20 December 2007

Extracting the truth from the myth

The Echo has again published an article about my case, this time highlighting the new evidence that has emerged to challenge the Prosecution case at my trial. Unfortunately, this article mixes up a few of the facts with some of the myths that were put out by the MoD and MI5 at the time of my arrest, when it seemed that those organisations were desperate to see military secrets where there were none.

However, the article does indicate the encouraging point that Members of Parliament, Mr Andrew Mackinlay and Mr James Duddridge, are looking into my case again. It is to be hoped that they will try to raise the key issues with those who can get to the bottom of what went wrong at my trial.

I have added the following comment to the page where the article appears on the Echo website:

It is a pity that this article repeats the same untrue account that has done the rounds for years. I never sold military secrets to the Russians, and certainly not to Viktor Oshchenko, who left the UK in 1979, 11 years before the period covered by my trial.

In fact, at my trial it could not be proved that I met any “Russian” contact, and MI5 had to admit that they had no evidence I had met anyone in the KGB. The claim about “secrets” is also simply ludicrous, because I had the lowest security clearance, and I was prohibited from even seeing a “secret” document, let alone having one in my possession.

The so-called secrets amounted to one document marked “restricted” and dated 1982 - a document that became obsolete in 1984 and replaced by a different specification that was marked “unclassified” - this point alone indicates that the MoD judged the information was NOT secret before my trial.

That an obsolete, low-level document was claimed to be a “top secret” just proves how the truth can be twisted by those that have no regard for British Justice. Unfortunately, lies take the place of evidence in cases such as mine.

18 December 2007

MoD misled Sir Peter Woodhead, Prison Ombudsman

Having had my letters to the press stopped by the Prison Service, I considered this a basic denial of my human right to free speech, and I naturally appealed against the decision as far as I could take it, which eventually led to a report by the Prison Ombudsman Sir Peter Woodhead.

The interesting thing is that it was again the Ministry of Defence that came into this affair, and they compounded the injustice by claiming that the “restricted” document exhibit at my trial should have been marked “SECRET”. This is so unfair, when it is now known that the document concerned became obsolete in 1984, and that the later iterations of the specification used on the ALARM missile were only marked “unclassified”.

This is yet another example of how the MoD is quite prepared to lie and distort the truth. The MoD seems not to care that they have persuaded members of their staff to commit perjury in order to justify my conviction for espionage. I believe this is a blatant example of perverting the course of justice, but being the MoD I expect they will get away with their crime.

I print below the full text of the Prison Ombudsman’s report of my complaint.

Prisons Ombudsman
CASE NO: 10658/98 - MR M SMITH

1. Complaint

1.1 Mr Smith complained that he had been prevented from sending an article to the media concerning his crime and trial.

2. Background

2.1 Mr Smith submitted a request/complaint form to the Governor of Full Sutton, dated 12 January 1998, saying that a letter he had written to the New Scientist had been stopped by the censor because it infringed a Standing Order. He said he wished to challenge this ruling. The response from a governor, dated 22 January, said that the letter referred to Mr Smith's crime and trial and therefore, because it could be published, it was appropriate to withhold the letter under the Standing Order.

2.2 Not happy with this response Mr Smith appealed to Prison Service Headquarters on 1 February. He said that his letter was concerning his crime and was a serious comment on the process of justice. He stated that the prison had mis-interpreted the Standing Order. He said it was plain that the Standing Order allowed him to write such letters. The response Mr Smith received from the Directorate of Dispersals Unit, dated 19 May, said that Standing Order 5B imposed restrictions on the sending of correspondence of a certain nature, one of which was correspondence that would jeopardise national security. Another was where correspondence concerned an inmate's crime, although there was an exception where serious representations were being made against conviction. It concluded that the action taken by the Governor was appropriate given the nature of the letters.

2.3 On 26 January, following receipt of the Governor's answer to his complaint, Mr Smith had written to Mr Mullin MP about the matter. Mr Mullin responded saying that he would write to the Governor of Full Sutton. In response to a letter from Mr Mullin the Governor forwarded a copy of Standing Order 5B and said that he was satisfied the correct procedures had been followed in stopping Mr Smith's letters. Mr Mullin wrote to me on 24 April asking me to investigate Mr Smith's complaint.

3. Investigation

3.1 During the course of this investigation the relevant papers from Mr Smith's Prison Service Headquarters file were obtained. My investigating office also spoke to the member of staff at the Directorate of Dispersals Support Unit who dealt with Mr Smith's appeal and wrote to the Ministry of Defence. A copy of the Report of the Security Commission dated July 1995, mentioned in one of Mr Smith's letters, was also obtained.

3.2 Mr Smith submitted a request/complaint form to the Governor of Full Sutton, dated 12 January 1998, in which he said that his letter to the New Scientist had been stopped by the censor because it infringed Standing Order 5B. He said he challenged this decision because the relevant words in the order, contained in paragraph 34(9)(C) , said that general correspondence may not contain material which is intended for publication except where it consists of serious representations about conviction or sentence or forms part of serious comment about crime, the process of justice or the penal system. Mr Smith added that his letter was not actually about his offence but his trial and that he wrote the letter in response to an on-going discussion in the magazine about the way lawyers misuse expert scientist testimony.

3.3 The governor's response to the complaint, dated 22 January, said:-

"The letter in question makes reference to your crime and your trial. The letter was also addressed to the editor of the New Scientist and could have been published. It is therefore appropriate that the letter was withheld under SO 5B."

3.4 Mr Smith appealed against this on 1 February saying that the reply he received from the governor was "a perverse interpretation of the Standing Order and therefore incorrect and unacceptable". He said that his letter complied with the order. The letter to the New Scientist was for publication, mentioned his crime and trial and was a serious comment about the process of justice. He said the letter clearly contributed to a serious debate about the abuse of expert testimony. He said it was plain that SO 5B para 34(9)(C) allowed him to write such letters.

3.5 Prison Service Headquarters wrote to the prison to ask why the Governor had taken the decision to stop the letter being sent and asked for a copy of it together with other letters that had been stopped. The response from the prison said that the contents of the letter looked at the issues of scientific evidence and clearly looked at the validity of this in Mr Smith's case. It was prevented from leaving the establishment because it was addressed to the editor of the New Scientist and had every possibility of being published. The headquarters caseworker said that Mr Smith could no doubt argue that he was raising genuine concerns about the justice system but it was clear that the letter was highlighting concerns about his own case. He said the identification of the witness by name i.e. Dr X is Dr.... may be a breach of national security. The response from the Directorate of Dispersals Support Unit, dated 19 May, said:-

"Thank you for your request/complaint. I am sorry for the delay in replying. This answer is on behalf of the Director of Dispersal prisons. Standing Order 5B imposes restrictions on the nature of correspondence which may be sent out by prisoners. One restriction is where that correspondence would jeopardise national security. Another is where correspondence is intended for publication (or likely to be published) and deals with the inmate's own crime. I appreciate there is an exception where the matter raised consists of serious representations about conviction, but in all the circumstances it is considered the actions taken by the governor in this instance was appropriate given the nature of the letters."

3.6 Prior to receiving this reply and following receipt of the response to his complaint from the prison Mr Smith wrote to Mr Mullin MP on 26 January. He said that he had been asked by a friend for a short article on his case for publication in the Tribune. He said that he had prepared brief details of his case, which included some important new information that clearly pointed to his case being a miscarriage of justice, but that the prison had stopped his letters because they infringed a Standing Order. Mr Smith included the article in his letter to Mr Mullin and asked that the MP help him to "expose the corrupt operation that led to my arrest and conviction". He also asked whether there had been any changes to the Standing Order that meant he could not write to the media protesting that there had been a miscarriage of justice in his case.

3.7 Mr Mullin replied to Mr Smith on 6 February to say that he was not in a position to investigate his case and suggested that he wrote to the Criminal Cases Review Commission. He said that he was surprised to hear that Mr Smith had been prevented from writing to journalists and said he would look into this. Mr Mullin wrote to the Governor of Full Sutton asking whether there had been any recent change to the Standing Orders. He said he was surprised that Mr Smith's letters had been stopped because he understood that prisoners, who alleged their innocence, were allowed to communicate in writing with the press and that because of this a number of celebrated miscarriages of justice had been resolved. The Governor responded on 13 February. He said that Mr Smith's letter had been addressed to 'Letters to the Editor' at the New Scientist and that it was reasonable to presume that he wanted the letter to be published. He said that Mr Smith had also written letters to two friends both of which contained references to his crime and in particular to the evidence given by one witness. The letter went on to say that the contents of Mr Smith's letter contravened Standing Order 5B paragraph 34.9(c) (which he quoted) and commented on the sensitive nature of Mr Smith's offence and the potential disquiet that might arise in the public domain if his correspondence should be published in national publications. Mr Mullin responded to this letter on 3 March saying that, without knowing the precise nature of the correspondence, it was difficult to make a judgement except to say that if Mr Smith was making "serious representations" about the safety of his conviction he should be allowed, according to the Standing Order, to send his letters whether or not they were intended for publication. He concluded by saying that he would be asking Mr Smith for a copy of the censored material in order that he could make an informed judgement.

3.8 Mr Mullin wrote to me on 24 April enclosing his exchange of correspondence with the Governor of Full Sutton, as well as a letter from another prisoner who had had his mail stopped, asking me to look into their complaints. I made some initial enquiries and responded to Mr Mullin on 14 May. I advised him that although Mr Smith had not received a reply to his appeal, because it had been with Prison Service Headquarters for over six weeks,I could accept his complaint for investigation. I was unable, however, to accept the complaint from the other prisoner because he had not appealed against the Governor's reply to his complaint and it was now out of time.

3.9 Mr Smith wrote to my investigating officer on 6 June. By this date he had received a reply to his appeal with which he was not satisfied. He said the Prison Service had not given him a proper explanation as to why his letters had been stopped. He said he strongly objected to the comment that his correspondence might "jeopardise national security". Mr Smith, who was charged with espionage, had said that part of his eight week trial was held 'in camera’. He said that his defence had objected to this because he had not dealt with sensitive material. The only classified documents Mr Smith said he had dealt with were at the lowest level of restricted. He said the two areas in which his trial was held ‘in camera' were concerning spy 'tradecraft' and scientific evidence. The first spy 'tradecraft' matter concerned the prosecution's evidence and the opinions of Oleg Gordievsky who claimed that the notes made by Mr Smith, of his meetings with the man who bribed him, were typical of KGB practice. However, the defence expert (a senior CIA officer) found no evidence to show that the notes were unique to the KGB. Also it was claimed that Mr Smith had met Victor Oschenko in the 1970s but the prosecution offered no evidence to support this. Mr Smith claimed that the Crown Prosecution Service was involved in a conspiracy to hide the fact that Victor Oschenko had been involved with MI6 long before his defection and they had lied about his relationship with Mr Smith. The second area where Mr Smith's trial was held 'in camera' concerned the scientific evidence. He said that a small amount of documents were found in his possession at the time of his arrest, most of which were dated 5 to 12 years before his arrest. He added that, of these, only one was found to be classified and this was at the lowest level. He added that the prosecution called a number of technical experts who said that most of the documentation was sensitive but that the defence expert was able to prove that the material was either available in the public domain or the material in the public domain was similar or more comprehensive. Mr Smith said in conclusion that the prosecution had failed to show that he had dealt with the Russian KGB or had in his possession, or passed on to a third party, any sensitive technical information.

3.10 My investigating officer spoke to the member of staff in the Directorate of Dispersal Support Unit to ask the basis on which they had decided that Mr Smith's letters "may be a breach of national security". The response was that this conclusion had been reached because Mr Smith had named names which may breach the Official Secrets Act. To obtain further information my investigating officer wrote to the Assistant Under Secretary at the Ministry of Defence, enclosing Mr Smith's letters, and asked whether the contents of the letters, if published, would breach the Official Secrets Act and/or jeopardise national security. The response said:-

"You enclosed copies of a number of letters which the Governor of Full Sutton Prison refused Mr Smith permission to send to his intended addressees. These letters have been examined by this Department and by the Security Service.

"The Ministry of Defence has examined Mr Smith's letters to see whether the disclosure of any of the information that he wishes to give about Defence equipments and weapons systems would be damaging to national security. Our consideration is that some of this information should be marked SECRET; and that the letters should therefore not be sent.

"The Security Service has examined Mr Smith's letters to see whether the disclosure of any information that he wishes to give about counter-intelligence operations or capabilities would be damaging to national security. Their conclusion is that they would not object to the disclosure of what he says about matters of this kind.

"I very much hope that the Ombudsman would feel able to uphold the decision of the Governor of Full Sutton Prison not to allow these letters to be sent. In that case I should be grateful if all the copies of them could be marked SECRET. I would also ask that Mr Smith should not be allowed to keep copies of them or to write any further letter containing the same material.

"In the postscript to the letter which he wished to send to the Editor of the New Scientist on 10 December 1997 Mr Smith says that he has been allowed to keep copies of all the sensitive exhibits. He should not have any protectively marked material in his possession. I am taking this point up separately.

"I should make it clear that I am not making any comments in this letter on whether the information contained in Mr Smith's letters is true or false. My comments are concerned only with whether its disclosure would be damaging to national security.

"I have one further point. You comment in your letter that Mr Smith's trial took place in camera. That implies that any disclosure now of information about what took place in the criminal proceedings would be likely to be in breach of orders which were made by the trial judge. Since Mr Smith's letters purport to describe allegations made and evidence given during the course of the trial, this is an aspect which you may wish to pursue separately.

"This letter is UNCLASSIFIED. If it would be helpful to the Ombudsman to have some further information requiring a protective marking, please let me know. Please also let me know if there is any further assistance that I can give you."

4. Consideration

4.1 Mr Smith has complained that the Prison Service refused to allow him to send an article to the media and letters to friends about his crime and trial because they contravene Standing Order 5B paragraph 34(9)(c).

4.2 Prison Service Standing Order 5B concerns correspondence and the particular paragraph quoted states general correspondence may not contain the following:-

34(9) "Material which is intended for publication or for use by radio or television (or which, if sent, would be likely to be published or broadcast) if it:......................

(c) is about an inmate's own crime or past offence or those of others, except where it consists of serious representations about conviction or sentence or forms part of serious comment about crime, the process of justice or the penal system."

4.3 Mr Smith has said that his article and letters were a serious comment about 'the corrupt practices of the British Judicial System' and the miscarriage of justice in his case. Such a letter, according to the Standing Order is permissible. However, in Mr Smith's case, because he was convicted under the Official Secrets Acts, there is the question of the contents of his letters and whether they may breach the Official Secrets Act and/or endanger national security. Section (4) of paragraph 34 of Standing Order 5B prohibits the sending of:-

(4) Material which may jeopardise national security."

4.4 The Governor of Full Sutton stopped Mr Smith's letter because he said that the contents contravened Standing Order 5B paragraph 34(9)(c) and the response from the Directorate of Dispersals Support Unit said that 'one restriction was where that correspondence would jeopardise national security'. It is apparent that the official in the Directorate of Dispersals Support Unit reached the conclusion that the correspondence should be stopped because Mr Smith had referred to certain individuals by name.

4.5 Having studied Mr Smith's letters and read the Report of the Security Commission I note that some details appear in both and, as the report is in the public domain, there could be no objection to those parts of his letters. This is in accord with the advice from the Ministry of Defence which said the Security Service had no objection to the disclosure of what Mr Smith had said about counter-intelligence operations or capabilities. However, the Ministry of Defence is concerned about information about defence equipment and weapons systems being disclosed which it considers would be damaging to national security. The MOD has advised that these aspects of Mr Smith's letters should be regarded as classified information and therefore should not be used in his representations to the press and friends about his conviction and sentence. On this matter of whether disclosure of the material would endanger national security I must accept the guidance of the MOD and I cannot uphold Mr Smith's complaint that it was wrong of the Prison Service to prevent him sending this material. It does however appear that the Prison Service may have prevented Mr Smith from sending the letters for the wrong reasons. Decisions to prevent a prisoner making such serious representations as Mr Smith appears to wish to make should not be taken lightly and ought to be able to be fully justified. I am therefore surprised that the Prison Service did not obtain advice from the relevant authorities to support its decision.

5. Recommendation

5.1 I do not uphold Mr Smith's complaint and make no recommendation.


18 August 1998

Prison Ombudsman Report page 1

Prison Ombudsman Report page 2

Prison Ombudsman page 3

Prison Ombudsman page 4

Prison Ombudsman page 5

Prison Ombudsman page 6

Prison Ombudsman page 7

15 December 2007

Euan Ferguson's boring spies

I came across a recent article in the Observer by Euan Ferguson that attracted my attention, in which he attempts to be humorous about spies and the game of spying. Unfortunately, to people like me, this business is far from funny when you have spent over ten years locked up in prison for espionage activities that never actually happened.

I decided that I should invite Euan to investigate a real story, and to offer a public service by uncovering the truth about my “spy” case. See my open e-mail to Euan Ferguson below:

Hi Euan,

I have only just noticed your article in the Observer of 2 December: "Spies; I want them to be very boring". I presume that the reference in your article to "Mike Smith" refers to me, and that "Peter Hill" is the Peter Hill arrested last month, as yet another alleged top-level Russian spy?

I agree with you that this whole business of spying should be more boring, but it seems that when it does get interesting then this is the very time that journalists like you choose to bury your heads in the sand.

I'll tell you the true spy story, and dare you to print it. On my blog I have published almost too much detail about my conviction as a "KGB spy", and most of my legal documents and all of those top secret exhibits are now published on the Internet for everybody to read. So, there is no excuse for any journalist to say that they were prevented from knowing about the "secrets" that I was convicted of betraying during my in camera trial.

Far from there being evidence that I was meeting a Russian intelligence officer, and handing over sensitive national secrets, the Prosecution offered up evidence of a tourist map of Oporto from one of my holidays, and a bungled entrapment operation by Special Branch on the morning of my arrest. There was no evidence of a real spying operation, because even Stella Rimington (remember her?) had to testify that MI5 had no evidence I had met any Russian intelligence officers.

I am sure the jury were heavily influenced by the claim that I had put British serviceman's lives at risk through my possession of a document, dated 1982 and marked "restricted", which it was claimed was used on ALARM missiles in service during the Gulf War of 1991. It is now known that this document was made obsolete in 1984, and superseded by a different document that was actually "unclassified". And I wonder just what effect that evidence would have had on my jury - if they had had the chance to hear it?

This is where the story gets vague, and needs the expertise of a journalist such as you to dig for the truth. Somebody decided it was not necessary to interview any of the 16 people who had been on the circulation list of that "restricted" document, all of whom should have known that the document was made obsolete in 1984. 1984 - it has even got a hint of George Orwell about it, hasn't it? As a consequence my Defence lawyers and the whole courtroom were deceived into believing that an old obsolete document was still in use on the current production of ALARM missiles.

Whether this miscarriage of justice at my trial was due to incompetence, or mistakes, or the deliberate actions of wicked people, is not within my knowledge to prove. However, to those who seek the truth and wish to make public the failings of a real “spy” trial, then my case is crying out for the attention of the best investigative journalists. It may not have the glamour of the James Bond style that is considered sexy, but rather than fiction this is a real story about real people and actual events.

Oh yes, and I shall print this email on my blog to show the world what a scoop I have given to you on a plate.

Kind regards,
Mike Smith

11 December 2007

CCRC fails me in my miscarriage of justice case

This morning I phoned my case manager at the Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC), Ms Angela Flower, to check that she had received the new evidence that I have uncovered, regarding deficiencies during my trial and the false significance attached to an old ‘restricted’ document. Ms Flower told me that the CCRC will investigate my points and get back to me when they have a decision.

I informed Ms Flower that Mr Andrew Mackinlay MP had raised a parliamentary question about the ‘restricted’ document 2 years ago, and he had specifically asked when the document became obsolete. Mr Adam Ingram MP declined to answer that question on 10 January 2006, on the basis that the CCRC was currently investigating the matter.

The CCRC clearly did NOT investigate this matter, because they gave me a provisional rejection a few months later in July 2006. Mr Martin Winstone, who is currently responsible for the ALARM missile at MBDA, was also asked about the significance of the ‘restricted’ document, and he likewise failed to draw attention to the fact that it became obsolete in 1984, and so could not have been used on an ALARM missile.

I have spoken on the phone to Mr Winstone myself, and he declined to comment on the status of the document. The CCRC are aware of the importance of this issue and that their failure to uncover evidence about the document has led me to conduct my own investigations - I now appear to know more about this matter than the CCRC do.

This is a very sad reflection on the competence of the CCRC, and the underhanded methods being used by certain individuals to prevent the truth from becoming public. It needs to be fully investigated why the document’s obsolescence was not disclosed to my Defence, because it led to my trial being unfair. Once this matter is resolved we can then, hopefully, move towards an Appeal and a re-trial.

10 December 2007

A question to Adam Ingram MP

I have today sent a message to Mr Adam Ingram MP on the Parliamentary website.

From: Michael John Smith

Subject: Your answer to Andrew Mackinlay on Marconi - written answers 10 January 2006

I must refer you to your reply in Hansard to the question from Mr Andrew Mackinlay MP. I never imagined that you had or intended to mislead Mr Mackinlay, and it would appear that you were deliberately mis-informed by one of your staff members.

I now believe you were unwittingly drawn into a conspiracy within the MoD to mislead Parliament for political reasons.

I have added a comment to the webpage below, which should give you a clear indication about what I am claiming was an injustice caused to me by the MoD:


I ask you to revisit this question and to ask yourself whether your answer was an honest one.

Appeal to Prosecution and Defence Counsel for Justice

It is commonly known that the administration of the Law relies on the integrity and honesty of individual members of the legal profession. Without such high standards our legal system would cease to earn the respect that it deserves.

I now know beyond doubt that key evidence was withheld from the Court at my trial, although I cannot be certain which organisation or individuals were responsible for that deficiency. During my struggle to get to the heart of what went wrong at my trial I have been assured by the Home Office, the Crown Prosecution Service, and the Ministry of Defence that all was well, and that there were no failings or non-disclosure in my case. I now know that those assurances were false.

It is time to appeal to the barristers and QCs who represented the Prosecution and Defence at my trial. I hope that these lawyers, who have a vested interest in the administration of Justice, will now take up my cause and reveal just what went wrong at my trial. I know that the lawyers I have written to, in my e-mail below, will take this matter seriously and investigate why key evidence was withheld from the jury.

Date: Fri, 7 Dec 2007 20:59:46

From: Michael John Smith

To: Sir Derek Spencer QC, 18 Red Lion Court Chambers
Sir John Nutting QC, 3 Raymond Buildings Chambers
Mr John Kelsey-Fry QC, Cloth Fair Chambers

Cc: Mr Rock Tansey QC, 25 Bedford Row Chambers
Mr Michael Mansfield QC, Tooks Chambers
Mr Gary Summers, 7 Bedford Row Chambers
Mr Richard Jefferies, Lound Mulrenan & Jefferies Solicitors

Subject: Regina -v- Michael John Smith (1993)

Dear Sirs,

I am sending you a copy of my most recent letter to the CCRC (attached), in which I am drawing attention to some disturbing failings that occurred during my trial. I have already submitted much material to the CCRC, identifying deficiencies in my case and providing evidence to substantiate my findings.

I am writing to you now because you were personally involved with my case, and I invite you to offer your opinion on the deficiencies I have uncovered. I expect that you were not aware of any problems with the evidence; although I am sure you will be as anxious as I am to rectify the injustice caused to me.

One serious matter I have uncovered concerns the “restricted” document which played such a crucial role during my trial. When Dr Meirion Francis Lewis made a link to the ALARM missile (used in the then recent 1991 Gulf War) it had a significant effect on the course of the trial and gave grounds for my conviction.

It is now certain that Dr Lewis’s testimony of a link to ALARM was triple hearsay, and the source for his claim in Court is apparently untraceable. The “restricted” document was made obsolete in 1984, which makes it impossible for that document to have been used on any actual ALARM missiles. It is a pity that this was not explained to the jury during the trial.

I have a strong suspicion that devious tactics were being employed, at least by the Police investigating the exhibits, because not one of the 16 recipients of that “restricted” document was ever interviewed or asked to give a Witness Statement. As a key exhibit during the trial this anomaly makes no sense, unless the Police knew that interviewing the recipients would harm the Prosecution case.

I look forward to receiving your comment.

Kind regards,
Michael John Smith

09 December 2007

Adam Ingram's MoD cover-up is now exposed

It was 2 years ago that Mr Andrew Mackinlay MP asked the Minister of State for Defence a parliamentary question, on my behalf. As can be seen on the They Work For You website, the reply offered by Mr Adam Ingram MP was far from satisfactory. I left a comment on the website at the time, and tonight I have updated the situation with the latest news to bring the matter fully up-to-date.

My new comment exposes how the Ministry of Defence were intent on covering up the truth, from the very day of my arrest on 8 August 1992. It has taken 15 years for the truth to finally surface, and it is no credit to people like Adam Ingram for adding to my problems. Shame on all those people who have put obstacles in my way in the meantime - who were you trying to protect, and what sort of moral code do you work to?

I have copied the relevant comments below:

Written answers
Tuesday, 10 January 2006

Andrew MacKinlay (Thurrock, Labour)
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence on what date the document known as the Prosecution Exhibit bundle pages 51 to 59 in the case of R v. Michael John Smith held in the Central Criminal Court from September to November 1993, relating to the Marconi Space and Defence Systems Ltd. Demonstrator Programme Requirement Specification Bandpass Filter Assembly component dated 8 January 1982 reference 79481/PBH/BB/SO8 became linked to a weapons system; which weapons system it was linked to; on what date it became obsolete and no longer linked to any weapons system; and if he will make a statement.

Adam Ingram (Minister of State (Armed Forces), Ministry of Defence)
I am currently unable to provide a response to the questions raised as the subject is the matter of an investigation by the Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC) and it would be inappropriate to provide the information requested while this investigation is ongoing.

Michael John Smith
Posted on 18 Jan 2006 1:02 am

I was absolutely disgusted by the answer given by Mr Adam Ingram. How could any answer he gave to this question have affected the outcome to the CCRC's investigation of my case? This was a purely factual matter and not one concerned with opinion or interpretation.

The facts are: an MoD expert stated at my trial that the said document was related to the ALARM missile project; the Technical Director of Marconi was quoted as agreeing to this claim; in 1995, at my appeal, a Deputy Director of MoD Security confirmed the link to ALARM. Then, in the Security Commission's report on my case, it was admitted the MoD's evidence about this document was "seriously incorrect" and it caused a significant problem for the Commission, which resulted in the statement: at the time the document was created it was not specifically linked to a particular weapons system. (HMSO, Cm 2930, July 1995, Annex A.5).

In the espionage cases of Rafael Juan Bravo and Ian Parr, both apparently entrapment scenarios organised by MI5, it was quickly publicised in the media (for example on the Guardian and BBC websites) exactly what projects had been involved, and the level of document classification was also mentioned in those reports. In my case it was claimed that a 'restricted' document was wrongly classified, and the project it was used on was never publicly acknowledged. I would expect the same degree of disclosure as occurred in the Bravo and Parr cases, especially as those cases are quite recent and my case involved a document that is now over 24 years old.

I do not know what the truth is behind that restricted document, but it would appear the MoD is not comfortable to simply confirm that the evidence given at my trial, by their own expert, is correct. I await their further comment, and wonder why they are so reticent to clear up this matter once and for all.

Michael John Smith
Posted on 10 Dec 2007 1:31 am

I never did get a reply from the Ministry of Defence, following Andrew Mackinlays question on the restricted document. This lack of honesty by the MoD was the main reason why I started my blog, because I felt the only way to draw out the truth was to go public and openly question the evidence at my trial.

My fears of a cover-up were well-founded, when the Criminal Case Review Commissions provisional report arrived in July 2006 - the investigation referred to by Adam Ingram. The report brushed aside all my arguments, and it amounts to a whitewash that there were no failings in the legal process. However, I have since learned quite a lot more information about that restricted document, and the misrepresentation that surrounded it. I can now make presumptions about why Adam Ingram felt unable to make a statement disclosing the truth.

The MoD expert, Professor Lewis, whose testimony led to my conviction, claimed in court on 11 October 1993 that he had been told by Marconis Technical Director (in a telephone conversation) that the document was used on the ALARM missile. I talked with that Technical Director in January 2007, and he informed me that he had not known about the documents use, and would have consulted other staff in a different Marconi company. This means the evidence given to the court was at least triple hearsay, and it is significant that nobody will now admit to having been the source for the evidence.

The important fact, which I have only recently learned, is that the restricted document became obsolete on 27 March 1984, and so it was impossible that this was a document used on any actual ALARM missile. It is interesting that Mr Mackinlays question requests a date when the document became obsolete, but the MoD declined to admit that it was obsolete.

The truth is more disturbing, because it appears that a related document, actually used on ALARM in 1991, was unclassified, and MoD staff must have been responsible in deciding that the specification was not sensitive enough to be classified. Therefore, the MoD’s evidence to the Security Commission (1994), that the restricted document should have been classified secret, was dishonest since the document was not in use after 1984.

This all looks very bad for the MoD expert who gave that testimony at my trial in 1993, because he seriously misled the jury into believing that the information in the document was extremely sensitive, and that its contents could endanger British servicemens lives.

I hope that the MoD will now assist me in resolving this matter once and for all, and that they will support a retrial so that the true evidence can be put before a jury.

The truth will out!

06 December 2007

Professor Meirion Francis Lewis gave false evidence at my trial

Professor Meirion Francis Lewis gave evidence at my trial about Exhibit pages 51-59, a restricted document dated January 1982, with the identification number 79481/PBH/BB/SO8. Professor Lewis told the Court that this restricted document was used on ALARM missiles in service during the 1991 Gulf War.

I now know that Professor Lewis’s evidence was incorrect, because the restricted document became obsolete on 27 March 1984, long before the Gulf War. The document used on ALARM was an unclassified MSDS specification with the reference 1011-00435. This information was not put before my jury, and it would certainly have had a profound effect if my jury had heard that the document used on ALARM was unclassified, and therefore officially judged to be not sensitive.

The Police never interviewed any of the 16 people on the circulation list of the restricted document. The only conclusion that can be drawn from such unbelievable “incompetence” is that the Police were deliberately avoiding the possibility that those potential witnesses might give testimony damaging to the Prosecution case: that the restricted document was obsolete, and that the actual document used on the ALARM project was unclassified. This Police ploy ensured that it was impossible for me to obtain a fair trial, due to that missing evidence.

Until Professor Lewis appeared in the witness box, the Defence was given no warning that the restricted document might be related to ALARM, or that this document would take on a heightened significance at trial as being the only Official Secrets Act document found in my possession. As a result the Defence legal team did not seek an expert able to testify about ALARM, and I was denied the opportunity to prepare a proper defence against Professor Lewis’s surprise undisclosed evidence.

It now appears doubtful whether any of Professor Lewis’s “expert” opinions were correct about the restricted document, because he presented it as a document still in use in the 1990s, when it was in fact made obsolete in 1984.

The new evidence demonstrates that Dr Meirion Francis Lewis - as he then was - could not have been a credible expert witness, because he gave false and totally misleading evidence to the Court. Following on from my trial I note that Dr. Lewis became a Professor and was also awarded the CBE. One can only hope that these were not his rewards for giving perjured evidence at my trial.

02 December 2007

British ARRSE publicises my case

The ARmy Rumour SErvice (ARRSE) has done me a favour by publicising my case on their website, which has brought a flood of new visitors here to my blog. I had been disappointed with the ARRSE moderators reaction, when they banned me from their forum in August, but I am now grateful that these moderators have seen sense and decided to make an issue of my case.

ARRSE scores a home goal

Perhaps I am the brave one, for coming out and saying things under my own name. The ARRSE moderators hide behind their camouflage of anonymity, and snipe away in the belief that no one will ever know who they are.

I feel duty bound to point out that the ARRSE article about me makes certain factual errors:

1. It is suggested that I learnt the art of cleaning my cell. Anybody who knew me at HMP Full Sutton will know that I rarely did any cleaning in my cell. I was a guest of Her Majesty, and guests are not expected to clean their own rooms. Would you expect to stay in a hotel and also do the cleaning? No, there are prison officers available who can do this work.

2. It seems that ARRSE moderators believe I would have helped the prison chaplain. There was never a time in prison when I had any communication with a chaplain. Why would I help somebody that I believe is talking mumbo jumbo? I subscribe to the Richard Dawkins view on religion - I’m believer in science, not a believer in blind faith.

3. There seems to be some muddled thinking on another point. The claim is made against me: ‘he … decided to sell his soul for a pathetically small sum of money. To this day, he contends that is(sic) was a conspiracy that put him away, thus proving that Smith was only in it for the money.’ It seems rather contradictory, that it was a ‘pathetically small sum of money’, but that I ‘was only in it for the money’? This was not the main argument made by the Prosecution at my trial, where it was asserted that I was ideologically driven, which was of course nonsense.

4. The article goes on to talk about me as being a ‘foul communist’. It is true that I was a member of the CPGB, as well as the YCL, but I left those organisations at the end of 1975. Apparently, to the elephantine brain of an ARRSE moderator, a period of 32 years is like the blink of an eye, although to me this all seems a very long time ago, and I have certainly changed greatly in the meantime. Nonetheless, if our past activities are never allowed to leave us, then there will be a lot of people in ARRSE who would be embarrassed to have it publicised what they were up to some years ago, whether that be acting like drunken hooligans on a Saturday night, or some perverted sexual practice - you know the sorts of things, don’t you guys.

5. The ARRSE moderators refer to exhibits used to convict me, by saying that ‘very little of which was classified higher than Secret’ and they then go on to quote from information disclosed by the MoD during my Appeal, that ‘In the case of the other current weapon system, the detailed information contained in the document … should have been classified SECRET’.

There has been an attempt here to hype up the value of the information said to be in my possession. None of the exhibits were classified SECRET, or even CONFIDENTIAL. The only classification used on exhibits was RESTRICTED, which, as I’m sure you know (i.e. anyone who has worked with classified documents), is the lowest level of classification. In fact, it was only one classified document, ID No. 79481/PBH/BB/SO8 issued in 1982 and marked RESTRICTED, which the Prosecution used in their arguments about “sensitivity” - the document was claimed to have been used on the ALARM missile. Dr Meirion Francis Lewis claimed a link to ALARM during his testimony in court; he said this link was confirmed during a phone conversation with a friend of his at Marconi (a Technical Director there). The Technical Director, Reginald Humphryes, in turn, said he had been given this information by somebody working in that part of Marconi dealing with ALARM, a person whose name was never recorded. So, it was a chain of Chinese whispers, or hearsay evidence, which finally convicted me.

I have recently discovered that the evidence given by the MoD in 1995 - that the RESTRICTED document should have been classified SECRET - is a very strange thing to say, because in 1984 that document had been withdrawn from use. The document actually used on ALARM was marked UNCLASSIFIED, and so it seems the MoD need to explain why an UNCLASSIFIED document should have been marked SECRET? It would have made a significant impression on the jury at my trial to have been told the truth about that RESTRICTED document, No. 79481/PBH/BB/SO8.

6. The ARRSE article repeats the claim that I ‘sold information regarding the XN-715 radar fuse for the British WE177 free fall nuclear bomb’. This was never a part of my trial, and I have never been convicted of any offence involving my work at Thorn EMI. This claim against me originates in the 1995 Security Commission report on my case. Clearly, it was thought that the case would fail if brought to court; otherwise I would have faced that charge during my trial. We do not yet live in a totalitarian society where you can be simply declared guilty without a trial, although it would appear that ARRSE moderators believe they have been given the right to make such declarations of guilt.

7. I am being attacked for calling myself Gunner-smiff on the ARRSE forums. I fail to see how this is any serious matter. Everybody on the ARRSE forums call themselves by any name they choose, and all hide behind pseudo identities, as is quite common on most forums on the Internet. I never made any claims to have been a real “gunner”, and so my conscience is clear that I never tried to deceive anyone that I was somebody I wasn’t - I even revealed my true identity to those in the ARRSE chat room, who so vilely attacked me for speaking up for the truth.

8. I have been further criticised because I compared the Daniel James and Milos Stankovic cases. I do believe there are similarities between those cases, and Daniel has also been supported by his Army colleagues who worked with him. Anyone who tries to portray Daniel as a “spy”, or a “traitor”, obviously has not studied the details of his case. You can choose to believe the truth, or swallow the propaganda put out by the Prosecution side, but do not write off Daniel if you know nothing about him.

9. In referring to the set of witness statements from my trial, published on the Cryptome website, ARRSE says that they ‘have been heavily sanitised by Smith’. I fail to see what evidence ARRSE has that I have changed one word of those statements? In fact, it would be incredibly stupid of me to change those statements, since these are the evidence that I am currently working on with the Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC), to take my case back to the Court of Appeal.

If ARRSE find those witness statements hard to believe, then that is because my case was handled in so biased a way that it is difficult to see the evidence for spying within them. Just for the record, I decided to convert the statements into a MS Word document to: (a) make them easily searchable, and (b) make them more readable, because the originals are covered in my lawyers written notes, and the photocopies vary greatly in quality. I have no objection to sending copies of the originals to anyone who is particularly interested in any of them. I am sure that the version on Cryptome is accurate, and the only discrepancies are likely to be insignificant typos.


So, while I welcome the fact that ARRSE has decided to publicise details of my case, I would ask them to be a little more careful to stick to the facts, rather than increase the errors already attached to my story in the public domain. I hope ARRSE seriously check their facts, and that they also attach the same principle of accuracy to the use of weapons in theatres of war, as “friendly fire” seems to be a common cause of casualties in recent times.

I use the term “friendly fire” with good reason, because it appears that the ARRSE moderators want more than just to call me names. ARRSE moderators apparently want me dead, and seem to have issued a sort of ARRSE fatwa. Check out this email which I received on 29 November:

From: Enald Arbutss <justforthispostonarrse@yahoo.co.uk>
To: parellic [at] googlemail.com
Date: Nov 29, 2007 6:41 PM
Subject: Your Blog and ARRSE

Hello there Michael,

It’s always good to see a convicted criminal and traitor maintaining a steady air of innocence. It warms my heart to see that ultimately it's not about the politics, it's all about the money.

You may be interested to read that you now have your own entry on the ARRSE Wiki (here:
http://www.arrse.co.uk/wiki/Michael_John_Smith) which I am sure you will find accurate. It's certainly much better than that bland version on Wikipedia.

As long as you continue to peddle your tired and pathetic version of events, ARRSE will be there to confound you at every turn.

May I take this opportunity to wish you nothing but pain and I earnestly hope that the end of your days comes only after a prolonged period of incredible suffering.

Please die soon - it's all a filthy traitor like you deserves.

With no kind regards