By John Donovan
The investigation of allegations made by a Shell whistleblower company OSSL, of alleged Shell sponsored corruption of the Irish police, appears to be in a shambles following ill-judged on-the-record comments by the officer leading the inquiry, Johan Groenewald.
The relevant extraordinary email correspondence with me can be viewed here.
In the exchanges, which became heated on his part, Mr Groenewald denounced OSSL as being untrustworthy, rubbished and disregarded vital evidence, issued a threat against me and denied that he tore up (and has apparently disregarded) statements given to a senior Garda officer by OSSL directors. At some point he seems to have lost his impartiality.
His reckless comments seem to have undermined and preempted the pending publication of his findings.
Realising the significance of what he had put in writing, I gave Mr Groenewald the opportunity to retract his comments. He declined to do so after claiming that his superiors were aware of his comments. All of this can be verified by reading the correspondence.
Some Irish citizens might conclude in the light of his comments that a cover-up is in the pipeline.
I am bringing this latest development in the scandals surrounding the Irish Justice Department, the Garda and the Garda Ombudsman to the attention of every Irish TD. A Garda Commissioner and the Irish Justice Minister Alan Shatter have already resigned.
OSSL allegations arose from its role as a Shell Mr Fixit company trying on Shell’s instructions to smooth the rocky path of the long delayed highly controversial Shell led Corrib Gas Project by handing out sweeteners to landowners and the cops. The Irish news media received free wine packs directly from Shell as part of the corruption policy.
Corruption is nothing new to Shell. e.g.
Shell to pay $48m Nigerian bribe fine: Daily Telegraph 4 November 2010
These companies, including Shell, admitted they “approved of or condoned the payment of bribes on their behalf in Nigeria and falsely recorded the bribe payments made on their behalf as legitimate business expenses in their corporate books, records and accounts”.
SHELL IN BRIBERY FINE: Daily Express 6 November 2010
Shell must pay a $30million “criminal penalty” over charges it paid $2million to a sub-contractor “with the knowledge that some or all of the money” would be used to bribe Nigerian officials to allow equipment into the country without paying duty. Shell, which has not admitted guilt, must pay a further $18million to repay profits and interests.