolina. If at any time you need to take a break, you just raise your hand, and we'll accommodate you, sir. And if you don't understand my question, if you will just acknowledge that, and I will try to rephrase it.

What is your address, sir?

A. I live at 1105 Colonel Anderson Parkway, Louisville, Kentucky 40222.

Q. And are you here today under subpoena, sir?

A. Yes, I am.

Q. Doctor, are you a medical doctor or a doctor of science?

A. I'm a doctor of science. I have a Ph.D. degree in endocrinology and biochemistry.

Q. Endocrinology?

A. Endocrinology, study of hormones.

Q. When did you receive those degrees, sir?

A. Well, I have several degrees. I have a bachelor's in organic chemistry from the University of Buffalo. I have a master's degree in biochemistry from the University of Buffalo. I have a Ph.D. degree from the University of Buffalo in biochemistry and endocrinology. I have a master's in science teaching from the University of Louisville.

Q. Doctor, what is your current job?

A. I'm employed by Jefferson County Public School System. I'm a science and Japanese teacher at du Pont Manual High School in Louisville, Kentucky.

Q. Were you formally employed by Brown & Williamson Tobacco Company?

A. I was employed by Brown & Williamson Tobacco Company from January 1989 until March 24th, 1993.

Q. How was it that you came to be employed by Brown & Williamson?

A. Early in 1988 I responded to an advertisement, I believe either in the New York Times or The Wall Street Journal, looking for a manager of a research function in the Mid-West. I sent my resume' in in response to that advertisement. I was subsequently contacted by phone by Bill Lodenbach, who was a representative of the executive research firm of Heinman & Company. We had some preliminary discussions on the phone, at which time he asked me several questions relative to my understanding of smoking issues and did I have any adverse positions relative to tobacco. That was followed up by an interview in New York City about a month or two later. And then the sequence of events led up to my employment by Brown & Williamson in November of 1988.

Q. And what job were you to hold with Brown & Williamson, sir?

A. The job I was hired for was vice president of research and development for Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation.

Q. To whom did you report?

A. I reported initially to Mr. Tommy Sandefur and then subsequently reported to Mr. Earl Kohnhorst.

Q. Who is Mr. Sandefur?

A. Mr. Sandefur at that time was president and chief operating officer of Brown & Williamson.

Q. And the other gentleman?

A. At the time I joined the company, he was a vice president of strategic planning for BATUS, which was the holding company for Brown & Williamson in the United States.

Q. Is that British-American Tobacco Company of the United States; is that an acronym for that, sir?

MR. BEZANSO [Tom Bezanson from Chadbourne & Parke representing Brown & Williamson] : Object to the form.

A. Yes, sir.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Go ahead, sir. Are you done with your answer.

A. Subsequently, Mr. Kohnhorst returned to Brown & Williamson as executive vice president of research and development, engineering and manufacturing.

Q. Sir, what did you understand to be your mission as the vice president of research and development for Brown & Williamson when you started work there?

A. Well, there were numerous conversations. During the recruitment process, I believe I had more that six interviews, including interviews from people from PAP [BAT] industries. It was my understanding that my charge was to develop a technical organization which was capable of addressing the issues of smoking in the 1980s and 1990s, and that is build a technical organization. I had specific conversations with BAT representatives, Mr. Alan Heard, which dealt with the development of a safer cigarette.

Q. A safer cigarette?

A. A safer cigarette. Also, at the same time, there were discussions in terms of development of an engineered product.

Q. What is an engineered product, sir?

A. A product similar --

MR. BEZANSON: I object and instruct him not to answer. We are getting into trade secret territory.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. You can answer, sir.

A. An engineered product is one that is made artificially, not consisting totally of tobacco, much similar to that of which Premier was.

Q. All right, sir. Premier being an R.J. Reynolds product?

A. That's correct.

Q. All right. Now, Doctor, did you communicate, before you were hired, in writing with officials or representatives of Brown & Williamson about the type of activities that you hoped to be able to undertake if employed in the position of vice president of research and development?

A. There were numerous correspondence going back and forth. I don't think I ever used the word "safer cigarette" in the correspondence, but I clearly understood that from these conversations with Earl Kohnhorst, Mr. Sandefur, Mr. Heard. And I also, at the same time in the interview process, also suggested that a formation of a medical scientific advisory committee could be part of that process of developing a safer cigarette.

MR. BEZANSON: I move to strike as nonresponsive.

MR. MOTLEY: Sir, I would ask you to read the Case Management Order, and I will be glad to let you look at my copy. All objections are reserved, except to the kind that you made a moment ago about privileged matter and trade secrets.

Q. Now, sir, your first day with the company was on January the 3rd, 1989, I believe: is that correct?

A. That is correct.

Q. And your last day with the company was when?

A. March 24th, 1993.

Q. Sir, during the entire time, or shortly after you became employed by Brown & Williamson, did lawyers for the corporation involve themselves in the type of research you were doing?

A. I would say there was direct lawyer intervention in numerous research projects, review of research documents. I believe the first really direct involvement of lawyers in research matters occurred in the fall of 1989.

Q. Would you please elaborate on that for us?

MR. BEZANSON: I object and instruct not to answer if this requires the divulging of attorney/client privilege.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Were there any lawyers in this scientific meeting?

A. There were no lawyers at the scientific meeting.

Q. Were you meeting for the purpose of preparing for a lawsuit?

A. No, we were not.

Q. Okay. Will you please answer, sir?

A. The meeting involved a meeting of all of the research managers of all of the BAT companies. There was representatives from Brown & Williamson, which I was. There was Souza Cruz, which is the Brazilian entity, BATCO, which was the U.K. entity, Germany, which is BAT Cigarettan-Fabriken, and from the Canadian, Imperial Tobacco.

Q. And these were all scientists?

A. These were all scientists, the number one scientist of each and every one of the companies mentioned.

Q. At this meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia, sir, was there a discussion of the effort to develop a safer cigarette, as you have previously described that?

A. That meeting encompassed a number of topics such as nicotine analogues, discussed biological assays and biological testing methodologies, it discussed how to reduce selectively the particular noxae that was in tobacco smoke.

Q. Spell that, please.

A. N-O-X-A-E.

Q. What does that mean?

A. It is plural of noxus.

Q. What does that mean?

A. Poisonous substance.

Q. Poisonous substance. Anything else, sir?

A. How to find various scientific research group studies.

Q. Subsequent to that conference in Vancouver of scientists, was one of the scientists assigned to memorializing, or putting into writing, minutes or summaries of the discussions?

A. Those minutes of the meeting were memorialized by a gentleman by the name of Dr. Ray Thornton. The meeting, really, was conducted by Alan Heard.

Q. Who is Mr. Thornton?

A. Mr. Thornton was the secretary for the meeting but worked for Mr. Heard in the BAT. That generated, I'd say, roughly a 14 to 15 page, maybe more, document which summarized the minutes and the actions of the meeting. Subsequently, those meeting minutes were sent to me. I circulated the minutes throughout the corporation in terms of upper management.

Q. Including Mr. Sandefur?

A. Mr. Sandefur and Mr. Pritchard and those in upper management. At that time, there was significant objection to the content of the meeting, particularly since the meeting referred to non-addictive nicotine analogues. It talked about a safer cigarette. It talked about biological testing. Subsequent to that, a meeting was called in which Kendrick Wells, one of the attorneys --

MR. BEZANSON: I object. We are beginning to get into what sounds like attorney/client privilege. I instruct you to go no further in disclosure of any attorney/client privilege. I further object under Paragraph 16 of the Case Management Order on the grounds that this is a nonresponsive narrative.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Go ahead, sir. You were summoned to a meeting at which Mr. Wells attended?

A. I was.

Q. And who was there other that Mr. Wells?

A. Mr. Sandefur, Mr. Pritchard.

Q. Mr. Pritchard was the top man in the company. Mr. Sandefur was the second man, and Mr. Kendrick Wells was the top lawyer, correct?

A. No. He was not the top lawyer. He was assistant general counsel.

Q. He was the assistant to the top lawyer?

A. That is correct.

Q. And at this meeting, sir, tell us what, if anything, was discussed with reference to the minutes that were prepared by Mr. Thornton of the meeting in Vancouver.

MR. BEZANSON: I object on attorney/client privilege grounds and instruct not to answer.

MR. MOTLEY: You may answer sir.

MR. BEZANSON: Just a moment. I think it may be time for us to go make a phone call to Judge Myers. It sounds to me, having set up a predicate for a discussion with assistant general counsel present, that we're about to engage in discussion of privileged matters.

MR. MOTLEY: Sir, I don't know of anything in the order yesterday that calls for you to call upon Judge Myers when we are conducting the deposition. In fact, the Case Management Order states otherwise. If you want to send someone to try to do that -- This record is sealed, and that is all the protection I think you need.

MR. BEZANSON: The Case Management Order, Paragraph 17 specifically, directs that in circumstances such as this that the witness give the predicate to lay -- to identify that it is an attorney/client privilege matter and at that point, other than by appearance or phone call, the matter can be taken up with the court.

MR. MOTLEY: Well, why don't you send someone to try to find the judge, and I will see if I can get to something that doesn't cause you to be so concerned about this meeting.

MR. BEZANSON: The Case Management Order also calls for suspending at that point so it could be addressed.

MR. MOTLEY: It doesn't call for suspending it if you abate, or move away, from the subject that caused you to be exercised. And I'm about to do that. If you want to send somebody out to see if the judge is available, I won't ask him about Mr. Wells right at this point.

MR. BEZANSON: Are your representations that you will abate this --

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Let me ask you some questions that don't involve anything Mr. Wells may have said in your presence. As a result of this meeting that you described -- I don't want to know what happened at the meeting -- but as a result of the meeting that you described, was there any change made in the minutes of the meeting in British Columbia?

A. Yes.

Q. What change was that?

MR. BEZANSON: I object. I believe you are continuing on in the course of disclosing attorney/client privileged matters.

MR. COLINGO [Joe Colingo from Colingo, Williams, representing R.J. Reynolds]: I think you ought to go off the record and go talk to the judge. This is going to be problematic. I think you ought to stop it right now.

ATTORNEY GENERAL MIKE MOORE: The order doesn't say that.

MR. COLINGO: Well, the order doesn't not say it either. The rules say you can.

ATTORNEY GENERAL MIKE MOORE: The order doesn't say it.

MR. COLINGO: Yes.

ATTORNEY GENERAL MIKE MOORE: It is a sealed deposition. The order does not say that.

MR. COLINGO: Doesn't make any difference.

ATTORNEY GENERAL MIKE MOORE: Well, show me where it says it, Joe.

MR. COLINGO: Well, show me where it doesn't say it. I mean, the rules say that when you have a problem that you can take it up with the court. There is no preclusion of that. I'd go take it up with the court. It is not my deposition, but I sure would.

MR. MOTLEY: I don't understand how you read Paragraph 17 that assists you in any way. It says the witness should go ahead and answer the question.

MR. BEZANSON: Until you get to Paragraph 19 that sets forth the procedure for dealing with disputes during depositions.

MR. MOTLEY: I'll tell you what I'm going to do. I'm going to go forward. And if you want to walk out, you can walk out.

MR. BEZANSON: No. Those are not the proceedings the Case Management Order sets forth under Paragraph 19.

MR. MOTLEY: I don't agree with your interpretation. I'm going forward with the deposition. If I'm wrong, it will be stricken later.

MR. BEZANSON: That is not what the Case Management Order proposes. The Case Management Order proposes that there be no record of a privileged nature. And if disputes arise during depositions that cannot be resolved by agreement and if not immediately resolved will significantly disrupt the deposition schedule, would require a rescheduling of the deposition or might result in the need to conduct a supplemental deposition may be presented to the court by telephone.

MR. MOTLEY: Where do you read into Paragraph 19 anything about a privileged matter?

MR. BEZANSON: We are now having the very kind of dispute arising during depositions --

MR. MOTLEY: No, sir. We are not having a dispute at all. Paragraph 17 specifically says the witness shall nevertheless answer questions. And I'm going to proceed --

MR. BEZANSON: If we are not having a dispute, it sure sounds like it to me. And Paragraph 19 of the Case Management Order dictates how these disputes are to be resolved.

MR. COLINGO: Paragraph 19 states specifically that the court reporter shall attend the judge's conference, right here at the bottom of it.

MR. MOTLEY: Well, when you set it up, I'm sure she will be glad to go.

MR. BEZANSON: Pursuant to Paragraph 19, I instruct the court reporter to suspend operations until we have had an --

MR. MOTLEY: Well, there is nothing in this order that says the court reporter listens to anything you say.

Q. Sir, will you please answer my question and tell me whether or not, as a result of that conference, without telling me who said what, was there any change made in the composition of the minutes which you previously described prepared by Mr. Thornton?

MR. BEZANSON: I continue to object and instruct not to answer. We are not only proceeding in contempt of the TRO, but now with utter disregard to Paragraph 19 of Case Management Order in this case. There is a telephone right here. We can call the judge.

MR. MOTLEY: You got thirty lawyers. Go get him on the phone.

Q. Can you answer my question?

MR. BEZANSON: The harm will be done by the time we get him on the phone if the attorney/client privileged material is disclosed.

MR. MOTLEY: Why don't you send someone to call him?

MR. BEZANSON: You just represented to me a moment ago that you would abate that issue.

MR. MOTLEY: I did. I didn't mention Mr. Wells' name or any advice he gave. The fact that he was at a meeting when something happened doesn't protect you with the attorney/client privilege, sir, despite the fact I understand y'all believe that very heartedly.

MR. BEZANSON: No. I don't believe that. I believe the judge is the one who resolves those matters, neither you nor me, but the judge.

MR. MOTLEY: All right. At Page 36, since you're fond of quoting the judge, the judge said, the court is also going to reserve any and all rulings that might be advanced by any of the parties after the deposition is complete to strike the deposition for whatever means the movement would bring up. Now, you can go find the judge. And if he wants to hear this, I'm glad to stop and go forward. But I'm going forward.

MR. BEZANSON: That does not cover privileged matters.

MR. MOTLEY: Q. Answer my question, please, sir.

A. Can I ask you to repeat the question?

MR. BEZANSON: -- under the Case Management Order --

MR. MOTLEY: Sir, if you continue to disrupt this, I'm just going to walk up there close and let him state his answer for the record. And whether you hear it or not, I care not.

Q. Will you please tell me so I can hear what your answer is?

A. Could you please repeat the question?

Q. Yes. Did they change the minutes?

A. Yes, they did.

Q. Did they eliminate 12 pages of the minutes?

A. Roughly 12 pages of the minutes.

Q. And what did they eliminate, the stuff that said cigarettes were harmful?

A. They eliminated all reference to anything that could be discovered during any kind of liability action in reference to a safer cigarette. Statements were made that anything that eludes [alludes] to a safer cigarette clearly indicates that other cigarettes are unsafe, and it, furthermore, would acknowledge that nicotine is addictive.

MR. BEZANSON: I object and move to strike on the grounds before stated.

MR. MOTLEY: You don't have to make that kind of objection sir. It is preserved.

Q. Let me ask you, sir: How many conversations would you say you had between 1989 and 1993, when you were dismissed by Mr. Sandefur, about cigarette smoking and the addictive nature of nicotine?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY: Go ahead.

A. There have been numerous statements made by a number of officers, particularly Mr. Sandefur, that we're in the nicotine delivery business --

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. The nicotine delivery business?

A. --and that tar is nothing but negative baggage.

Q. Tar is negative baggage. And so, were you in the presence of Mr. Sandefur, the president of the company, when he voiced the opinion and belief that nicotine was addictive?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY: You can answer, sir.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. And did he express that view on numerous occasions?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Frequently.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. I'm going to show you, sir, Mr. Sandefur's testimony under oath before the Congress of the United States when he was sworn to tell the truth.

MR. BEZANSON: May I have a copy, please, of anything marked and being shown to the witness?

MR. MOTLEY: This will be Exhibit 10.

(Exhibit 10 was marked.)

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Can you see that on the screen, sir?

A. Yes.

Q. Do you see what I have highlighted, sir?

A. I cannot see it.

Q. See?

A. Yes.

Q. Now, sir, pursuant to the Case Management Order --

Will this be on the TV for the jury or the judge or whoever sees it?

Do you see where I have highlighted where Mr. Sandefur swore to tell the truth under oath under penalty of perjury what he told the Congress of the United States?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Do you see what he said, sir?

A. Yes, I do.

Q. He said, "I do not believe that nicotine is addictive." Do you see that?

A. Yes I do.

Q. Is that the opposite, contrary to what he has expressed to you numerous times?

A. That is correct.

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. It is not true, is it?

A. It is not true.

Q. Did you have any discussions, sir, with Mr. Sandefur -- By the way, Mr. Sandefur was a sales guy, wasn't he? He wasn't a lawyer, correct?

A. Was he a lawyer? No, he wasn't.

Q. He was a salesman at one time for R. J. Reynolds?

A. Yes, he was.

Q. Now, can you tell me, sir, whether Mr. Sandefur at any time sought to keep you, Jeffrey Wigand, from attempting to develop or conduct research that would lead to the development and marketing of what you have described as a safer cigarette?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Will you describe how he did it as best you can?

A. Shortly after the Vancouver meeting, Sandefur called me to his office and told me that there would be no further discussion or efforts on any issues related to a safer cigarette, even though there was research being conducted in both Canada and in the U.K. in removing selectively noxae.

Q. That's the term you defined earlier as poisonous substance?

A. Tar.

Q. Okay.

A. And that any activity or elusion [allusion] to a safer cigarette would be deathly contrary to the company's position relative to liability issues associated with smoking and health issues and that that matter would not be pursued any further and I was not to discuss it anymore. He also told me at that time there will be no scientific and medical advisory committee to provide direction or support to the development of a safer cigarette.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike as nonresponsive, pursuant to Paragraph 16.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Dr. Wigand, were you a designee or representative of Brown & Williamson who was to attend certain industry tobacco-industry-wide trade association meetings?

A. From time to time, yes.

Q. Were you allowed to go -- Those are meetings to discuss scientific matters?

A. That's correct.

Q. Were you allowed to go to those meetings alone, or were you required to take some kind of person with you?

A. Depends on the type of meeting. A number of times I went to meetings, particularly on ignition propensity, I was accompanied by a lawyer.

Q. Ignition propensity?

A. Ignition propensity.

Q. Is that sometimes called a fire safe cigarette?

A. Fire safe cigarette, yes.

Q. And they sent a lawyer with you?

A. That's correct.

Q. Was this lawyer a scientist?

A. No, he was not.

Q. Sir, when you were the director of research and development, how many people did you have working for you?

A. I believe I was the vice president of research and development.

Q. What did I say?

A. Director.

Q. Okay. I'm sorry. As vice president, were you the director?

A. Yes.

Q. So I am right. How many folks did you have working for you?

A. At the end, approximately 243 scientists and workers.

Q. And did you have a budget? Do you recall having a budget?

A. I had a budget.

Q. What was that, approximately?

A. That was approximately 28 to 30 million dollars in operating expense and between 4 to 7 million dollars in capital expense.

Q. Sir, as part of you orientation, if I can use that, were you required to go to Kansas City, Missouri to meet with the lawyers of Shook, Hardy & Bacon?

A. That was one of the things that was accomplished during my orientation.

Q. And without telling me anything they told, what was the general nature of what you were asked to do while you were at the law firm?

A. Was review the scientific literature, what has been published on smoking and health issues, Swedish Twin studies, Auerbach studies.

Q. Review them with whom?

A. With the attorneys at Shook, Hardy & Bacon.

MR. BEZANSON: Object and move to strike the answer. You're beginning to trench into work product and attorney/client privilege areas that was not telegraphed by the questions. So I move to strike on attorney/client privilege and work product grounds.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. In the course of your tenure at Brown & Williamson, did you become interested in whether or not there had been, before you joined the company, research on such things as nicotine, whether it was addictive, or biological activity of cigarettes and things like that?

A. Yes, I did.

Q. Did you inquire as to whether that research was conducted, and, if it was, were the reports of the findings available to you as vice president?

A. The research work that preceded me?

Q. Yes. Were you told that it existed?

A. I was not told it existed. I was not made available to those studies. However, in the various meetings with some of the senior folks, not only in my group, but folks that had long tenure in the company as well as overseas meetings, I learned that various studies were undertaken, particularly relative to nicotine, nicotine ranges, biological activity, biological studies, looking at contrasting of various biological activity of various types of blends, various types of cigarettes.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike everything following his statement that he wasn't told.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. So what you just described for the jury and the court under oath was the type of studies you were asking about and learned may have indeed been conducted; is that correct?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. That's correct. It was totally alien to what I experienced in the pharmaceutical and biomedical industry. If I was an advisor, I would never be precluded from understanding what research transpired over 20 years prior to me taking a position.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Would you say, sir, that company officials suppressed information of a scientific nature that you considered to be important in discharging you mission as vice president of research and development?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. There was no disclosure of that information.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Would you characterize that as a suppression?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. You say you later learned in informal conversations with other scientists that research had, in fact, be conducted. At any time while you were employed by Brown & Williamson, did the lawyers for Brown & Williamson ever explain to you what had happened to the copies of those researches?

MR. BEZANSON: Object and instruct not to answer on attorney/client privilege grounds.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Did the lawyers tell you what happened to that paper?

A. No, they did not.

MR. BEZANSON: Object and instruct not to answer on attorney/client grounds and request we adjourn so we may petition the court for a ruling on the proper bounds of attorney/ client privilege which Brown & Williamson in no way, shape or form waives and which is not the province of Mr. Wigand to discuss as it is Brown & Williamson's privilege undertaken while he was a representative and employee of Brown & Williamson.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. How about Mr. Sandefur, the salesman, did he ever tell you what happened to those studies?

A. No, he did not.

MR. MOTLEY: We need to change the tape. Do you want to take a little break?

THE WITNESS: Please.

(A recess was taken.)

MR. MOTLEY: For the record, I don't know whether you have been able to find Judge Myers, but we tried to find Judge Landrum.

MR. BEZANSON: We have been trying to locate the judge and have yet been unsuccessful.

MR. MOTLEY: She is trying to find Judge Landrum in the event you want to inquire of him about your attorney/client privilege.

Q. Are you ready to start, sir?

A. Yes.

Q. Dr. Wigand, to your personal knowledge, did at any time Mr. J. Kendrick Wells, associate general counsel of Brown & Williamson, alter scientific research?

MR. BEZANSON: Object and instruct not to answer on attorney/client privilege grounds.

MR. MOTLEY: You can answer sir.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. He did. On how many occasions?

A. Several.

Q. How do you know that, sir?

A. Well, he changed the minutes of the meeting in Vancouver to delete anything that could be discoverable.

MR. BEZANSON: Object and move to strike on attorney/client privilege grounds.

A. (Continuing) Documents of research conducted at BAT, South Hampton, to be pre-screened by Kendrick Wells prior to dissemination to the R&D folks.

MR. BEZANSON: Objection. Instruct not to answer and move to strike on attorney/client privilege grounds. And can we re-double our efforts to locate the judge?

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Did Mr. Wells stamp "scientific research" with any type of stamp, sir?

MR. BEZANSON: Object. Attorney/client privilege grounds and instruct not to answer. And in accordance with the terms of the Case Management Order, request that we suspend the deposition until such time as we can have this matter resolved by the court.

MR. MOTLEY: You can answer the question, sir.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. He did?

A. Yes.

Q. As a scientist, did you take objection to lawyers reading your scientific work?

A. Yes, I did, as well as many of the other scientists at BAT.

Q. They did that in your presence?

A. That's correct.

Q. And as a scientific, sir, did you find it scientifically unethical that a lawyer would edit or suppress information contained in a scientific report?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Did you, sir?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you complain about that?

A. Yes.

Q. To whom did you complain?

A. To Sandefur, to Kohnhorst, to Wells. The principle behind his editing documents was removing any reference that would be discoverable during any kind of liability action.

MR. BEZANSON: Object and move to strike on attorney/client privilege grounds.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. And Mr. Sandefur, the former salesman and president of Brown & Williamson, how did he receive your objections to Mr. Wells' suppressing and editing scientific studies?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. He supported it.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. He supported Mr. Wells' efforts in suppression?

A. That's correct.

Q. On more than one occasion?

A. On several occasions.

Q. In fact, sir, did Mr. Sandefur have a position that if science affected sales, the science would take the back door?

MR. BEZANSON: Object.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Did he express that to you?

A. Several times.

Q. Indeed, sir, was that the policy of Brown & Williamson while you were there so far as you observed it?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. And, sir, did you make complaints about that particular type of policy, that is sales over safety?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. I had a number of discussions with Mr. Sandefur, particularly over safety issues. I felt that the additives as they were reviewed and the policy within B&W did not adequately use what I considered the proper duty of care on a scientific level. It was inconsistent with what was being done overseas in other BAT affiliates as well as what I knew was going on in the other industries.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike, nonresponsive with respect to Paragraph 16 of the Case Management Order.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Sir, at any time did you learn that Brown & Williamson was using a form of rat poison in pipe tobacco?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. What form of rat poison is that, sir?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. It is a compound called coumarin. It was contained in the pipe tobacco --

MR. BEZANSON: Object on trade secret grounds and instruct not to answer.

MR. MOTLEY: You are objecting that the man is revealing that you used rat poison as a trade secret?

You may answer, sir.

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Go ahead. If they used rat poison in pipe tobacco that human beings were taking in their bodies, I want to know about it. Will you tell me about it, sir?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. I was concerned of the continued use of coumarin in pipe tobacco after the coumarin had been removed from cigarettes because of the FDA not allowing the use of coumarin in foods with additives. The reason why it stayed in pipe tobacco is the removal would change the taste of the pipe tobacco and, therefore, affect sales. They continued to use it until the time I left, even after the NT program --

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. What is that, NT?

A. I'm sorry. The National Toxicology program released evidence that coumarin was lung-specific carcinogen.

Q. That means a cause of cancer?

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike as nonresponsive, and object to the form of the pending question.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Carcinogen being a cause of cancer?

A. That's correct.

Q. And you asked that coumarin be removed, and you were told what?

A. I asked --

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Sir, you can answer the question. To whom did you make your request --

A. I made that specific --

Q. -- that coumarin be removed because it was a form of cancer-causing substance?

MR. MOTLEY: Object to the form.

A. Once it had been released in the NTP study, even though it was still being used in Sir Walter Raleigh aromatic tobacco at significantly higher levels, other pipe tobacco manufacturers had removed it. There was clearly a document in B&W's file that the use of coumarin was in direct conflict with existing B&W policy on additives.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike as nonresponsive.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Let me see if I understand you correctly, sir. You learned that coumarin had been taken out of cigarettes because it was dangerous, and you learned that coumarin had been taken out of other companies pipe tobacco because it was dangerous, and you requested that coumarin be taken out Sir Walter Raleigh pipe tobacco; is that fair?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Is that what you said?

A. Yes, I did.

Q. And what did Mr. Sandefur tell you when you asked him to take that rat poison out of that particular pipe tobacco?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. We got into a very significant debate. I'd probably consider it an argument. And that it could not be removed because it would impact the sales of the STP business particularly since the aromatic pipe tobacco was one of the higher selling products.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. And until the day that you were dismissed by this same former salesman, Mr. Sandefur, the president and CEO of Brown & Williamson, did they continue to have coumarin in the pipe tobacco that you described?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. They did?

A. Yes.

Q. Sir, were you the senior person in research and development?

A. Right.

MR. MOTLEY: Excuse me.

Q. Sir, this product that you described that had coumarin in it, was it nationally distributed, to your knowledge?

A. Yes, it was.

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. It was distributed all over the United States, including Mississippi.

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. That is correct.

Can we just do it standing?

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Well, that is what he is supposed to do, but since they can't find the judge, I guess he decided to do it otherwise.

You were the senior person in research and development?

A. Yes, I was.

Q. And there was no scientist or researcher with the company higher than you in the structure of the company; is that correct?

A. In terms of experience and education?

Q. No. You were the top management guy in research and development?

A. Yes.

Q. And one of your jobs was to report to and consult with and give advice to Mr. Sandefur, was it not?

A. That is correct.

Q. Would you say generally Mr. Sandefur was receptive to your ideas to try to find a safe cigarette?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Was he receptive to your advice and counsel about trying to find a safe cigarette?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. No.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. What did he say to you in general in the various times you recommended a search for a safe cigarette?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY: You can answer.

A. That there can be no research on a safer cigarette. Any research on a safer cigarette would clearly expose every other product as being unsafe and, therefore, present a liability issue in terms of any type of litigation.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Have you, sir, had brought to your attention since you left Brown & Williamson documents which predated your employment by Brown & Williamson which demonstrated that this attitude of worry about a safe cigarette spilling over and affecting litigation -- Let me start over again.

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form until such time and further object on --

MR. MOTLEY: I withdrew it. I withdrew it. Do you object to my withdrawing it?

MR. BEZANSON: Not a bit.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Let's start over. Have you seen documents, Doctor, since you left Brown & Williamson which deal with law department involvement in scientific policy issues?

A. Yes.

MR. BEZANSON: Object on attorney/client grounds and instruct not to answer. Since you answered, move to strike.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Do those documents that you have seen generally reveal that prior to your employment with Brown & Williamson, the same Mr. Wells was involved in editing and suppressing scientific research?

A. Yes.

MR. BEZANSON: Object on attorney/client privilege grounds and instruct not to answer and request that we be furnished copies of these documents so we can review them, further, specifics of the attorney/client privilege objections and instructions.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Do you, sir, have a particular document in mind just generally as you sit here today, since you don't have any documents in front of you, that would reflect what you just said?

A. All one has to do is go on the internet.

Q. And what would one find on the internet that would support what you just said?

MR. BEZANSON: Object.

A. I think you'd either find it on the internet, or I think you could find it published in JAMA magazine.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. And these are documents that reflect Mr. Wells doing what?

MR. BEZANSON: Object and instruct not to answer, attorney/client grounds. Please specify for us the documents you are referring to so we can review it further for specifications for the objections.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Sir, are you saying that these documents that he is claiming privilege to are in a magazine put out by the American Medical Association?

A. It appeared in a recent Journal of the American Medical Association publication. It is also available on the internet.

Q. And --

MR. BEZANSON: Objection on attorney/client grounds continues because these documents were stolen, and there was no waiver of -- We have good reason to believe the documents were stolen, and there is no waiver of the attorney/client privilege on that ground.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Who would steal such important documents as that?

A. I didn't.

Q. You didn't? Can you tell me, sir, these documents you referred to involve Mr. Wells?

A. There are a number of documents that involve Mr. Wells' actions in terms of dealing with scientific documents.

Q. And they predated these documents that showed him editing and suppressing scientific research by Brown & Williamson? Did they predate your employment with Brown & Williamson?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form and instruct with respect to the privilege.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. They did. And you say these documents are reported in a medical magazine put out by the American Medical Association?

A. They are put out in a referee journal which is the Journal of the American Medical Association. They are also available to anybody who wants to get on the internet.

Q. Now, sir, I want to ask you some questions about how your job performance was evaluated while you were at Brown & Williamson. Did you have annual or periodic job performance reviews?

A. Yes, I did.

Q. And how did you do?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Overall, above average performance.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. And, sir, did you receive the Quality Leadership Award from your research colleagues at B&W?

A. Yes, I did.

Q. And what was that?

A. They gave me a eagle that cited on it "For Quality Leadership To Our Friend, Mentor and Coach."

Q. And do you still have that?

A. I most certainly do.

Q. And do you have copies or have access to copies of the commendations of performance that you say you received from Brown & Williamson?

A. Yes, I do.

Q. Now, sir, did you maintain a log or a diary, a written log or diary in the laboratory at Brown & Williamson while you were employed there?

A. I maintained two logs.

Q. Would you describe them one after the other?

A. I had a standard research notebook that many scientists in the laboratory generate on a daily basis which reflects their work or comments or their reflections on work, what meetings. I kept a log in a bound scientific notebook, numbered page, that really reflects contemporaneously things that happened. I do not have that. That was sequestered from me when I left Brown & Williamson. However, I also have another diary which is a duplicate.

Q. And where is that diary, sir?

A. In my possession.

Q. And, sir, have you recorded in any fashion your recollections of events -- Have you recorded -- Excuse me -- I don't want you to tell me where it is, but just generally, have you recorded somewhere --

A. I have a videotape, and I put it in a secure place, of everything that has transpired while I was at Brown & Williamson in which I actually taped myself.

Q. Discussing the events that occurred?

A. Discussing the events that occurred back to when I first joined the company.

Q. And did you discuss in that video the inference of suppression by Mr. Kendrick Wells and Mr. Sandefur of scientific research?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Did you, sir?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you discuss the other matters in that video that you have in a safe place, the other matters we've discussed so far in a general way?

A. Yes, plus more.

Q. Plus more. And we've not indeed even gotten started good, sir, on my questions.

Sir, have you been requested to serve in a scientific consulting fashion with the Food & Drug Administration of the United States Government?

A. Yes, I have.

Q. Have you been asked to give testimony by the United States Department of Justice in an antitrust investigation currently being undertaken against Brown & Williamson and others?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes, I have.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. And were you subpoenaed, sir, to come to Pascagoula, Mississippi and to give testimony to the Department of Justice this morning?

A. Yes, I was.

Q. And did you appear, attend and give testimony under oath?

A. Yes, I did.

Q. Sir, have you been subpoenaed to appear before a federal grand jury, criminal grand jury in regard to matters relating to the tobacco industry?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes, I have.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. And do you fully intend to cooperate with the U.S. Department of Justice and the grand jury in this inquiry?

A. Yes, I do.

Q. Sir, can you tell me why you felt it necessary to record and store in a safe place by videotape what you learned and what happened to you at Brown & Williamson?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. I'm sorry. I was--

MR. MOTLEY: Can you tell us, share with us, why you felt it necessary to do by videotape and place in a safe place your recollection of the events that occurred while you were at Brown & Williamson?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. On April 22nd, 1994 I received a threat on my daughters. On April 28, 1994, I received a second threat warning me further. At that time, I went to the local FBI. I reported it. I was concerned for the welfare of my children. I became concerned for my own welfare. And I thought I'd chronicle and memorialize if something ever happened to me.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike.


MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Sir, were you recently served with a lawsuit by Brown & Williamson in your hometown of Louisville, Kentucky?

A. It's the second time.

Q. The second time that you were served. Will you describe for the court, for his information, how it was you were served with the papers that let you know they were suing you?

A. This time or the first time?

Q. This time.

A. I was leaving du Pont Manual High School, and I was proceeding to my car with two other teachers. I don't know who the service officer was, but he drove across the parking lot rather abruptly in a high speed. At that time, he almost hit the other two teachers walking. He pulled his car in front of my car and jumped out and said, Jeff, you are served.

Q. Did you know the gentleman?

A. No. But he was a danger, I think.

Q. Did you feel that this was an invasion of your rights?

A. First of all, it was trespassing on school property. Second of all, he could have done it in a much more professional manner. I would have accepted the lawsuit at my home. He did not have to do it in the school in the manner in which he did it.


Q. Sir--

A. I was just wondering if there was an objection.

Q. No, they don't object to you being served that way, I'm sure.

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the comment on the absence of objection.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Can you tell me, sir, whether or not you, while with Brown & Williamson, recommended that a toxicologist be hired by the company?

A. I recommended a number of different skill sets be hired by the company, in particular Brown & Williamson never had a toxicologist, in the matter in which additives were reviewed within the company do not meet state-of-the-art nor what I would consider technical due diligence. No testing was done either on the additive before or after use or as a result of pyrolysis. It was a paper process.

Q. That is--

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike as nonresponsive.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. I don't think he is done yet. But pyrolysis is in lay language, what is that?

A. A pyrolysis is burning. I was concerned that many additives that were being used were generally approved based on grass, were generally recognized as safe, as well as FEM approval, which was basically for ingestion or topical application. Most of the additives used by the industry, at least at Brown & Williamson, are burnt. And I think there are different burning fates associated with additives when they are burnt rather that when they are ingested or topically applied. In order to do that in what I considered a duty of care manner, I thought a professional toxicologist that was board certified be hired.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. And, subsequently, was a toxicologist hired?

A. yes, he was.

Q. Who had to approve the toxicologist that you recommended before he would be hired?

A. Well, I had some numerous battles with the law department.

Q. The law department had to approve who was hired to serve as a scientist for the company; is that correct?

A. Yes.

Q. I want to make sure that I understood correctly what you told me earlier. When communications between scientists at Brown & Williamson or between scientists at British-American Tobacco Company and Brown & Williamson were exchanged in writing, did I understand you to say they had to come through Mr. Wells or his law department first?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. There are a number of reports that were considered sensitive, before I could receive them had to be reviewed by Kendrick Wells.

MR. BEZANSON: Object and move to strike, attorney/client.

A. (Continuing) Some of the reports were never kept on premises. They were sent back.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Back where?

A. Back to BAT, South Hampton, so they would not be discoverable.

Q. You mean in England? They were sent back across the water?

A. That's correct.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike, attorney/client.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. And did they bear any stamp on them that Mr. Wells or one of his underlings may have placed on them?

A. I don't understand.

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form. Instruct not to answer on attorney/client privilege grounds.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Have you seen scientific documents that had something like attorney/client work product, privileged, confidential, prepare for litigation on scientific reports? Did you see those stamps on some of them?

A. On a number of reports, yes.

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. To your knowledge, were these scientific reports prepared for a lawsuit or prepared to try to understand the chemistry of smoke and the biological effect of cigarettes on human beings?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form and instruct not to answer on work product. Attorney/client grounds appear to be elicited.
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Re: The how and why of whistleblower smears

Postby admin » Mon Mar 28, 2016 6:49 am

Part 2 of 2

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Can you answer, sir? Were they done for lawsuits or were they done to try to find out more about the chemistry and scientific aspects of cigarettes?

A. They were basically--

MR. BEZANSON: Repeat the objections.

MR. MOTLEY: Go ahead. The jury in Laurel will love this. Go ahead. Were they done--

A. They were prepared on scientific research conducted in South Hampton, which Brown & Williamson was paying for, partly.

Q. Did any of those documents say, this is a document we are going to use in the lawsuit of Ms. Haynes verses Liggett & Myers and others in New Jersey or anything like that?

A. No. You surprise me.

Q. Sir, can you tell me, as the vice president of Brown & Williamson, what you came to understand the relationship between British-American Tobacco and Brown & Williamson was as far as ownership?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. BAT Industries-- Brown & Williamson is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BAT Industries.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. And BATUS again is what?

A. Okay. I think you have to put it in a perspectus of time.

Q. Okay. When you first got there, what was BATUS?

A. BATUS was the holding company for Brown & Williamson as well as Sax Fifth Avenue, Marshal Fields and other subsidiaries.

Q. You mean to tell me British-American Tobacco owns Sax Fifth Avenue?

A. Yes.

Q. I'm going to have to take my tie off. And what did BATUS become later?

A. BATUS was dissolved, and Brown & Williamson reported directly into BAT Industries.

MR. CRIST [from Jones, Day, Reavis & Pogue also representing R.J. Reynolds]: Excuse me. I think we have some new folks that came in. I'm not sure if they are authorized to be here, but I did want to raise that point. I don't know who they are.

MR. MOTLEY: They are all--

MR. CRIST: There have been a bunch of folks wondering around back there.

MR. MIKHAIL [Charles Mikhail, State of Mississippi]: They are Amy Martin and Lana Tillman, paralegals from Scruggs, Millette.

MR. CRIST: Thank you.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Sir, what was your compensation package valued at when you joined the company Brown & Williamson?

A. Somewhere around $300,000.

Q. And did you enjoy the opportunity of purchasing stock?

A. Yes, I did.

Q. In the company that you worked for, did you, in fact, purchase stock?

A. I had ADRs.

Q. For those of us who don't work for corporations, what does that mean?

A. American depository receipts.

Q. To your knowledge, when you were there, 1989 and 1993, what other tobacco companies worldwide did British-American Tobacco Company either fully own or have an ownership interest in?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. They had a 49 percent in Imperial Tobacco, which is the Canadian; they had 100 percent owner in Souza Cruz, which is their Brazilian; they had 100 percent ownership of BATCO, which is the U.K.; 100 percent ownership in BATCF.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. What's that?

A. BAT, Hamburg cigarette in Fabriken, which is the German subsidiary, Wills in Australia and a host of others.

Q. Do you know whether British-American Tobacco Company markets tobacco products in so-called third-world countries?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes, they do.

MR. MOTLEY: In regard to Imperial Tobacco Company, were you ever shown a secret study called Project 16 about targeting children for sales of cigarettes?

My question, sir, is: When you were with Brown & Williamson, were you ever told or did you ever see a secret study called Project 16 in which they sought ways to target children as purchasers of tobacco products?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. No, I did not.


MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Did the BAT affiliated companies cooperate on research projects on an international basis?

A. Yes, they did.

Q. Did they share research results?

A. Yes, they did.

Q. Did you regularly communicate with scientists involved with BAT or other affiliated companies?

A. Yes, I did.

Q. Did you regularly get scientific reports from England?

A. Both regularly and irregularly.

Q. Did there come a time when you were cut off from certain research projects?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. There was a process set up where Kendrick Wells would pre-read documents--

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike.

A. (Continuing) As a result, a number of people in BAT, South Hampton, were sending reports to me at my home via a fax machine so I could read them and edit them and send them back.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Let me understand. The regular procedure that was set up was for Kendrick Wells to review scientific writings before you got them; is that correct?

MR. BEZANSON: Object.

A. Not in all cases. What was considered sensitive, issues; biological research, safer cigarette or the noxae.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike as attorney/client privilege.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. So with respect to those types of scientific documents that were considered sensitive that dealt with biological research, addiction -- did I hear you say nicotine addiction -- noxae, you were not allowed to directly receive these documents, but they first had to be sent to Mr. Wells; is that correct?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form and instruct not to answer on attorney/client grounds.

MR. CRIST: I also object. You misstated the witness' testimony.

MR. MOTLEY: Go ahead, sir. You can answer.

A. I'm sorry, your question again?

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. This process by which Mr. Wells was to review documents, scientific documents that you described, not all of them, but the ones you described, before you saw them, how long did that occur?

MR. BEZANSON: Object.

A. Sometimes I never saw it.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. You never saw them. In other words, they'd be sent to him, and they died right there on his desk?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. No. He'd send them back to U.K.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. But some of those documents you saw because other scientists would send them to you at your home by fax?

A. Yes. They'd like my opinion, particularly as it related to biological research and nicotine pharmacology.

Q. So nicotine pharmacology was indeed one of the sensitive areas that Kendrick Wells was monitoring before you could get documents; is that correct?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form and instruct on attorney/client privilege.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Is that correct?

A. That is correct.

Q. Were you ever given access to, while you were with Brown & Williamson, a research project entitled Hippo? H-I-P-P-O?

A. I was not given the documents. However, I learned of a number of projects completed before I was there, particularly with people like Elmo Litzenger, Bob Johnson, also during some of the research policy group meetings or technical reviews. there was always somewhat of a side bar conversations of projects that had been done in the past. I received from one of the scientists in BAT, South Hampton, the nicotine study that looked at the boundaries of nicotine pharmacology effect.

Q. What do you mean by the boundaries of nicotine pharmacology effect?

A. There was a study done early on, I think sometime in the late '70s, early '80s, that looked at the margin of the pharmacological effects of nicotine. And there was a draft that was presented that had from .4 to 1.2 milligrams of nicotine were required, in that range, to maintain smokers.

Q. What do you mean by "maintain smokers"?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. What do you mean by that?

A. Keep them using the product.

Q. In other words, keep them purchasing the product in order to maintain the level of satisfaction for nicotine?

A. That's correct.

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. To your scientific knowledge, did Brown & Williamson ever engage in the manipulation of nicotine levels in tobacco products?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. They did? Brown & Williamson, it is your testimony, manipulated nicotine levels?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes, they did.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Yes?

A. Yes.

Q. How did Brown & Williamson manipulate levels of nicotine in cigarettes?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. There are a number of ways you manipulate nicotine levels. One way is to use additives.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Go ahead.

A. Those additives are usually in the form of nitrogenous bases.

Q. I'm going to interrupt you every now and then so you can explain what a scientific term is. What does nitrogenous bases mean?

A. Nicotine as it exists in a plant for tobacco is locked up in an inactive form as a sol [salt]. In order to free that sol [salt] to be pharmacologically active, you need to change the pH. You need to change the pH of tobacco. You also need to change the pH of the smoke, such that you convert total nicotine to free nicotine. Free nicotine is pharmacologically active. Nicotine as a sol [salt], as in the tobacco itself, is not pharmacologically active.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike as nonresponsive.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. What other ways, sir, did you learn Brown & Williamson manipulated the levels of nicotine in cigarettes?

A. Well, you can also -- They also utilized blending techniques, blending techniques in terms of flue cured to burley ratios as a way of assuring the appropriate nicotine level. The other way is by looking at a genetically-engineered tobacco called --

MR. BEZANSON: Object. We are beginning to get into confidential trade secret matters, and instruct not to answer further.


MR. MOTLEY:

Q. I take it Brown & Williamson is taking the position that it is a trade secret of how they manipulated nicotine.

Go ahead, sir. You can answer.

MR. BEZANSON: Strike the characterization.

MR. MOTLEY: Go ahead, sir.

A. Y-1 was a reading [breeding] project conducted by Dean Ap and Centiments in New Jersey. The intent behind Y-1 was to manage the tar-to-nicotine ratio.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Manage the tar-to-nicotine ratio?

A. Manage the tar-to-nicotine ratio. If you could increase the burley component of nicotine from three and a half, four percent to seven to eight percent, you would substantially change the tar-to-nicotine ratio from twelve to one to five to one and ultimately one to one.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike on confidential and trade secret grounds.

THE WITNESS: It is in the public domain.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. I know it is in the FDA report. But go ahead, sir, and tell us what you know about it since you were there.

MR. BEZANSON: Object and instruct not to answer on trade secret confidential grounds as covered by the TRO that has been entered and the contractual agreements that Mr. Wigand has entered into with the company.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Go ahead, sir. You can tell us about Y-1. I want you to tell us on the record about how the guy hid the seeds and took them down to Brazil. We'll get to that in a minute.

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the statement by counsel.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. I suppose hiding seeds in a cigarette pack is a trade secret, too. You go ahead and tell us, sir, what happened with Y-1.

A. Y-1 was a project dedicated towards increasing the tar-to-nicotine ratios. If you can have less mass of tobacco at higher nicotine, you'd essentially be reducing the negative character of smoking, as you'd be reducing tar or maintaining the nicotine delivery at a constant level. That was a way of managing the tar to nicotine ratios, while lowering the tar while maintaining the nicotine.

Q. Did there come a time when someone took seeds to Brazil?

A. Yes, there was.

Q. Would you tell us who and in what way they did that and whether or not that was illegal?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. CRIST: Also object because it calls for a legal conclusion.

MR. MOTLEY: They have lawyers that practice science, and now they' re objecting to a scientist practicing law.

Q. My question simply put, let me start over. Can you tell us whether anyone, to your knowledge, took seeds, tobacco seeds of any kind, to Brazil?

A. Seeds were harvested at Centiments in New Jersey, and they were taken out knowingly when it was illegal to take them out and bring them to Souza Cruz to be grown.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike as nonresponsive.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Souza Cruz is in Brazil?

A. Brazil.

Q. How were these seeds taken from the United States to Brazil?

A. Several times it was taken by Mr. Phil Fisher.

Q. Who is he?

A. He was head of the reblending group.

Q. Of who?

A. Of Brown & Williamson.

Q. How did he take them down there?

A. He carried them in a cigarette pack.

Q. He hid them?

A. He hid them.

Q. You mentioned the word "illegal." How do you know hiding seeds in a cigarette pack and taking from the United States to Brazil is illegal?

MR. BEZANSON: Object.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. How do you know, sir?

A. At the time they were taken out, I knew the law.

Q. And what was that, sir?

A. That you weren't allowed to export seed without approval.


Q. And to your knowledge, did Brown & Williamson obtain approval to take seed and hide it in a cigarette pack and take it to Brazil?

A. No.

MR. BEZANSON: Object to form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. They did not have approval?

A. Did not.

Q. All right, sir. Are there any other ways that Brown & Williamson manipulated nicotine, to your knowledge?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. You can do it through cigarette design, through filtration, through paper design, through blend.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Reconstituted tobacco paper, too?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. The primary form of managing or manipulating nicotine delivery -- and I told you about nicotine. It is in a free state, which is pharmacologic, verses that which is in the bound state. It is by use of ammonia compounds, urea compounds or--

MR. BEZANSON: Object on trade secret confidential grounds. Invoke the provisions of the contracts Mr. Wigand has entered into with Brown & Williamson and the provisions of the TRO. I instruct him not to answer further with respect to any confidential proprietary business or trade secret information.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Go ahead, sir.

A. I can't remember the question.

Q. Let me--

A. There are a number of ways of managing conversion of bound nicotine, intracellular nicotine, to free nicotine. Number 1 is free use of reconstituted tobacco --

MR. BEZANSON: I repeat my objections and instructions as those in intervening discussion of something else.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Okay

A. Through use of ammonia compounds. Any compound that can change pH creates an equilibrium in the rod that freezes [frees] up nicotine. When the cigarette is combusted, urea and other nitrogenous compounds, protein-containing compounds, also form bases. Those bases change pH of smoke. pH of smoke directly affects the continued conversion and impact associated with nicotine delivery.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. While I'm looking for one other thing, Doctor, let me ask you. I neglected to ask you this. While you were at Brown & Williamson, did you ever learn directly or indirectly of Project Ariel, A-R-I-E-L?

MR. BEZANSON: Object and instruct with respect to confidentiality and proprietary business interest and trade secret grounds and instruct not to answer. This is a matter covered by the temporary restraining order as well as contractual agreements.

A. I heard of it. I didn't know the details of it.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. You were not given a copy of it as vice president of research and development?

A. No, I was not.

Q. Project Mad Hatter?

MR. BEZANSON: Object on proprietary business -- proprietary interest and confidential matters, trade secret grounds as provided in the contracts between Mr. Wigand and the company and as put in force by the temporary restraining order issued by the Kentucky court. And in accordance with same, instruct not to answer.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Mad Hatter?

A. I head the name. I did not know the substance of it.

Q. They didn't give you a copy of it?

A. Nor on Hippo or any of the others.

Q. Now, sir, are the methods of nicotine manipulation that you have just discussed well known in the cigarette industry, to your knowledge?

A. Yes.

Q. As a Brown & Williamson scientist, did you ever engage in what I believe is called reverse engineering?

A. Yes.

Q. Would you explain what that is, sir?

A. Reverse engineering is basically a process by which you take apart a competitor's product and you analyze it physically and chemically.

Q. And did your research and development department engage in reverse engineering with respect to other competitors' products?

MR. BEZANSON: Object and instruct not to answer in accordance with the terms of the Mr. Wigand's contract with the companies and the temporary restraining order with respect to the protection of proprietary, confidential and trade secret information.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Did you do that on occasion to determine nicotine delivery procedures that would be reflected in the cigarettes that you analyzed manufactured by other companies?

MR. BEZANSON: Same objection and instruction.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Did you?

A. Yes.

Q. Is that how you are able to answer that these common methods of nicotine manipulation were reflected in the products of people other than Brown & Williamson, using reverse engineering?

A. Particularly in the non-menthol segment.

Q. Now, sir, can you tell us what the Leaf Blenders Manual is?

MR. BEZANSON: Object on the grounds that you are now attempting to elicit testimony with respect to matters that are confidential, and proprietary business and interest and trade secret information covered by the obligations that Mr. Wigand has under contracts that he has entered into with Brown & Williamson and maintain in force and effect under the temporary restraining order entered by the court in Kentucky, in accordance with which I instruct you not to answer.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Can you answer my question, what the Leaf Blenders Manual is?

A. The Leaf Blenders Manual is a comprehensive document that deals with the use of ammonia and ammonia compounds to effectively convert, equilibrate and change nicotine from sol [salt] into a free base.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Did you, sir, Dr. Wigand, have anything to do with a writing or preparing of the Leaf Blenders Manual?

MR. BEZANSON: Same objection and instruction with respect to contractual and TRO obligations.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Did you?

A. I had some editing.

Q. You helped edit it?

A. I helped edit it.

Q. If one were to go looking for this in Brown & Williamson's files, how would I describe it adequately enough for my colleagues here to not be able to claim that they didn't know what I was talking about?

A. Ask for the Leaf Blenders Manual.

Q. Does it have a particular cover; do you recall?

A. I think it has a blue, green cover.

Q. And do you recall how long it is?

A. In terms of pages?

Q. Yes, sir.

A. Probably in the 100 to 150 page range.

Q. Have you ever seen a copy of the Leaf Blenders Manual that is in the possession of someone other than Brown & Williamson?

A. Yes.

Q. Where did you see it?

A. The FDA.

Q. You mean the United States Government agency known as the Food & Drug Administration?

A. That's correct.

Q. So they have a copy of it. Can you tell me, sir, who were the other coauthors of the Leaf Blenders Manual?

A. I was not an author.

Q. Who were the authors? You said you assisted in editing it.

A. Paul Albach, Barron Chuckavoide, Dave Skolden (spelled phonetically). There are several others.

Q. By whom are these folks you've just named employed?

A. B&W.

Q. So this was a B&W manual?

A. Yes.

Q. Have you ever seen any manuals such as the Leaf Blenders Manual that were prepared by scientists employed by other tobacco companies?

A. No, I have not.

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Does B&W, at least did B&W while you were there, use ammonia technology?

MR. BEZANSON: Object and instruct not to answer in accordance with the terms of the contractual obligations undertaken by Mr. Wigand in his agreements with Brown & Williamson and in accordance with the force and effect of the temporary restraining order which has been entered by the court in Kentucky. And in accordance with same, instruct not to answer.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Go ahead. You can answer that question.

A. I'm sorry.

Q. Did B&W use ammonia technology.

A. Yes.

Q. They did?

A. Yes.

Q. What is ammonia technology?

A. Ammonia technology --

MR. BEZANSON: Same objection and instruction.

A. Ammonia technology is the code word for a -- for using nitrogenous bases, whether they be proteins when pyrolyzed give rise to changing pH to ammonia in the form of DAP, ammonia in the form of ammonium hydroxide, ammonia in the form of ammonia gas.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Does the ammonia technology have any influence on the levels of nicotine --

MR. BEZANSON: Same objection and instruction.

A. It doesn't change the total nicotine. What it does primarily is convert bound nicotine to free nicotine.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. And the free nicotine, is that what you previously described has a pharmacological effect?

A. That is correct.

Q. In other words, it acts as a drug on the body?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. It acts as a drug on the body?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. It acts as a drug on the body.

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY: Is there an echo here? Let it carry forward.

Q. Does it act as a drug? And you can carry your objection forward.

A. Yes. It is pharmacologically active. There are a number of studies that confirm that.

Q. Studies by whom?

A. By independent scientists, by BAT scientists.

Q. That confirm that free nicotine is pharmacologically active and is a drug?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes. It produces a physiological response, as the definition of a drug.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Sir, did you learn while you were with Brown & Williamson why nicotine was important to the sale of cigarettes? You were telling us about this graph earlier, and I was wondering why the nicotine, the inclusion of nicotine was important to the ability to sell a cigarette.

A. Nicotine is associated with impact satisfaction, arousal, pharmacological effect that goes across the blood brain barrier. It possesses an order of transmitter activities. Below a certain level of .4 milligrams does not sustain satisfaction. Over 1.2 milligrams becomes too harsh and has too much of an impact, impact associated with the physiological effect associated with nicotine.

Q. Okay. Now, sir, what is -- and I can't pronounce these scientific terms very well at all -- A-C-E-T-A-L-D-E-H-Y-D-E?

A. Acetaldehyde?

Q. Yes.

A. Acetaldehyde is an impact booster that augments the effect of nicotine.

Q. Does this impact booster and nicotine have a synergistic or a combined multiplicative effect on the smoker?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. In what way, sir?

A. It enhances the impact and, hence, is the transport of nicotine.

Q. And did Brown & Williamson, to your knowledge, use this acetaldehyde knowingly in cigarettes to enhance the effects of nicotine on the smoker?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form and object, further, on contractual grounds mentioned before with respect to trade secrets and the proprietary, confidential business information with respect to Mr. Wigand's contracts and the TRO which has been entered. Object and instruct you not to answer.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Can you answer my question?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. They did?

A. Acetaldehyde was an additive that was used.

Q. Additive that was used to boost nicotine effect; is that correct?

A. Acetaldehyde enhances the synergistic effect of nicotine and physiological effect. It is also well documented outside of the tobacco industry.

Q. So if you put that in there with nicotine, you are adding to whatever natural effect nicotine imparts; is that correct?

A. So to speak, yes.

Q. To your knowledge, did Brown & Williamson knowingly add this substance that I can't pronounce to its tobacco products? Did they know what they were putting in there?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form and repeat the instruction.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Did they know what they were putting in there?

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY: Take a break, please.

(A recess was taken.)

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Dr. Wigand, I have been advised by counsel that at your request, because you have had a very busy day, that we stop here, recess here after a few minutes, and we will honor that request.

Can you tell me what the Additives Guidance Panel is?

A. B&W had a group which consisted of two scientists and a lawyer that reviewed --

MR. BEZANSON: I repeat my objection and instruction on contractual and TRO grounds.

(Off the record.)

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Would you tell us what the Additives Guidance Panel is, please.

And you can have your objections carried forward.

MR. BEZANSON: And I add the objection on attorney/client grounds. Instruct the witness, lawyer's advice, not to answer on the additional ground of attorney/client privilege.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. The Additives Guidance Panel was what, sir?

A. Consisting of two scientists and one lawyer.

Q. Now, this Additives Guidance Panel was to give guidance on additives?

A. Was to review additives prior to use of the tobacco products or as an ongoing process of reviewing additives in general.

Q. Was this lawyer who sat on the Brown & Williamson's Additives Guidance Panel a scientist?

A. No, he was not.

Q. Do you remember his name?

A. Kendrick Wells.

Q. Did the Additives Guidance Panel have anything to do, sir, to your knowledge, with litigation in lawsuits?

A. No, it did not.

Q. It provided scientific advice to the company on additives?

MR. BEZANSON: I repeat my attorney/client privilege and contractual and TRO objections and instructions.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Did it give scientific advice?

A. That is correct.

Q. Can you tell me, sir, are you familiar with the law firm called Covington & Burling?

A. Yes, I am.

Q. How are you familiar with that law firm?

A. They were the central repository for all of the additives for all of the tobacco companies and prepared a master list of submissions to HHS.

Q. What do you mean they were the repository?

A. In order to protect the confidentiality associated with various additives company by company, Covington & Burling acted as a central repository and compiled a list based on volume and usage.

Q. In other words, additives were a matter of scientific interest to the companies; is that correct?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes, sir.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. But they had a law firm keeping track of it for them?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. The law firms serves as a central repository for interaction between tobacco companies and HHS. Covington & Burling also prepared what was considered white papers which looked at using outside technical resources to provide some expert or scientific opinions on various additives that were used by the industry for which the industry may or may not have had appropriate documentation.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike as nonresponsive and as having volunteered information not requested by the question but that strayed into attorney/client privilege matters. And, therefore, move to strike. And, again, repeat my instruction to the witness to refrain from disclosing any matters covered by attorney/client privilege.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Sir, to your personal knowledge, did Covington & Burling sometimes edit scientific information on additives?

A. Yes.

MR. BEZANSON: Same objections.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. And now, this is an law firm, correct?

A. That is correct.

Q. Sir, do you know, are you familiar with the term called "document management," the management of documents?

A. Well, it has a number of contexts. I'm not exactly sure what you are asking.

Q. The context of keeping documents in foreign countries so federal agencies in the United States and lawyers and courts can't get access to them. That's what I mean.

A. I'm aware of that.

Q. Did that occur with Brown & Williamson and British-American Tobacco Company?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form and repeat the admonition and instruction and objection with respect to attorney/client privilege.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. How did it occur, to your knowledge?

MR. BEZANSON: Same objection and instruction.

A. Other than what I previous mentioned, documents which reflected meetings that were held offshore that dealt with discoverable matters were brought in and kept at BATUS and read at BATUS, which was the holding company, so that they wouldn't be discovered on B&W property.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Sir, as a scientist, are you of the opinion that nicotine is an addictive drug?

MR. BEZANSON: Objection.

A. My own scientific --

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Your own scientific opinion.

A. Yes.

MR. CRIST: Objection for lack of foundation.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Who called upon you to form an opinion that nicotine was addictive? Might it have been Mr. Sandefur?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. I don't think he ever asked me that question.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Was one of your jobs at Brown & Williamson to become knowledgeable about the pharmacological properties of nicotine?

A. I came to Brown & Williamson with that knowledge already.

Q. Once you were with Brown & Williamson, though, did you further try to learn as much as you could about the pharmacological properties of nicotine?

A. Yes.

Q. And did you express your opinion within the company to people who were interested?

A. I think it was generally recognized that nicotine was addictive.

Q. Generally recognized by whom?

A. By most of the scientists and management.

Q. Of which company?

A. Of Brown & Williamson.

Q. Have you been at professional meetings with scientists from other tobacco companies in the United States where the issue of nicotine and addition were discussed?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Why do you believe nicotine is addictive?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. What is the basis for your opinion, professional scientific opinion, that nicotine is addictive?

MR. CRIST: Objection to the question, lack of foundation.

MR. MOTLEY: Go ahead.

A. I think nicotine is addictive in a number of aspects. First of all, nicotine is a pharmacologically active compound. I think it has been clearly demonstrated that nicotine elicits pharmacological effects. Nicotine crosses the blood brain barrier intact. Nicotine also mimics many of the endorphins, which are the body's natural analgesic compound, pain killers.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Go ahead.

A. I think the reinforcing effect of nicotine is one. I think it is clearly documented in the scientific literature outside the tobacco industry that nicotine is an addictive substance and a drug.

Q. Sir, were you called upon to consult with Dr. Kessler, the head of the Food & Drug Administration, on matters related to the science of nicotine and addiction?

A. Yes.

Q. He found you qualified enough to express opinions to him?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

MR. CRIST: Object on relevancy.

A. I think so.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. And did you in fact impart information to Dr. Kessler on the issue of nicotine's pharmacological effect?

A. I have.

Q. Now, sir, you have told us earlier that you have served as a consultant to the Food & Drug Administration and that you have testified on, I believe, two occasions to the Department of Justice in obedience to a CID; is that correct?

A. Two separate occasions.

Q. And you have consulted with various other agencies in regard to your knowledge of tobacco health effects, have you not?

A. I have.

Q. Now, sir, could you tell the court as a general matter if the subjects we have addressed here today in one form or another have been discussed with these federal agencies or federal lawyers?

A. I think there is -- I think there are matters that have been discussed with the federal agencies that have not been covered today. I would say for all intents and purposes what has been covered today has also been covered with these agencies.

Q. So it has been previously disclosed to agencies of the government investigating either health, safety or legal matters, correct?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Finally, sir, you mentioned to me, sir, that you had received some threats. And I don't want to dwell on this, but I want to ask you, sir, were these threats that were delivered directly to you of a physical nature?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. What was the general nature of these threats delivered to you?

MR. BEZANSON: Objection.

A. I believe up until April 28th of 1994 I religiously reported to Brown & Williamson anytime I was contacted. At that time, I was being contacted regularly by people at Waxman's staff to provide input. I reported it as required by the agreement. And I generally fed that through my attorney in Louisville who fed it to Jim Milliman at the local law firm, and then it was reported to B&W.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. On one occasion, sir, did you meet with B&W lawyers for a period of up to two weeks prior to your giving testimony to the Department of Justice pursuant to a subpoena from the Antitrust Division?

A. Yes.

Q. And you fully disclosed and discussed your testimony with them at that time?

A. I did.

MR. MOTLEY: Excuse me one second.

(Off the record.)

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Did these threats that you have described to your family's well-being occur at any time contemporaneous with your reporting to Brown & Williamson about the matter of the antitrust investigation?

A. It happened after the antitrust investigation.

Q. It did?

A. Yes.

Q. How long after?

A. The testimony deposition on the CID I gave on January 24th. The threats came on April 22nd and April 28th of 1994, both directed to my children. And they basically stated, and I'd have to go read them to you exactly, but one is, we have warned you, don't mess with tobacco. The second time is, how are your kids, you don't want them hurt, do you?

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Now, sir, as a result of those threats, did you decide to cooperate with federal officials investigating the tobacco industry?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. Yes.


MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Final question, sir. I want to ask you if you agree with a statement that was in the Journal of the American Medical Association that you referred to earlier. You referred to being aware of it, and I'm just going to show you an excerpt from the document.

MR. BEZANSON: May we see a copy, please?

We object to the use of this document in these proceedings as it appears on the face of it to be attorney/client communication and, therefore, protected by the attorney/client privilege.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. I believe you have seen this document in the American Medical Association journal. It was also an exhibit to Dr. Kessler's testimony before Congress. Are you familiar with that testimony?

A. Yes, I am.

Q. And did you assist Dr. Kessler as a consultant in preparation for his testimony?

A. Yes, I did.

Q. And you recall seeing this Brown & Williamson document dated 1963?

A. Yes, I did.

Q. And this is a excerpt from it, from Mr. Addison Yeaman?

A. Correct.

MR. BEZANSON: Continuing objection.

Q. Will you read that into the record, sir?

MR. BEZANSON: Object.

A. "We are, then, in the business of selling nicotine, an addictive drug effective in the release of stress mechanisms."

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. Now, sir, did you learn anything as the vice president of research and development at Brown & Williamson, did you learn anything of a scientific nature that Brown & Williamson had in their possession that would dispute the remark their lawyer made that nicotine is an addictive substance?

MR. BEZANSON: Object to the form.

A. No.

MR. MOTLEY:

Q. In other words, what you learned was consistent with that statement, correct?

MR. BEZANSON: Repeat the objection.

A. From a scientific and from a daily conversation basis, continues to reinforce that statement.

MR. BEZANSON: Move to strike.

MR. MOTLEY: All right, sir. At your request, and I know you are tired, and I haven't heard any counsel object, we -- The doctor has advised me he is unavailable tomorrow. We will resume this deposition at whatever time we can either agree upon or some judge instructs us to resume it.

MR. BEZANSON: With full reservation of rights.

MR. MOTLEY: With full reservations of rights and lefts. And do you have anything you want to say, General Moore, on the record or, Dickie?

MR. COLINGO [Joe Colingo from Colingo, Williams, representing R.J. Reynolds]: I want to say one thing, if I may. Since there has been an order sealing this particular deposition, I would recommend at this point that only two copies, only two copies of this deposition be given out right now, Dickie, one to you as liaison for all of the plaintiffs, one to me as liaison for all of the defendants, that we keep a record of who, if any, we distribute this deposition to, that I will furnish you with a copy of my record as to who it is given to. You please furnish me with a copy of who you have given it to. And until such time as we get a court order saying either is privileged or can be released that you be responsible for that document not being distributed by the plaintiff, and I shall be responsible for it not being distributed or discussed by the defendants.

MR. MCDERMOTT [Bob McDermott Jones, Day, Reavis & Pogue representing R.J. Reynolds]: Before the witness leaves, you served a subpoena on him for request of documents. Some documents have been referred to. Before we leave, I'd like to know the status of the documents that your process directed this witness to bring with him.

MR. MOTLEY: We communicated with you about that, and I didn't bring out anything today. We sent you a letter and showed you what he gave us.

MR. SCRUGGS: I'll say this on the record. The witness has responded with -- or provided no documents today or prior to today that are responsive to the subpoena.

MR. COLINGO: Dickie, do you agree with what I'm saying relative to this deposition?

MR. SCRUGGS: Joe, all I can tell you right now -- and, I'm sorry, I didn't listen to everything you just said -- we are going to abide by the court order.

MR. COLINGO: I will be happy to repeat it for you.

I am recommending that the transcript and the video, that there at this point only be two copies made, one distributed to you as plaintiffs' liaison counsel, one distributed to me as defendants' liaison counsel, that you keep a record of who you distribute your copies to, that I keep a record of who I distribute my copies to and that we report that to the court in the eventuality that a breach of the court order does in effect come about.

I'm not by any stretch of the imagination trying to suggest that you not be allowed to distribute to whom you deem appropriate. I'm just saying I want someone responsible for keeping a record as to who on your side has them, and I'd like that to be you. And I will be responsible for who is going to get copies on our side. And I think that that way we'll have a record of every person that has had a copy of this distributed directly from both liaison counsel.

ATTORNEY GENERAL MIKE MOORE: One concern, maybe I can clear it up, when you say give a copy of, I'm going to get a copy of the deposition. You understand that. The one you give me may become two.

MR. COLINGO: No, no. That's not what I'm talking about. I'm saying at this particular point, let's have the court reporter furnish two copies of the video and the transcript, one to you and one to me. If we choose to order more copies -- I have to distribute it to everybody; you are going to distribute it. But if you will have a record of everybody that has received a copy through you, and I will have a copy of everybody that has received a copy through me. And then if there has been a violation of any court order, you will have who got yours, and I will have who got mine.

MR. SCRUGGS: We agree.

MR. BEZANSON: The deposition should also reflect that it is under seal.

MR. COLINGO: And this deposition is recessed right now.

MR. SCRUGGS: That's all, pursuant to Judge Myers' order.

(Off the record.)

MR. BEZANSON: On the record, I'd like to make certain that all of the recording technicians and stenographers, reporters and video operators understand that the order applies to them as well and that they all agree to be bound by its terms. Is this correct? All say yes.

MR. COLINGO: I don't have a problem with any of these people. I know them. They continue to do work for us.

(Deposition recessed at 4:30 p.m. )
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Re: The how and why of whistleblower smears

Postby admin » Mon Mar 28, 2016 7:00 am

Schoolcraft and Serpico: Smearing Prophets as Nuts
by Len Levitt
Veteran police reporter and author
07/12/2010

NOTICE: THIS WORK MAY BE PROTECTED BY COPYRIGHT

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For those quick to dismiss cop whistle-blower Adrian Schoolcraft, remember that nobody initially believed Frank Serpico.

Not even the Times, which broke his story of police corruption across its front page.

Before Serpico publicly exposed payoffs to his Bronx plainclothes unit 40 years ago, the police department had painted him as a malcontent, a nut, a weirdo, with long hair and hippie friends. That’s what agencies do to whistleblowers.

Before the Times ran Serpico’s story, they wanted confirmation from someone official -- someone they could trust. Only after Serpico appeared with his former partner, Inspector Paul Delise, who confirmed the outlines of his allegations, did the Times print his story.

Before it was over, the city had a full-blown corruption scandal. Public hearings, known as the Knapp Commission, revealed organized, systemic payoffs at every level of the NYPD.

Now, we have Brooklyn police officer Schoolcraft describing corruption of a different kind.

Schoolcraft secretly tape-recorded roll call meetings in the 81st precinct, where superiors, starting with its commanding officer, Deputy Inspector Steven Mauriello, discussed downgrading felonies to misdemeanors.

These allegations dovetail with other unofficial reports that such practices are organized and systemic in police precincts throughout the city.


In 2005, the presidents of the patrolmen’s and sergeant’s unions publicly revealed this downgrading. Other officers stated that precinct commanders and their aides dissuaded victims from filing complaints or urged them to change their accounts so that offenses could be reclassified as lesser crimes.

Earlier this year, two college professors -- one, a former NYPD captain -- announced that they had surveyed more than 100 retired police bosses who acknowledged that pressure to reduce crime had led supervisors and precinct commanders to manipulate crime statistics.

More recently, cops and victims from around the city told the Village Voice of similar disturbing reports about how the NYPD low-balled or hid crimes. The Voice, which had published transcripts of Schoolcraft’s tapes, reported that such downgrading had, in effect, allowed a rapist to commit six sex sexual assaults in Washington Heights because his spree wasn’t flagged as serious.

What’s been the NYPD reaction to all this?

When in 2005 the chairman of the Mayor’s Commission to Combat Police Corruption began an investigation and sought to obtain precinct records, Police Commissioner Ray Kelly refused to provide them. Mayor Michael Bloomberg remained silent. The chairman resigned.

Since then Kelly and his spokesman Paul Browne have maintained that the police department’s internal audits have found nothing inappropriate.

Their official denials that anything is amiss are reminiscent of the department’s attitude towards Serpico’s charges, just before he was shot in the face and nearly died, eight months before he became the Knapp Commission’s star witness.

Wounded by a drug dealer during a police raid, he charged the department had purposely failed to provide him with adequate back-up after his partner had called in sick the night before. Whether or not this was true, it woke up the city, alerting all New Yorkers to the impending police scandal.

Officials are now trying to ignore Schoolcraft. As it did to Serpico, the department has painted him as a malcontent, a nut, a weirdo. Like all whistleblowers, Serpico included, Schoolcraft and his overly protective father have proved difficult to deal with. They live upstate. They keep changing phone numbers, possibly because they can’t pay their bills. Their motives seem unclear (perhaps even to themselves) and they have blown through at least four sets of attorneys.

Last October, after Schoolcraft left his Brooklyn precinct an hour early, saying he was sick, the police, led by Brooklyn Deputy Chief Michael Marino, followed him home to his Queens apartment. They broke down his door, handcuffed him and rifled his files, apparently seeking his tape-recordings. Unbeknownst to them, Schoolcraft secretly recorded the encounter.

The police then transported him to Jamaica Hospital, where against his will he was admitted to the psych ward and held there for six days.

In admitting him, the hospital’s record, as reported in this column two weeks ago, described Schoolcraft as “coherent” and “relevant” and said “his memory and concentration is intact.”

Why, then, was he admitted? Hospital spokesman Ole Pedersen told the Voice: “We have to take the word of whoever is coming in with him, and make a decision based on what they tell us. If there is an issue, the issue is with the Police Department or whoever brought an individual in.”

Such is the power of Kelly and Bloomberg that no one -- not one politician, starting with City Council Public Safety Chairman Peter Vallone, nor one mainstream news organization, starting with the New York Times with its barrelful of city-side reporters — has pursued the circumstances of Schoolcraft’s hospital admission.

Not one politician nor one mainstream news organization has pursued what is an open secret within the police department: that the downgrading of crimes is not confined to the 81st precinct but is a city-wide scandal that has gone on for years.

Instead, the mainstream media reports each allegation separately, failing to take the obvious step of connecting the dots.


Corruption in narcotics law enforcement has grown in recent years to the point where high-ranking police officials acknowledge it to be the most serious problem facing the Department. In the course of its investigation, the Commission became familiar with each of the practices detailed by Chief Cawley, as well as many other corrupt patterns, including:

• Keeping money and/or narcotics confiscated at the time of an arrest or raid.
• Selling narcotics to addict-informants in exchange for stolen goods.
• Passing on confiscated drugs to police informants for sale to addicts.
• "Flaking," or planting narcotics on an arrested person in order to have evidence of a law violation.
• "Padding," or adding to the quantity of narcotics found on an arrested person in order to upgrade an arrest.
• Storing narcotics, needles and other drug paraphernalia in police lockers.
• Illegally tapping suspects' telephones to obtain incriminating evidence to be used either in making cases against the suspects, or to blackmail them.
• Purporting to guarantee freedom from police wiretaps for a monthly service charge.
• Accepting money or narcotics from suspected narcotics law violators as payment for the disclosure of official information.
• Accepting money for registering as police informants persons who were in fact giving no information and falsely attributing leads and arrests to them, so that their "cooperation" with the police may win them amnesty for prior misconduct.
• Financing heroin transactions.

In addition to these typical patterns, the Commission learned of numerous individual instances of narcotics-related corrupt conduct on the part of police officers, such as:

• Determining the purity and strength of unfamiliar drugs they had seized by giving small quantities to addict-informants to test on themselves.
• Introducing potential customers to narcotics pushers.
• Revealing the identity of a government informant to narcotics criminals.
• Kidnapping critical witnesses at the time of trial to prevent them from testifying.
• Providing armed protection for narcotics dealers.
• Offering to obtain "hit men" to kill potential witnesses.

-- The Knapp Commission Report on Police Corruption: Commission to Investigate Allegations of Police Corruption and the City's Anti-Corruption Procedures, by Whitman Knapp, Chairman


Their laziness or ineptitude is abetted by Kelly. The most powerful police commissioner in city history, he has made the department less transparent than at any time in recent decades, closing it to all outside scrutiny.

Still, Kelly senses danger. Ten days ago in the dead of night, he transferred Mauriello to Bronx Transit. The department called the transfer “routine.”

Let’s see if Deputy Chief Marino, who led the raid on Schoolcraft’s apartment and who has other unrelated issues, is next.

Perhaps Kelly recalls that Serpico’s allegations 40 years before began with a single corrupt Bronx plainclothes unit. The Times and the Knapp Commission found others -- all the way up to the police commissioner’s office.
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Re: The how and why of whistleblower smears

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The Nixon Administration and Watergate: Ellsberg Break-in
by History Commons
3/28/16

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May 1969: FBI Wiretaps Nixon Aides, Reporters at Kissinger’s Behest

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Henry Kissinger. [Source: Library of Congress]

Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, determined to prove to President Nixon that news stories about the secret Cambodian bombings are not being leaked to the press by liberals in the National Security Council offices, urges FBI director J. Edgar Hoover to wiretap several of Nixon’s top aides, as well as a selection of reporters. Kissinger will later deny making the request. [WERTH, 2006, PP. 169] In March 1973, W. Mark Felt, the deputy director of the FBI and Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward’s famous “Deep Throat” background source, will confirm the wiretappings, saying: “In 1969, the first targets of aggressive wiretapping were the reporters and those in the administration who were suspected of disloyalty. Then the emphasis was shifted to the radical political opposition during the [Vietnam] antiwar protests. When it got near election time [1972], it was only natural to tap the Democrats (see Late June-July 1971 and May 27-28, 1972). The arrests in the Watergate (see 2:30 a.m.June 17, 1972) sent everybody off the edge because the break-in could uncover the whole program.” [BERNSTEIN AND WOODWARD, 1974, PP. 271] Felt will tell Woodward that two of the reporters placed under electronic surveillance are Neil Sheehan and Hedrick Smith. Pentagon Papers leaker Daniel Ellsberg will leak the Defense Department documents to Sheehan (see March 1971). Eventually, future FBI director William Ruckelshaus will reveal that at least 17 wiretaps are ordered between 1969 and 1971. The logs of those wiretaps are stored in a safe in White House aide John Ehrlichman’s office. In all, 13 government officials and four reporters are monitored. [BERNSTEIN AND WOODWARD, 1974, PP. 313] The FBI will send Kissinger 37 letters reporting on the results of the surveillance between May 16, 1969 and May 11, 1970. When the surveillance is revealed to the Senate Watergate Committee, it will be shown that among those monitored are Nixon speechwriter and later New York Times columnist William Safire; Anthony Lake, a top Kissinger aide who will later resign over the secret bombings of Cambodia; and the military assistant to Secretary of Defense Melvin Laird, whom Kissinger regards as a political enemy. [WOODWARD, 2005, PP. 21-22]

Late June-July 1971: Nixon Authorizes ‘Plumbers,’ Orders Media Leaks to Smear Ellsberg

President Nixon authorizes the creation of a “special investigations unit,” later nicknamed the “Plumbers,” to root out and seal media leaks. The first target is Daniel Ellsberg, who leaked the Pentagon Papers to the press (see June 13, 1971); the team will burglarize the office of Ellsberg’s psychiatrist, Dr. Lewis Fielding, in hopes of securing information that the White House can use to smear Ellsberg’s character and undermine his credibility (see September 9, 1971). Nixon aide John Ehrlichman, who supervises the “Plumbers,” will later say that the Ellsberg burglary is “the seminal Watergate episode.” Author Barry Werth will later write, “[L]ike all original sins, it held the complete DNA of subsequent misdeeds.” During the upcoming court battle over the documents, Nixon tells his aide Charles Colson: “We’ve got a countergovernment here and we’ve got to fight it. I don’t give a damn how it’s done. Do whatever has to be done to stop those leaks.… I don’t want to be told why it can’t be done.” Whatever damaging information the “Plumbers” can find on Ellsberg will be itself leaked to the press, Nixon says. “Don’t worry about his trial [referring to Ellsberg’s arrest on conspiracy and espionage charges (see June 28, 1971) ]. Just get everything out. Try him in the press… leak it out.” [WERTH, 2006, PP. 84-87] As he is wont to do, Nixon refers to his own success in convicting suspected Communist spy Alger Hiss in 1950. “We won the Hiss case in the papers,” he says. “We did. I had to leak stuff all over the place. Because the Justice Department would not prosecute it.… It was won in the papers…. I leaked out the papers. I leaked everything.… I leaked out the testimony. I had Hiss convicted before he ever got to the grand jury.” [KUTLER, 1997, PP. 10; REEVES, 2001, PP. 337-338] In July 1973, FBI deputy director W. Mark Felt, the notorious “Deep Throat” (see May 31, 2005) will tell reporter Bob Woodward that Nixon created the Plumbers because the FBI would not do his bidding in regards to Ellsberg. Had the FBI agreed to investigate Ellsberg to the extent Nixon wanted, he would not have created the “Plumbers.” “The problem was that we [the FBI] wouldn’t burglarize” (see June 30-July 1, 1971), Felt will say. Ehrlichman will later testify, “Those fellows were going out as substitutes for the FBI.” [WOODWARD, 2005, PP. 107]

August 5, 1971: ’Plumbers’ Probe Ellsberg, Decide to Break into Psychiatrist’s Office

Nixon aide John Ehrlichman passes on the president’s recommendations to the heads of the “Plumbers,” Egil Krogh and David Young (see July 20, 1971), regarding “Pentagon Papers” leaker Daniel Ellsberg (see Late June-July 1971): “Tell Keogh he should do whatever he considers necessary to get to the bottom of this matter—to learn what Ellsberg’s motives and potential further harmful action might be.” Within days, Keogh and Young will give Ehrlichman a memo detailing the results of investigations into Ellsberg and a dozen of Ellsberg’s friends, family members, and colleagues. The memo also says that the CIA’s psychological profile of Ellsberg is “superficial.” Keogh and Young recommend a covert operation be undertaken to examine the medical files held by Ellsberg’s psychiatrist, Dr. Lewis Fielding (see September 9, 1971). Ehrlichman approves the idea, with the caveat, “If done under your assurance that it is not traceable.” They also suggest that MI5 (British intelligence) wiretaps on Soviet KGB personnel in England in 1952 and 1953, the years when Ellsberg attended Cambridge University, be examined for any mention of Ellsberg. Ehrlichman approves this also. [REEVES, 2001, PP. 352-353]

September 8, 1971: Ehrlichman Reports ‘Plumbers’ Operations to Nixon

Nixon aide John Ehrlichman gives a progress report on the activities of the “Plumbers” to the president. “Plumbers” head Egil Krogh has “been spending most of his time on the Ellsberg declassification,” Ehrlichman reports, referring to the probe into “Pentagon Papers” leaker Daniel Ellsberg (see Late June-July 1971). “We had one little operation. It’s been aborted out in Los Angeles, which, I think, is better that you don’t know about. But we’ve got some dirty tricks underway. It may pay off.” The “little” Los Angeles project—designated “Hunt/Liddy Special Project No.1” in Ehrlichman’s notes—is the burglary of the offices of Ellsberg’s psychiatrist, Dr. Lewis Fielding (see September 9, 1971). The “aborted” mission refers to Ehrlichman’s refusal to countenance a second break-in, this time of Fielding’s home. [REEVES, 2001, PP. 368-369]

September 9, 1971: ’Plumbers’ Burglarize Psychiatrist Office

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Eugenio Martinez. [Source: public domain]

President Nixon’s “Plumbers” unit, tasked to plug media leaks from administration officials and outsiders to the media, burglarizes the Los Angeles office of psychiatrist Lewis Fielding to find damaging information on Daniel Ellsberg, the former defense analyst and patient of Fielding who leaked the “Pentagon Papers” to the media. [GERALD R. FORD LIBRARY AND MUSEUM, 7/3/2007] Ellsberg is a former Marine captain in Vietnam and protege of Henry Kissinger who had a change of heart over the war; he then leaked a secret set of Pentagon documents to the New York Times detailing how the Kennedy and Johnson administrations had secretly escalated the war in Vietnam (see June 13, 1971).

Watergate Connection -- One of the burglars is Eugenio Martinez, who later is arrested as one of the five Watergate burglars (see 2:30 a.m.June 17, 1972). Martinez and two others—Felipe de Diego and the mission leader, E. Howard Hunt, who will supervise the Watergate burglary—are all old “CIA hands” heavily involved in anti-Castro activities. Martinez is still active in the CIA, as is Hunt, whom he often refers to by his old CIA code name of “Eduardo.” Another Watergate burglar, CIA agent Bernard Barker, is also involved in the Ellsberg burglary.

Martinez: Burglary a Near-Disaster -- Hunt tells Martinez and Diego that they are to burglarize the offices of a “traitor” who is spying for the Soviet Union, and that the mission was ordered by the White House, where Hunt is now an aide. Barker tells the Cubans, “We have to find some papers of a great traitor to the United States, who is a son of a b_tch .” The men will become a unit outside the normal law enforcement and intelligence channels, operating within but not part of the CIA, FBI, and “all the agencies,” Martinez will later recall. They buy photographic equipment at Sears, and Hunt and Diego use disguises—wigs, fake glasses, false identification, and voice-altering devices. “Barker recognized the name on Hunt’s false identification—Edward J. Hamilton—as the same cover name Eduardo had used during the Bay of Pigs,” Martinez will recall. The planning, Martinez will recall, is far looser and less meticulous than “anything I was used to in the [CIA].” A disguised Hunt and Diego, masquerading as delivery men, deliver the photographic equipment to the office; later that night, they and Martinez break in and rifle the office. Martinez will write that Hunt and de Diego looked “kind of queerish” in their disguises, with their “Peter Lorre-type glasses, and the funny Dita Beard wigs” (see February 22, 1972). Before the break-in, Barker, who does not enter, whispers to Martinez, “Hey, remember this name—Ellsberg.” Martinez does not recognize the name. [HARPER'S, 10/1974; REEVES, 2001, PP. 369]

Comedy of Errors -- The burglars wait for hours until the cleaning lady leaves for the night, and find the door to the building locked. At that point, a fifth man, “George,” whom Martinez learns is G. Gordon Liddy, another of the Watergate burglars also involved in the Ellsberg planning, appears and tells them to break in through a window. [HARPER'S, 10/1974] Three burglars—Bernard Barker, Felipe de Diego, and Eugenio Martinez—perform the actual break-in, while Hunt and Liddy act as lookouts. [REEVES, 2001, PP. 369] The burglary is quickly turning into a comedy of errors, Martinez will recall. “This was nothing new. It’s what the Company did in the Bay of Pigs when they gave us old ships, old planes, old weapons. They explained that if you were caught in one of those operations with commercial weapons that you could buy anywhere, you could be said to be on your own. They teach you that they are going to disavow you. The Company teaches you to accept those things as the efficient way to work. And we were grateful. Otherwise we wouldn’t have had any help at all. In this operation it seemed obvious—they didn’t want it to be traced back to the White House. Eduardo told us that if we were caught, we should say we were addicts looking for drugs.” Martinez finds nothing concerning Ellsberg in the office except for Fielding’s telephone book, which Martinez photographs. Before leaving, Martinez spills some pills from Fielding’s briefcase—“vitamin C, I think”—over the floor to make it seem as if the burglars had broken in looking for drugs. As they leave the office, Martinez spots a police car trailing them, but they are not stopped. “I thought to myself that the police car was protecting us. That is the feeling you have when you are doing operations for the government. You think that every step has been taken to protect you.”

Failure; Training for Bigger Mission? -- Martinez feels that the burglary is a failure, but Hunt insists that they celebrate anyway. Martinez tells Diego that the break-in must either be a training exercise for a more important mission to come, or it was a cover operation for something else. “I thought to myself that maybe these people already had the papers of Ellsberg. Maybe Dr. Fielding had given them out and for ethical reasons he needed to be covered. It seemed that these people already had what we were looking for because no one invites you to have champagne and is happy when you fail,” he will write. Martinez’s CIA supervisor is strangely uninterested in the incident. “I was certain then that the Company knew about his activities,” Martinez will write. “But once again my CO did not pursue the subject.” [HARPER'S, 10/1974] Hunt telephones Plumbers supervisor Egil Krogh at 4 a.m. to report that the burglary was a success but they found no files on Ellsberg. [REEVES, 2001, PP. 369]

Early January, 1973: Barker, Other Burglars Remaining Silent to Keep Ellsberg Burglary Secret

While awaiting trial, Watergate burglar James McCord (see June 19, 1972) tells his fellow burglars that he is going to get his own lawyer. “I am going to get F. Lee Bailey. He is a big attorney,” McCord tells Bernard Barker. McCord recommends that Barker and the other Cubans—Virgilio Gonzales, Eugenio Martinez, and Frank Sturgis—get their own lawyers, too. Barker meets with lawyer Henry Rothblatt, who assures Barker that he will represent all the Cubans for free. “He had [successfully] defended the Green Berets in their big case” (see September 29, 1969), Barker will write in 1974, and this case is, according to Rothblatt, very similar. Protected by the attorney-client relationship, Barker tells Rothblatt about both the Watergate and Ellsberg burglaries (see August 5, 1971). Barker will write, “So he knew we couldn’t use the truth as our defense in the Watergate case, because we could not reveal our recruitment for the Ellsberg case.” [HARPER'S, 10/1974]

March 21, 1973: White House Lawyer Dean: There Is ‘A Cancer on the Presidency’

White House counsel John Dean warns President Nixon of a “cancer on the presidency.” When this phrase enters the public dialogue, it is popularly misremembered as Dean warning Nixon about the ill effects of the Watergate conspiracy on the Nixon presidency. Instead, Dean is warning Nixon about the deleterious effects of the blackmail efforts being carried out against the White House by the convicted Watergate burglars (see June 20-21, 1972). In a conversation secretly taped by Nixon, Dean says, “We have a cancer within, close to the Presidency, that is growing. Basically it is because we are being blackmailed.” [REEVES, 2001, PP. 577-578; GERALD R. FORD LIBRARY AND MUSEUM, 7/3/2007; SPARTACUS SCHOOLNET, 8/2007]

Cancer Should 'Be Removed Immediately' -- In later testimony to the Senate Watergate Investigative Committee (see June 25-29, 1973), Dean states his words somewhat differently: “I began by telling the president that there was a cancer growing on the presidency and that if the cancer was not removed, that the president himself would be killed by it. I also told him that it was important that this cancer be removed immediately because it was growing more deadly every day.” Dean then tells Nixon virtually the entire story of the Watergate conspiracy, noting his discussions with other conspirators about the prospective wiretapping of the Democrats—particularly Watergate burglar G. Gordon Liddy and campaign officials John Mitchell and Jeb Magruder—and tells Nixon that he had reported the plans to Nixon’s top aide, H. R. Haldeman. He had participated in paying off the burglars to remain silent, and had coached Magruder to perjure himself before the Watergat grand jury (see April 14-18, 1973). Dean will testify: “I concluded by saying that it is going to take continued perjury and continued support of these individuals to perpetuate the cover-up and that I did not believe that it was possible to so continue it. Rather, all those involved must stand up and account for themselves and the president himself must get out in front.” But, Dean will testify, Nixon refuses to countenance Dean’s advice, and instead sets up a meeting with Dean, Haldeman, Mitchell, and his other top aide, John Ehrlichman. Nixon hopes that Mitchell will agree to take the blame for the Watergate wiretapping, and thusly quell the public uproar (Mitchell will refuse). Nixon, Haldeman, Ehrlichman, and Dean meet a second time that afternoon, a meeting which Dean will later describe as another “tremendous disappointment.” He will testify, “It was quite clear that the cover-up as far as the White House was concerned was going to continue.” He will testify that he believes both Haldeman and Ehrlichman, and himself, are indictable for obstruction of justice, and that “it was time that everybody start thinking about telling the truth.” However, both aides “were very unhappy with my comments.” [TIME, 7/9/1973] Dean tells Nixon that to save his presidency, he and his closest aides Haldeman and Ehrlichman are going to have to testify and most likely go to jail. [BERNSTEIN AND WOODWARD, 1974, PP. 304]

Blackmail Payoffs -- Between the blackmail and the almost-certainty that White House officials are going to start perjuring themselves, Dean concludes that the problem is critical. Convicted burglar E. Howard Hunt wants another $72,000 for what he is calling personal expenses and $50,000 more for attorneys’ fees. Hunt directly threatened aides John Ehrlichman and Egil Krogh (see July 20, 1971) with his testimony, saying that, Dean reports, “I have done enough seamy things for he and Krogh that they’ll never survive it.” Hunt is threatening to reveal the story behind the Ellsberg break-in (see September 9, 1971) and, in Dean’s words, “other things. I don’t know the full extent of it.” Nixon asks, “How much money do you need?” Dean replies, “I would say these people are going to cost a million dollars over the next two years.” Nixon muses, “You could get a million dollars. You could get it in cash. I know where it could be gotten. I mean it’s not easy but it could be done.” The money can be raised, Nixon says, but the idea of any presidential pardons for anyone is out. Nixon learns from his secretary, Rose Mary Woods, that their secret campaign fund still has over $100,000. That evening, Hunt is given $75,000 in cash. [REEVES, 2001, PP. 577-578; GERALD R. FORD LIBRARY AND MUSEUM, 7/3/2007; SPARTACUS SCHOOLNET, 8/2007] Hunt will eventually receive $120,000, almost the exact amount he demands. [RESTON, 2007, PP. 35]

May 11, 1973: All Charges Against Pentagon Papers Leaker Dropped; Judge Blasts Governmental Misconduct

US District Court Judge W. M. Byrne, Jr dismisses all charges against “Pentagon Papers” leaker Daniel Ellsberg (see March 1971) and Ellsberg’s co-defendant, Anthony Russo. [NEW YORK TIMES, 5/11/1973] Byrne was shocked to learn that Watergate burglars G. Gordon Liddy and E. Howard Hunt had supervised the burglary of the office of Ellsberg’s psychiatrist (see September 9, 1971). The source of the information was probably White House counsel John Dean. [BERNSTEIN AND WOODWARD, 1974, PP. 307] Initially, government prosecutors had insisted that Ellsberg had never been wiretapped, but FBI director William Ruckelshaus found that Ellsberg had indeed been recorded, during a conversation with former Kissinger aide Morton Halperin, who had been wiretapped (see June 19, 1972). Ruckelshaus tells the court that Halperin had been monitored for 21 months. It is the first public acknowledgement that the Nixon administration had used wiretaps against its political enemies (see June 27, 1973). Additionally, the government had broken the law when it failed to disclose the wiretap to Ellsberg’s defense lawyers. [BERNSTEIN AND WOODWARD, 1974, PP. 313] Byrne cites “improper government conduct shielded so long from public view” and an array of governmental misconduct in dismissing the charges. “The conduct of the government has placed the case in such a posture that it precludes the fair, dispassionate resolution of these issues by a jury,” Byrne rules. Ellsberg and Russo were charged with theft, conspiracy, and fraud in the case. The government’s actions in attempting to prosecute Ellsberg and Russo “offended a sense of justice,” he says. One of the governmental actions that Byrne decries was the wiretapping of Ellsberg’s telephone conversations by the FBI in 1969 and 1970, and the subsequent destruction of the tapes and surveillance logs of those conversations. Byrne is also disturbed by the burglary of the offices of Ellsberg’s psychiatrist by government agents (see June 30-July 1, 1971 and September 9, 1971), and the apparent involvement of the FBI and the CIA in the prosecution of the case at the “request of the White House.” Referring to the burglary, Byrne says, “We may have been given only a glimpse of what this special unit did.” After the trial, Ellsberg is asked if he would disclose the Pentagon documents again, and he replies, “I would do it tomorrow, if I could do it.” [NEW YORK TIMES, 5/11/1973]

June 3, 1973: Washington Post Says Dean Discussed Cover-Up with Nixon 35 Times, Approved of Payoffs to Watergate Conspirators

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Washington Post headline from Dean story. [Source: Washington Post]

Former White House counsel John Dean has told Watergate investigators that he discussed the Watergate cover-up with President Nixon at least 35 times [GERALD R. FORD LIBRARY AND MUSEUM, 7/3/2007] between January and April of 1973, according to sources quoted by the Washington Post. Dean plans on testifying to his assertions in the Senate Watergate hearings (see May 17-18, 1973), whether or not he is granted immunity from prosecution. He will also allege that Nixon himself is deeply involved with the Watergate cover-up. Nixon had prior knowledge of payments used to buy the silence of various Watergate conspirators, and knew of offers of executive clemency for the conspirators issued in his name. Dean has little solid evidence besides his own personal knowledge of events inside the White House.

Haldeman, Ehrlichman, Nixon Central Figures in Cover-Up -- Dean will testify that two of Nixon’s closest aides, H. R. Haldeman and John Ehrlichman (see April 30, 1973), were also present at many of the meetings where the cover-up was discussed in Nixon’s presence. The White House, and Haldeman and Ehrlichman, have tried to portray Dean as the central figure in the Watergate conspiracy, and the Justice Department says there is ample evidence to indict Dean for a number of crimes related to the cover-up. Dean and his supporters paint Dean as a White House loyalist who merely did what he was told, until he began agonizing over the effect Watergate was having on Nixon. Dean alleges that Nixon asked him how much the seven Watergate defendants (see June 17, 1972) would have to be paid to ensure their silence, aside from the $460,000 already paid out; when Dean replied that the cost would be around $1 million, Nixon allegedly replied that such a payoff would be no problem. Dean has told investigators that later Nixon insisted he had been merely “joking” about the payoff. Dean says by that time—March 26—Nixon knew that Dean would be cooperating with the Watergate investigation, and that he believes Nixon was trying to retract the statement for his own legal well-being.

Pressured to Confess -- Dean has also testified that Nixon tried to force him to sign a letter of resignation that would have amounted to a confession that Dean had directed the Watergate cover-up without the knowledge of Nixon, Haldeman, or Ehrlichman. When Dean refused to sign, he says, Nixon warned him “in the strongest terms” never to reveal the Nixon administration’s covert activities and plans. Dean also says that Nixon personally directed the White House’s efforts to counterattack the press over Watergate (see October 16-November, 1972). Until January 1, Dean has told investigators, he usually reported to Haldeman and Ehrlichman regarding his Watergate-related activities, but after that date Nixon began taking more of an active role in dealing with Dean, and gave Dean direct orders on handling the cover-up.

Reliable Witness -- Dean has so far met eight times with the Watergate prosecutors, and twice with the chief legal counsel of the Senate Watergate committee, Samuel Dash. Dash and the prosecutors find Dean a compelling and believable witness. “[E]verything we have gotten from Dean that we were able to check out has turned out to be accurate,” says one Justice Department source. Dean says he tried without success to obtain records that would support his allegations in his final days in the White House, and believes that many of those records may have been destroyed by now. Dean did manage to remove some secret documents before his firing, documents that prompted Nixon to recently admit to “covert activities” surrounding Watergate. Dean’s information has already led to the revelation of the burglary of the office of Pentagon Papers leaker Daniel Ellsberg (see September 9, 1971), and to the resignation of FBI director L. Patrick Gray after Gray was found to have destroyed evidence taken from the safe of Watergate burglar E. Howard Hunt (see June 28, 1972).[WASHINGTON POST, 6/3/1973]

June 8-9, 1973: Colson Planned to Firebomb Brookings Institution, Post Reports

Washington Post reporter Carl Bernstein learns of White House aide Charles Colson’s plan to burglarize the Brookings Institution (see June 30-July 1, 1971 and June 1974), and, alarmingly, of Colson’s plans to actually firebomb the building. An associate of former White House counsel John Dean tells Bernstein that Colson did not want to just burglarize the Institute: “Chuck Colson wanted to rub two sticks together.”

Urgent Trip to See Nixon -- Colson could not have been serious, Bernstein says, but the associate replies: “Serious enough for [White House aide] John Caulfield to run out of Colson’s office in a panic. He came straight to John Dean, saying he didn’t ever want to talk to that man Colson again because he was crazy. And that John better do something before it was too late. John caught the first courier flight out to San Clemente [President Nixon’s home in California] to see [then-White House aide John] Ehrlichman. That’s how serious it was.” Ehrlichman indeed shut the operation down before it could start, but the associate implies Ehrlichman’s decision may have been based more on the fact that Dean knew about it than over any shock or outrage over the firebombing plan.

Reasoning behind Attack -- Colson wanted to firebomb Brookings because former Kissinger aide Morton Halperin, a Brookings fellow, may have had classified State Department documents at the Institute that the White House wanted back. A fire at the Institute would cover up a burglary of Halperin’s office.

Confirmation from Associate -- Bernstein confirms the story from an associate of Caulfield’s, who clarifies: “Not a fire, a firebombing. That was what Colson thought would do the trick. Caulfield said, ‘This has gone too far’ and [that] he didn’t ever want anything to do with Colson again in his life.” Both Dean and Caulfield told FBI investigators about the plan, Caulfield’s associate says.

Woodward Calls Colson -- When Bernstein’s colleague Bob Woodward calls Colson for a comment on the story, Colson jokes: “There’s no question about that. There is one mistake. It was not the Brookings, but the Washington Post. I told them to hire a wrecking crane and go over and knock down the building and Newsweek also.… I wanted the Washington Post destroyed.” When Woodward tells him the newspaper is printing the story, Colson retorts: “Explicitly, it is bullsh_t. I absolutely made no such statement or suggestion. It is ludicrous.… [T]his one has gone too far.” Colson calls back and says he may have made such a suggestion, but he was not serious. The Post prints the story. [BERNSTEIN AND WOODWARD, 1974, PP. 324-325]

Confirmation by Dean -- In 2006, Dean will write that when he “learned of [Colson’s] insane plan, I flew to California… to plead my case to John Ehrlichman, a titular superior to both Colson and myself. By pointing out, with some outrage, that if anyone died it would involve a capital crime that might be traced back to the White House, I was able to shut down Colson’s scheme.”[DEAN, 2006, PP. XXIII]

June 13, 1973: Investigators Find Memo Tying Ehrlichman to Ellsberg Burglary

Watergate investigators find a memo addressed to John Ehrlichman detailing plans to burglarize the office of Daniel Ellsberg’s psychiatrist (see September 9, 1971). The one-page memo was sent to Ehrlichman by former White House aides David Young and Egil “Bud” Krogh, and was dated before the September 3, 1971 burglary. The memo was given to investigators by Young, who has been granted immunity from prosecution in return for his cooperation. Young, says Justice Department sources, will testify that Ehrlichman saw the memo and approved the burglary operation. Ehrlichman, through his attorney, denies any advance knowledge of the burglary. Young and Krogh directed the day-to-day operations of the so-called “Plumbers,” a group of White House and Nixon campaign operatives charged with stopping media leaks. Krogh has testified in an affidavit that he was given “general authorization to engage in covert activity” to obtain information on Ellsberg by Ehrlichman. Krogh won Senate confirmation as an undersecretary in the Department of Transportation, but has since resigned his post. Young was a member of the National Security Council and a former appointments secretary to National Security Adviser Henry Kissinger; he resigned in April. [WASHINGTON POST, 6/13/1973]

July 24, 1973: Former Nixon Aide John Ehrlichman Testifies before Senate

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John Ehrlichman testifies before the Senate Watergate Committee.[Source: Associated Press]

Former senior White House aide John Ehrlichman testifies before the Senate Watergate Committee. [CNN, 2/15/1999] He disputes previous testimony by former White House counsel John Dean (see June 3, 1973), and defends both the Ellsberg break-in (see September 9, 1971) and President Nixon’s overall conduct. [FACTS ON FILE, 8/28/2006]

March 7, 1974: Nixon Aides Charged with Ellsberg Break-In

Former White House aides John Ehrlichman, Charles Colson, and G. Gordon Liddy, and three Cuban-Americans, including two of the convicted Watergate burglars (see January 8-11, 1973), Bernard Barker and Eugenio Martinez, are charged with planning and executing the burglary of the offices of Dr. Lewis Fielding, Pentagon Papers leaker Daniel Ellsberg’s psychiatrist (see September 9, 1971). Colson will quickly reach a plea-bargain agreement, promise to cooperate with the prosecution, plead guilty to one count of obstruction of justice, and serve approximately seven months in prison. [BERNSTEIN AND WOODWARD, 1974, PP. 335; BILLY GRAHAM CENTER, 12/8/2004] He will also be disbarred. In the guilty plea agreement, Colson admits to having devised “a scheme to obtain derogatory information about Daniel Ellsberg,” who himself was facing criminal charges relating to the Pentagon Papers leak. Colson wanted to smear Ellsberg’s reputation in the media, in essence having Ellsberg “tried in the newspapers” even though this would have an “adverse effect on his right to a fair trial.” Colson also admits to having written a “scurrilous and libelous memorandum” about one of Ellsberg’s attorneys. He does not admit to actually taking part in the planning of the Fielding burglary. [TIME, 6/17/1974] In 2006, White House counsel John Dean will write that Colson’s promise of cooperation is virtually worthless: “[I]n the end he proved to be utterly useless as a government witness, since the government could not vouch for his honesty.” [DEAN, 2006, PP. XXIII]

March 23, 1974: Liddy Convicted in Ellsberg Break-in

G. Gordon Liddy, one of the “Plumbers,” is convicted of an array of crimes related to the Ellsberg break-in (see September 9, 1971), and is sentenced from six to twenty years in prison. He faces concurrent charges of violating the civil rights of Ellsberg’s psychiatrist, Dr. Lewis Fielding (see March 7, 1974). [O.T. JACOBSON, 7/5/1974 ]

June 1974: Charles Colson Sentenced after Pleading Guilty to Watergate Crimes; Testifies about Nixon Involvement

Former Nixon White House aide Charles Colson, later described by reporter David Plotz as “Richard Nixon’s hard man, the ‘evil genius’ of an evil administration,” is sentenced to jail after pleading guilty (see March 7, 1974) to taking part in the plan to break into Daniel Ellsberg’s psychiatrist’s office (see September 9, 1971) and interfering with Ellsberg’s trial (see June 28, 1971). Colson also, according to Watergate historian Stanley Kutler, tried to hire Teamster thugs to beat up antiwar demonstrators, and plotted to either raid or firebomb the Brookings Institution (see June 8-9, 1973). Colson will serve seven months in jail (see September 3, 1974). [SLATE, 3/10/2000] Colson tells the court: “I shall be cooperating with the prosecutor, but that is not to say that the prosecutor has bargained for my testimony, that there is any quid pro quo: there was not. I reached my own conclusion that I have a duty to tell everything I know about these important issues, and a major reason for my plea was to free me to do so.” Colson’s testimony against Richard Nixon is damning, as he tells the court Nixon had “on numerous occasions urged me to disseminate damaging information about Daniel Ellsberg.” Vice President Ford defends Nixon, saying, “There’s a big difference between telling Chuck Colson to smear Ellsberg and ordering—or allegedly ordering—a break-in.” Colson will later become a born-again Christian evangelist, and found an influential prison ministry. [SLATE, 3/10/2000; WERTH, 2006, PP. 273-274]

July 5, 1974: Justice Department Issues Mixed Report on FBI Investigation of Watergate

The Justice Department’s Office of Planning and Evaluation (OPE) submits a report on the role and actions of the FBI in the Watergate investigations. The report finds that, even with the attempts of former Attorneys General John Mitchell and Richard Kleindienst, White House aides John Dean and Jeb Magruder, and others to “mislead and thwart the Bureau’s legitimate line of inquiry,” and the “contrived covers” used to direct attention away from the White House, the FBI investigation was “the ultimate key to the solution of not only the Watergate break-in (see 2:30 a.m.June 17, 1972) but the cover itself.” The report continues: “There can be no question that the actions of former Attorneys General Mitchell and Kleindienst served to thwart and/or impede the Bureau’s investigative effort. The actions of John W. Dean at the White House and Jeb S. Magruder at the Committee to Re-elect the President were purposefully designed to mislead and thwart the Bureau’s legitimate line of inquiry. At every stage of the investigation there were contrived covers placed in order to mislead the investigators.” The OPE notes the following problems in the investigation, and provides explanations of some:

Providing information concerning ongoing investigations to the White House, and allowing Dean to actually sit in on interviews of White House personnel (see June 22, 1972).

Failing to interview key members of CREEP, the Nixon re-election campaign organization, as well as allowing CREEP attorneys to sit in on interviews of CREEP employees and allowing those attorneys access to FBI investigative materials. The report says that the investigation initially focused on James McCord and E. Howard Hunt, and interviewed CREEP officials tied directly to them. The net was widened later on. However, the report acknowledges that many CREEP employees undoubtedly lied to FBI investigators, “most notably John Mitchell, Jeb Magruder, Bart Porter, Sally Harmony, and Maurice Stans.” Porter and Magruder in particular “lied most convincingly.” Another CREEP employee, Robert Reisner (Magruder’s assistant), was not interviewed because Reisner successfully hid from FBI investigators. The FBI believes it was Reisner who cleaned out the “Operation Gemstone” files from Magruder’s office (see January 29, 1972 and September 29, 1972). Numerous other financial and other files were also destroyed after being requested by the FBI, most notably Alfred Baldwin’s surveillance tapes and logs from the Democratic offices in the Watergate (see May 29, 1972). Many of these files were destroyed by G. Gordon Liddy. “It is apparent that most [CREEP] people in the summer of 1972 were quite willing to lie and/or tell us considerably less than the full truth,” the report notes.

An untenable delay in searching and securing Watergate burglar E. Howard Hunt’s desk in the White House, putting the contents of that desk at risk of being removed, and the “[a]lleged activities by former Acting Director [L. Patrick] Gray to limit, contain, or obstruct FBI investigation of Watergate” (see June 22, 1972). Gray is known to have destroyed materials from Hunt’s desk given to him by Dean, and is known to have extensively interfered with the FBI’s investigation (see June 28-29, 1972 and Late December 1972). The report notes that while it cannot find specific evidence that Gray broke any laws in his attempts to impede the FBI’s investigation into the Watergate conspiracy, it is clear that Gray cooperated with the White House, specifically through Dean, to ensure that the White House was always aware of what avenues of investigation were being pursued. The OPE says that Gray’s destruction of files from Hunt’s safe did not necessarily impede the FBI’s investigation, because it has no way of knowing what was in those files. The report says that it is unfortunate that “many people make no distinction between the FBI’s actions and Mr. Gray’s actions.”

Failure to interview key individuals with knowledge of the suspicious monies found in the burglars’ bank accounts.

Failing to secure and execute search warrants for the burglars’ homes, automobiles, and offices. The OPE says that many of those issuing this criticism “should know better,” and claims that the FBI agents involved did their level best to obtain search warrants within the bounds of the law. The report notes that after the burglary, the assistant district attorney prosecuting the case, Earl Silbert, did not believe there was probable cause to search burglar James McCord’s home or office until after July 10, 1972, when Baldwin told the FBI that he had taken surveillance equipment to McCord’s home (see June 17, 1972). Even then, Silbert decided that because of the amount of time—23 days—that had expired, a search warrant would have been pointless.

Failing to identify and interview a number of people listed in the burglars’ address books. The OPE report notes that the decision to interview far less than half of the names in the books was made by FBI agents in the Miami field office, and due to the “fast moving extensive investigation which was then being conducted,” the decision to only track down a selected few from the books was right and proper. The report notes that subsequent interviews by reporters of some of the people in the address books elicited no new information. The report also notes that Gray refused to countenance interviews of the remaining subjects in the address book while the trial of the seven burglars (see January 8-11, 1973) was underway.

Failing to find and remove a surveillance device from the Democratic National Committee headquarters (see September 13, 1972). The OPE calls this failure “inexplicable.”

Failure to thoroughly investigate CREEP agent Donald Segretti (see June 27, 1971, and Beyond) and other CREEP operatives. The OPE finds that because Segretti was initially uncooperative with FBI investigators, and because an “extensive investigation” turned up nothing to connect Segretti with the Watergate conspiracy, the agents chose not to continue looking into Segretti’s actions. Only after press reports named Segretti as part of a massive, White House-directed attempt to subvert the elections process (see October 7, 1972) did the FBI discuss reopening its investigation into Segretti. After reviewing its information, the FBI decided again not to bother with Segretti. The OPE finds that the decision was valid, because Segretti had not apparently broken any federal laws, and the FBI does not conduct violations of election laws unless specifically requested to do so by the Justice Department. The report also says that politics were a concern: by opening a large, extensive investigation into the Nixon campaign’s “dirty tricks,” that investigation might have impacted the upcoming presidential elections.

Media leaks from within the FBI concerning key details about the investigation (see May 31, 2005). The report finds no evidence to pin the blame for the leaks on any particular individual. The report notes that New York Times reporter John Crewdson seemed to have unwarranted access to FBI documents and files, but says it has turned that matter over to another agency inside the bureau.

Failing to interview, or adequately interview, key White House officials such as H. R. Haldeman, Charles Colson, Dwight Chapin, and others. The report justifies the decision not to interview Haldeman because the FBI had no information that Haldeman had any knowledge of, or involvement in, the burglary itself.

“Alleged attempt on part of Department of Justice officials to limit, contain, or obstruct FBI investigation.” The report is particularly critical of Kleindienst’s concealment of his contact with Liddy about the burglary (see June 17, 1972).

“Alleged attempt by CIA officials to interfere, contain, or impede FBI Watergate investigation.” The report notes that during the Senate Watergate Committee hearings, Republican co-chairman Howard Baker (R-TN) tried repeatedly to assert that the CIA was behind the burglary. The report calls Baker’s theory “intriguing” but says no evidence of CIA involvement on any operational level was ever found. The report notes that there is still no explanation for the discussions regarding the CIA paying the burglars (see June 26-29, 1972), or the CIA’s involvement with Hunt before the burglary—loaning him cameras, providing him with materials for a disguise, and helping Hunt get film from the first burglary developed. According to the report, Gray stopped the FBI from pursuing these leads. The FBI report says that the CIA involvement apparently had nothing to do with the Watergate burglary, but was more in support of Hunt’s activities with the Ellsberg break-in (see September 9, 1971).

“Alleged activities on part of White House officials to limit, contain, or obstruct FBI Watergate investigation (Dean, Haldeman, Ehrlichman, Colson, et cetera).” The report notes, “There is absolutely no question but that the president’s most senior associates at the White House conspired with great success for nine months to obstruct our investigation.” The report says it was “common knowledge” throughout the investigation that the White House was paying only “lip service” to investigators’ requests for honest, complete answers; the report cites Dean as a specific offender. [O.T. JACOBSON, 7/5/1974 ]

March 6, 1978: Ehrlichman Says Haldeman Book Riddled with ‘Factual Errors which Impeach Its Substance’

Former Nixon White House aide John Ehrlichman reviews his former colleague H. R. Haldeman’s new book about Watergate, The Ends of Power (see February 1978). Ehrlichman is dismissive of the book, calling it “full of… dramatic hyperbole, overstatement and stereotype[s]…” Ehrlichman says some passages in the book are “full of poison [and] factual errors which impeach its substance.” He writes: “Four or five times the reader is told that Bob Haldeman is a direct, unvarnished, no-nonsense b_stard who always tells it like it is. That is the Haldeman I remember. But time after time, the accounts of Watergate events in his book are couched in the vague terms of the diplomat who is walking on eggs.” Ehrlichman writes of his surprise to learn that Nixon probably ordered the burglary of “Pentagon Papers” leaker Daniel Ellsberg’s psychiatrist’s office (see September 9, 1971), though he notes that Nixon “instantly voiced his approval of it” when Ehrlichman told him of the impending operation (see September 8, 1971). Ehrlichman accuses Haldeman of misquoting him, and sometimes making up statements supposedly said by Ehrlichman out of whole cloth. Ehrlichman concludes: “With all its factual inaccuracies, the book does give valid and important insights to anyone interested in the Nixon mystery. Unfortunately, these revelations are unduly restrained and limited in scope. Bob Haldeman was in a unique position to write a truly valuable book about Richard Nixon. I hope that The Ends of Power is not his last word. [TIME, 3/6/1978] A Time magazine article calls it “a second-rate book.” [TIME, 3/6/1978]
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Re: The how and why of whistleblower smears

Postby admin » Mon Mar 28, 2016 7:18 am

Russell Tice
by History Commons
3/28/16

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Russell Tice was a participant or observer in the following events:

Late 2002-Early 2003: AT&T Constructs Secret Surveillance Facility in Main Operations Center

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An aerial view of the AT&T Easylink Service building in Bridgeton, Missouri, where the NSA allegedly has secret facilities. [Source: USGS via Microsoft]

On behalf of the National Security Agency (NSA), AT&T constructs a secret, highly secured room in its network operations center in Bridgeton, Missouri, used to conduct secret government wiretapping operations. This is a larger and more elaborate “data mining” center than the one AT&T has constructed in San Francisco (see January 2003). Salon’s Kim Zetter will later write that the Bridgeton facility “had the earmarks of a National Security Agency operation,” including a sophisticated “mantrap” entrance using retinal and fingerprint scanners. Sometime in early 2003, AT&T technician Mark Klein (see July 7, 2009) discusses the Bridgeton facility with a senior AT&T manager, whom he will only identify as “Morgan.” The manager tells Klein that he considers the Bridgeton facility “creepy,” very secretive and with access restricted to only a few personnel. Morgan tells Klein that the secure room at Bridgeton features a logo on the door, which Klein will describe as “the eye-on-the-pyramid logo which is on the back of the dollar bill—and that got my attention because I knew that was for awhile the logo of the Total Awareness Program” (TIA-see Mid-January 2002, March 2002 and November 9, 2002). Klein notes that the logo “became such a laughingstock that they [the US government] withdrew it.” However, neither Klein nor Morgan find the NSA secure room at Bridgeton amusing. In June 2006, two AT&T workers will tell Zetter that the 100 or so employees who work in the room are “monitoring network traffic” for “a government agency,” later determined to be the NSA. Only government officials or AT&T employees with top-secret security clearance are admitted to the room, which is secured with a biometric “mantrap” or highly sophisticated double door, secured with retinal and fingerprint scanners. The few AT&T employees allowed into the room have undergone exhaustive security clearance procedures. “It was very hush-hush,” one of the AT&T workers will recall. “We were told there was going to be some government personnel working in that room. We were told: ‘Do not try to speak to them. Do not hamper their work. Do not impede anything that they’re doing.’” (Neither of Zetter’s sources is Klein, who by the time Zetter’s article is published in 2006, will have made his concerns about the NSA and AT&T public.) The Bridgeton facility is the central “command center” for AT&T’s management of all routers and circuits carrying domestic and international Internet traffic. Hence, it is the ideal location for conducting surveillance or collecting data. AT&T controls about a third of all bandwidth carrying Internet traffic to and from homes and businesses throughout the US. The two employees, who both will leave AT&T to work with other telecommunications firms, will say they cannot be sure what kinds of activities actually take place within the secret room. The allegations follow those made by Klein, who after his retirement (see May 2004) will submit an affidavit stating his knowledge of other, similar facilities in San Francisco and other West Coast switching centers, whose construction and operations were overseen by the NSA (see January 16, 2004 and January 2003); the two AT&T employees say that the orders for the San Francisco facility came from Bridgeton. NSA expert Matthew Aid will say of the Bridgeton facility, “I’m not a betting man, but if I had to plunk $100 down, I’d say it’s safe that it’s NSA.” Aid will say the Bridgeton facility is most likely part of “what is obviously a much larger operation, or series of interrelated operations” combining foreign intelligence gathering with domestic eavesdropping and data collection. Former high-level NSA intelligence officer Russell Tice will say bluntly: “You’re talking about a backbone for computer communications, and that’s NSA.… Whatever is happening there with the security you’re talking about is a whole lot more closely held than what’s going on with the Klein case.” The kind of vetting that the Bridgeton AT&T employees underwent points to the NSA, both Aid and Tice will say; one of the two AT&T employees who will reveal the existence of the Bridgeton facility will add, “Although they work for AT&T, they’re actually doing a job for the government.” Aid will add that, while it is possible that the Bridgeton facility is actually a center for legal FBI operations, it is unlikely due to the stringent security safeguards in place: “The FBI, which is probably the least technical agency in the US government, doesn’t use mantraps. But virtually every area of the NSA’s buildings that contain sensitive operations require you to go through a mantrap with retinal and fingerprint scanners. All of the sensitive offices in NSA buildings have them.” The American Civil Liberties Union’s Jameel Jaffer will add that when the FBI wants information from a telecom such as AT&T, it would merely show up at the firm with a warrant and have a wiretap placed. And both the NSA and FBI can legally, with warrants, tap into communications data using existing technological infrastructure, without the need for such sophisticated surveillance and data-mining facilities as the ones in Bridgeton and San Francisco. Both AT&T and the NSA will refuse to comment on the facilities in Bridgeton, citing national security concerns. [SALON, 6/21/2006; KLEIN, 2009, PP. 28-30]

January 10, 2006: Whistleblower Says NSA Spied Illegally on American Citizens

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Russell Tice. [Source: ABC News]

Former National Security Agency (NSA) official Russell Tice says that many of the wiretapping operations he once helped run were illegal. “I specialized in what’s called special access programs,” Tice tells ABC News. “We called them ‘black world’ programs and operations.” Tice is ready to testify before Congress about what he calls the illegal wrongdoings that are part of the Defense Department and the NSA’s wiretapping programs enacted after the 9/11 attacks. Many of these programs were targeted at innocent US citizens. “The mentality was we need to get these guys, and we’re going to do whatever it takes to get them,” he says. The technology used to track and sort through every domestic and international telephone center is impressive. “If you picked the word ‘jihad’ out of a conversation, the technology exists that you focus in on that conversation, and you pull it out of the system for processing.” Intelligence analysts use the information to develop graphs that resemble spiderwebs linking one suspect’s phone number to hundreds or even thousands more. While the president has admitted giving orders that allowed the NSA to eavesdrop on a small number of Americans without warrants, Tice says says the number of Americans subject to eavesdropping by the NSA could be in the millions if the full range of secret NSA programs is used. “That would mean for most Americans that if they conducted, or you know, placed an overseas communication, more than likely they were sucked into that vacuum.” Tice has been subjected to what appears to be bureaucratic punishment for his willingness to blow the whistle on the nation’s warrantless wiretapping programs; last year the NSA revoked his security clearance based on what it calls "psychological concerns," and later fired him. Tice says that is the way the NSA often deals with employees it considers troublemakers and whistleblowers (see January 25-26, 2006). [ABC NEWS, 1/10/2006; ABC, 1/10/2006]

January 25-26, 2006: NSA Allegedly Uses False Psychological Characterizations to Curb Whistleblowers

Current and former National Security Agency (NSA) employees say that the agency often retaliates against whistleblowers by labeling them “delusional,” “paranoid,” or “psychotic.” They say such labeling protects powerful superiors who might be incriminated by potentially criminal evidence provided by such whistleblowers, and helps to keep employees in line through fear and intimidation. One NSA whistleblower, former intelligence analyst Russell Tice, is currently the victim of such agency allegations. Tice, along with three other former analysts, Diane Ring, Thomas Reinbold, and another analyst who wishes to remain anonymous, make the allegations of unfounded psychological labeling by the agency; their allegations are corroborated by a current NSA officer who also wishes to remain anonymous. [CYBERCAST NEWS SERVICE, 1/25/2006]

Identifying a Potential Spy -- Tice, a former signals intelligence (SIGINT) officer, is the first NSA whistleblower to capture the media’s attention, when in 2004, the Pentagon investigated possible NSA retaliation against him. In 2001, Tice reported that a co-worker at the Pentagon’s Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) was possibly engaged in espionage for China, possibly connected to California Republican official and Chinese double agent Katrina Leung. [DEMOCRACY NOW!, 1/3/2006; CYBERCAST NEWS SERVICE, 1/25/2006] Tice says, “I saw all the classic signs” in the DIA employee. After transferring to the NSA in November 2002, he reported his concerns again, this time adding criticisms of incompetence for the FBI, who in Tice’s view failed to properly investigate his allegations. Instead, Tice was ordered by NSA Security to undergo psychiatric evaluation. He was labeled “paranoid” and “psychotic” by NSA forensic psychologist Dr. John Michael Schmidt; Tice lost his top-secret security clearance as a result. [CYBERCAST NEWS SERVICE, 1/25/2006]

Fired -- He was fired from the NSA in 2005 after spending his last years at the agency pumping gas and working in an agency warehouse. “I reported my suspicion and got blown off,” he says. “I pushed the issue and that ticked them off, the fact that I questioned their almighty wisdom.” [COX NEWS SERVICE, 5/5/2005] Tice again made news on January 10, 2006 (see January 10, 2006), when he admitted to being a source for the New York Times’s article about a secret NSA electronic surveillance program against American citizens, a program carried out in the name of combating terrrorism. [ABC NEWS, 1/10/2006]

No Evidence of Mental Instability -- As for Tice’s own psychological evaluation by Schmidt, according to three other clinical psychologists, there is “no evidence” of either of the disorders in Tice’s mental makeup. And another NSA psychologist pronounced Tice mentally sound in 2002, though having a “somewhat rigid approach to situations.” Tice is described by five retired NSA and intelligence officials as “congenial,” “enthusiastic,” and “a scholar of high intellectual rigor [with] sound judgment [and] unparalleled professionalism.” Tice says of the NSA’s attempts to smear whistleblowers with apparently baseless psychological allegations, “This nonsense has to stop. It’s like Soviet-era torture. These people are vicious and sadistic. They’re destroying the lives of good people, and defrauding the public of good analysts and linguists.” But it has been effective in cowing others who were, in Tice’s words, “too afraid or ashamed to come forward.” [CYBERCAST NEWS SERVICE, 1/25/2006]

Further Allegations -- Another former analyst, now employed by another federal agency and who only allows himself to be identified as “J,” describes similar targeting by the NSA. J is fluent in an unusually high number of languages, and is described by former colleagues as “brilliant” and possessed of “amazing” critical skills. “I believe the abuse is very widespread,” J says. “The targeted person suddenly is described as ‘not being a team player,’ as ‘disgruntled,’ and then they’re accused of all sorts of bizarre things. Soon they’re sent to the psych people.” J himself was targeted in September 1993 (see September 11, 1993) when he and other analysts concluded that the United States was being targeted by Islamic terrorists, and then again in early 2001 after predicting a terrorist attack using planes as weapons (see May 2001).

NSA Like the 'Gestapo' -- A third whistleblower, a current NSA officer who refuses to be identified, confirms the allegations and says that baseless psychiatric allegations as a form of retaliation are “commonplace” at the agency. He says, “A lot of people who work there are going through the same thing. People live in fear here. They run it like some kind of Gestapo.” Those identified as “problems” are “yelled at, badgered and abused.…These are really good people, who start to be labeled crazy, but they’re telling the truth.” The official adds that the NSA often plants false evidence in personnel files as part of the intimidation campaign. Tice says the NSA maintains what he calls a “dirt database” of inconsequential but potentially embarrassing information on employees, gathered during routine clearance investigations and used as a form of leverage. The current officer says that an “underground network” has developed to discuss these issues. “It’s like the Nazis have taken over,” he says. [CYBERCAST NEWS SERVICE, 1/25/2006]

Personal Vendettas -- Diane Ring is another former NSA official targeted by her superiors. Unlike Tice, a self-described conservative who believes President Bush should be impeached over the NSA’s illegal wiretapping program, Ring is a Bush supporter who believes the surveillance program is entirely proper. Ring, a former NSA computer scientist, says she was ordered to undergo psychiatric evaluations after coming into conflict with a colonel at the Pentagon. Ring is not a whistleblower per se like the others, but says she was targeted for retaliation because of a personal vendetta against her. The colonel “blew up” at Ring after she missed a meeting and explained that her branch chief had her working on a classified program that took priority over the meeting. Ring also was evaluated by Dr. Schmidt. When she complained about the apparent retaliation, her security clearance was, like Tice’s, revoked, and she was “red-badged,” or put on restricted access within the NSA offices. Ring says she received an excellent job evaluation just three months prior to the actions taken against her. She says her colleagues at the time were told not to talk to her, and she was restricted to working in a room filled with other red-badgers. She thinks she was isolated as part of an intentional campaign to force her to leave the agency. “They had these red-badgers spread out all over the place.” she recalls. “Some were sent to pump gas in the motor pool and chauffeur people around. In our room, some people brought sleeping bags in and slept all day long. Others read. I would think that would incense the taxpaying public.” Schmidt eventually reported that another doctor diagnosed Ring with a “personality disorder,” but Ring has a July 21, 2005 letter from that doctor, Lawrence Breslau, which reads in part, “On mental status examination including cognitive assessment she performs extremely well.” In the letter, Breslau says he never made such a diagnosis. She, like others in her position, went to the NSA Employee Assistance Service (EAS) for confidential counseling, but the current NSA officer says that though those sessions are supposed to be confidential, NSA officials can and do obtain “confidential” sessions for retaliatory purposes. “Their goal is to freak you out, to get inside your mind,” that officer says. Rice claims that NSA General Counsel Paul Caminos lied about her case before a judge, denying that he had sent an internal e-mail forbidding anyone from supporting Ring. Ring says she was “floored” by Caminos’s actions: “I served in Bosnia. We had mines going off all around us, all day long. That was nothing compared to this.” She is currently working on clearing her name with the NSA’s new director, Lieutenant General Keith Alexander. Ring believes that the problem at NSA involves a small number of people, “The whole lot of them is corrupt though. There is zero integrity in the process. And zero accountability.”

MR. WALTERS: Rehabilitation Project Force. That is a disciplinarian level. When a person is not following the written policy and intentions of L. Ron Hubbard, or they failed in any way to either get people's money or to brainwash them or handle somebody who goes to an official, he is then put in a very degraded position, which will be, like, being stripped of, you know, what ever titles he has. He has to wear dirty old clothes, a dirty rag. He must clean floors and sewers and things like that until he realizes how degraded he is. And when he does that, he is allowed, then, to come back. During that time, he is not allowed to talk to anyone; no Scientologist can talk to him. He is treated in a degraded manner; it's technology.

***

MS. TAVERNA: When I was at the Fort Harrison, there was a thing called the RPF, which is the Rehabilitation Project Force. I never felt good about this. There's a lot of things in Scientology that I never felt good about. I saw them and kind of just didn't understand them, especially, when I saw some of my friends in this RPF, very nice, good people. One day they would be fine and smiling and, then a good friend of mine, the next day, she was in this RPF. She was -- everyone in it has to wear blue. They wear blue shorts and shirts. They're not allowed to speak to anyone. They had to always run; you're never allowed to stop. If you stopped running, you're punished or put into something more severe, which is called the RPF's RPF, if you break the rules. That's something that most Scientologists don't know about. I didn't know that much about it at the time. But all I know is what I saw. I saw a few people who looked very sick. One woman had sores all over her body, open sores. I went into my friend. I asked her if I'm allowed to speak to her. She said, "You can speak to your friend, but in the RPF they're not allowed to communicate to anyone outside the RPF." So, I went to her, and she kept her head down. And when I addressed her, I said -- her eyes were all swollen, she had been crying. And I said, "What happened?" She said she couldn't talk about it, and she said -- she called me "Sir." As a matter of fact, this is the person who recruited me for that Operation Z, a very bright, beautiful, young girl. And in the RPF, if anyone speaks to you, you have to address them as "Sir." And I felt very upset for her. I cried, thinking that she was calling me "Sir." But she just said, "It's going to be fine," you know, through tears in her eyes. And I don't know the details of why she got in there. People in the RPF are not allowed to eat with the rest of the people. After we finished eating, they would come and eat whatever, you know, was left, you know, same food, though, but never sit at the table with another person. They're considered a lower -- you know, a lower level. And the purpose of it is to rehabilitate them because they have become so degraded and so psychotic that they have to be separated and go through this particular physical work. They work for half a day and get audited or processed for half a day until they come up to the next level.

***

MR. RAY: I went to talk to my supervisor and the second I — that I mentioned that I was sick, okay, he got extremely violent in his tone of voice to me and started yelling at me and screaming at me, saying, you know, "Don't get sick. We need you to work. You can't have any time off, period. There's no way we're going to let you have any time off." And I just said, "Wait a minute." I was just too tired to argue. So, I would go up with my cart, like I was cleaning rooms, and I would open up one of the rooms that was empty and I'd lay down and go to sleep. I was just so tired; There was — I could barely carry myself up the stairs, just barely make it. And I'd go in there and go to sleep. And I did that several times. And eventually — this was right before I left — I wound up in the RPF, Rehabilitation Project Force. And was I in for a surprise. What it is is a group of people that have done something, what they consider, against the Church of Scientology, okay? The Rehabilitation Project Force is the last thing they do to try to save your being before they kick you out, okay? And I was scared to death to be kicked out, because me, along with everybody else who's there, has a basic need inside to do something good for somebody else, okay? And we were led to believe that we were doing something good for a whole lot of people, and — we didn't want to lose that. I didn't want to lose that. So, I said, "Okay. I'll go into the RPF." So, I went in there. And basically, what it is is emptying all the garbage out of the restaurants, okay? Restaurant garbage is wet; it's old food; it's got flies and all kinds of bugs crawling around in it. And we would pick up the cans, take them down to the garbage dump, dump them into the garbage dump. And then, at the end of the day, we'd have to go in there in our shoes and stomp it down. And I don't know what kind of diseases we were exposed to, but we were getting some really weird ones, okay? ...And you'd get inside there and this restaurant garbage would be just like quicksand. You'd go all the way to the bottom. You'd be, you know, more than waist deep in this stuff, all right, and it smelled awful. And then, you'd have to go back and clean up, okay? And the food that they served the RPFers was just rotten. They served all the leftovers after all of the staff on the whole base, all the buildings, ate, okay? Then, we ate alone, whatever was left over. And it wasn't very good. And it didn't give us the nourishment that we needed to keep our bodies going....Good grief. It would be pieces — sometimes, pieces of meat, pieces of beef or chicken or pork, usually a salad and a drink. But the salad was wilted and it smelled rotten, like, it had been — you know, somebody had dumped sour milk on it. The cheese was no good. It was all molded, but molded to the point it was fuzzy, you know, like a peach. And one time they had french fries there, and I picked up a handful of french fries and started eating them and I found a french fried palmetto bug in my french fries. And I wondered how many I had eaten, you know, when I saw that one. So, I threw that out.

-- City of Clearwater Commission Hearings Re: The Church of Scientology, State of Florida, City of Clearwater


'Psychiatric Abuse' 'Very Widespread' -- Like his fellow whistleblowers, former NSA officer Thomas Reinbold says the practice of “psychiatric abuse” inside the NSA is “very widespread.” Reinbold, who recelved 26 commendations and awards during his career at the NSA, including a medal for the intelligence he provided during the 1991 Gulf War, says, “They call it ‘doing a mental’ on someone.” Such practices have a “chilling effect” on other potential whistleblowers: “They fear for their careers because they fear someone will write up bad [psychological] fitness reports on them.” Reinhold was labeled “paranoid” and “delusional” by Schmidt after he complained to an inspector general on February 25, 1994, that the federal government was guilty of contract tampering; Schmidt’s evaluation contradicts a psychological evaluation he conducted on Reinbold eight months before that found he was mentally sound. At the time, Reinbold worked as a contracting officer representative for the Naval Security Group (NAVSECGRU) in Virginia. Reinbold had his high-level security clearance revoked, and was escorted off the grounds by armed security officers. Reinbold says NSA officials fabricated evidence in his personnel file to force him out; that evidence included allegations that he was a danger to himself and others, and that he had said “if [he] was going down, [he] would take everyone with him.” In September 1995, an administrative hearing found that the revocation of Reinbold’s security clearance was unjustified and recommended restoring his clearance, but did not allow the damaging information to be removed from his personnel file. He later sued the agency, and then retired because of diabetes. “I gave 29 years of my life to the intelligence community,” he recalls. “They couldn’t get me out the door fast enough. There are very good people, getting screwed and going through hell.”

Helping Those Who Come After -- Some of the whistleblowers hope to gain the assistance of politicians to help their cases. But Tice is less optimistic. “Our time is over,” Tice says he told Ring. “But we can make a difference for those who come behind us.” The five whistleblowers have the support of the whistleblower advocacy group Integrity International. Its founder and director, Dr. Don Soeken, himself a whistleblower while he was with the US Public Health Service in the 1970s, says, “When this retaliation first starts, there’s a tendency by bosses to use code words like ‘delusional,’ ‘paranoid’ and ‘disgruntled’. Then they use psychiatric exams to destroy them. They kill the messenger and hope the PR spin will be bought by the public.” Tom Devine of the Government Accountability Project says that “psychiatric retaliation” is a knee-jerk reaction against whistleblowers: “It’s a classic way to implement the first rule of retaliation: shift the spotlight from the message to the messenger. We call it the ‘Smokescreen Syndrome.’” Superiors investigate and smear the whistleblower for anything from financial irregularities to family problems, sexual practices, bad driving records, or even failure to return library books, Devine says. “It’s a form of abuse of power.” The Whistleblower Protection Act was written to protect those like Tice, Ring, Reinbold, and Soeken, but, says Beth Daly of the Project on Government Oversight (POGO), the act has serious flaws. “You have to go through the inspector general or the director of the CIA to let them know if you’re going to Congress and what you’re going to disclose,” she says. “And inspector generals are notorious for revealing who whistleblowers are.”

Entity Tags: Paul Caminos, Project for Government Oversight, Naval Security Group, Russell Tice, Tom Devine, Thomas Reinbold, National Security Agency, US Public Health Service, Keith Alexander, Lawrence Breslau, Diane Ring, Defense Intelligence Agency, Beth Daly, Don Soeken, House National Security Subcommittee, Government Accountability Project, John Michael Schmidt, Integrity International, “J”

February 14, 2006: NSA Official Says Agency Has More Extensive Surveillance Program Than Previously Reported

Former National Security Agency (NSA) intelligence analyst and current whistleblower Russell Tice tells the House Government Reform Subcommittee on National Security, Emerging Threats, and International Relations that he worries about what he calls a “special access” electronic surveillance program that is far more wide-ranging than the warrantless wiretapping recently exposed by the New York Times. However, Tice says he is forbidden by law to reveal specifics of the program to Congress. Tice says he believes the program violates the Constitution’s protection against unlawful search and seizures, but for him to discuss it with anyone in Congress or even with the NSA’s inspector general would violate classification laws. A spokesman for Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) says both Kucinich and committee chairman Christopher Shays (R-CT) believe that a few members of the Armed Services Committee have high enough security clearances for Tice’s information: “Congressman Kucinich wants Congressman Shays to hold a hearing [on the program]. Obviously it would have to take place in some kind of a closed hearing. But Congress has a role to play in oversight. The [Bush] administration does not get to decide what Congress can and can not hear.” In January 2006, it emerged Tice was one of the sources for the New York Times’s revelation that the NSA is engaged in possibly illegal wiretapping of American civilians as part of the war on terror (see January 10, 2006). Tice was fired from the NSA in 2005 and labeled “paranoid,” a classification Tice says was pasted on him in retaliation for his whistleblowing both inside the agency and to the public (see January 25-26, 2006). [UNITED PRESS INTERNATIONAL, 2/14/2006] Author James Bamford, an expert on US intelligence, says, “The congressional intelligence committees have lost total control over the intelligence communities. You can’t get any oversight or checks and balances; the Congress is protecting the White House and the White House can do whatever it wants.” [IN THESE TIMES, 5/15/2006]
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