“It would indeed be ironic if the resources of one investigative arm of the U.S. government has been used by Shell in an attempt to impede the Shell/Gale Norton corruption investigation being carried out by another investigative arm of the U.S. government.”
By John Donovan
In December 2009, following an analysis of Shell internal communications and documents supplied to us by Shell in response to a SAR application under the Data Protection Act, it became clear that Shell had once again resorted to cloak and dagger activity directed against us.
Reuters revealed that Royal Dutch Shell had asked an anti-fraud agency “NCFTA”, to target our website – royaldutchshellplc.com – on the basis that “There will be no attempt to do anything visible to Donovan”. The article said that NCFTA, the US National Cyber Forensics and Training Alliance in Pittsburgh, did not respond to emails or telephone calls from Reuters on the subject.
In subsequent Shell communications supplied in response to a further SAR application, NCFTA was identified by Shell as being the National Cyber Forensics and Training Alliance, a high tech investigation organization funded and staffed partly by the FBI.
There is nothing new in Shell having a close connection with cloak and dagger organizations. Some 90 years ago, Shell recruited the then newly retired head of British Military Intelligence, Major General Sir George MacDonogh. Shell “Corporate Affairs Security” (CAS), the current Shell in-house spook organisation, exposed as a key player in the current undercover operation against us, is headed by Ian McCredie OBE, another former MI6 senior officer. He is Royal Dutch Shell plc Vice-President for Security.
What prompted such attention and activity, mobilizing CAS and a specialist resource of the FBI? The latter move obviously suggested a US connection. Was it because Tom Purves, the unloved Shell Motiva VP had been the subject of leaks to the Donovans? Or was the reason more sinister?
During the same period, another investigative arm of the U.S. federal government was already moving forward with an investigation of alleged corruption relating to Shell Oil General Counsel Gale Norton, the former Secretary of the Interior, whose department awarded Shell three potentially lucrative oil shale prospecting licenses. This was prior to her joining Shell. Norton was appointed as Interior Secretary by President George W. Bush whose father, President George Bush, another oil man, had enjoyed a business relationship with Shell through his company, Zapata Offshore.
Our reputation as the worlds leading source of Shell insider information has spread far and wide. Hence it is perhaps no surprise that we were approached by the federal investigators carrying out the corruption probe (and a Los Angeles Times reporter who broke the story about the corruption investigation). With the help of our network of Shell insiders, we supplied confidential Shell documents to assist the investigation.
Had Shell Oil also recognized our potential as an intermediary and source of Shell inside information – and the threat this posed? Was this the real reason for Shell’s mobilization of internal and external spying resources?
It would indeed be ironic if the resources of one investigative arm of the U.S. government has been used by Shell in an attempt to impede the Shell/Gale Norton corruption investigation being carried out by another investigative arm of the U.S. government.