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Shell Chief Ethics Officer Richard Wiseman Refutes Accusations


—–Original Message—–
From: John Donovan [mailto:[email protected]]
Sent: 21 September 2009 16:02
To: Wiseman, Richard RM SI-RDS-CCO
Cc: Raymond Fox

Dear Mr Wiseman

In March 2004 you sent a letter to Mr Ray Fox, the gentleman who lived next door to the Shell Terminal in Reading. As you may recall, Mr Fox alleges (and has extensive proof including expert opinion) that he and his family members were made ill by radioactive contamination, as a consequence of Shell activities at the terminal.


16 March 2004

Dear Mr Fox

Thank you for your email of the 10th March. No, you cannot have copies of the correspondence in question. Since you constantly threaten litigation and indeed on several occasions have engaged firms of solicitors and referred to advice recently taken from American lawyers, the correspondence in question is clearly privileged.

I am afraid you have completely misunderstood the material you have obtained. Shell has never been involved in “atomic” or “nuclear” research at the Thornton site or elsewhere in the U.K. Between 1953 and 1966 it conducted research for the U.K. Atomic Energy Authority. The research was only ever concerned with developing lubricants for nuclear power plants. It involved subjecting lubricants to controlled emissions of low-level Gamma radiation in a small secure purpose built laboratory at Thornton. The work was conducted strictly in accordance with the Radio Active Substances Acts of 1948 and 1960 and other relevant legislation. The site was properly registered and regularly inspected. We have nothing to hide – we have never made a secret of this research programme. Indeed, the work was described in the publicly available brochure “50 Years of Thornton Research Centre” which was produced in 1990.

Yours sincerely

Shell International Limited

Richard Wiseman
U.K. General Counsel

The statement that “Shell has never been involved in “atomic” or “nuclear” research at the Thornton site or elsewhere in the U.K.” appears to be at odds with allegations made by former Shell employee James Featherstone, in a letter he sent on 2 May 2009 to Detective Inspector Nick Sumner c/o Homicide & Serious Crime Command at New Scotland Yard.

Mr Featherstone also lodged the letter on 14 May 2009 with Judge Joel A. Pisano of The United States District Court District of New Jersey in connection with the Royal Dutch/Shell securities fraud case.

Here are some extracts from the letter…

The first poisoning occurred during my oil products research at Shen Research Ltd, Thornton Research Centre, via, long-term contact, 1961-1968, with Shell Special Boiling Point Solvents, SBP 2 & 3, containing appreciable amounts of Benzene, C6H6/homologues. My research confirming my exposure is reported with data in the possession of Shell Research Ltd.

However, an undisclosed factor was radionuclides emanating from a Cobalt 60 Reactor on the Thornton site used for development of lubricants for the British Nuclear Industry ; cutting fluids for machining uranium fuel rods and lubricants for hostile environments in Calder Hall, Britain’s first nuclear power station. My Prescribed Industrial Disease was established after a Shell admission of benzene, C6H6 contact, via, Shell SBP solvents used for de-oiling engine parts for examination and used in oil products development. HMI of Factories was able to confirm benzene content of SBP solvents, via, Shell Stanlow Refinery Operating Reports and the belated Shell admission was sufficient for a DHSS Medical Tribunal to find a disablement for life assessment of the prescribed industrial disease, PD7 in my case without a full hearing and examination of witnesses.

Furthermore, experiments by Senior Shell Scientist Andrew Butlin carried out at my request in the laboratories where I worked confirmed that use of SBP solvents created a dangerous working environment with over 25 ppm benzene, C6H6. A dangerlevel for benzene which was subsequently reduced to only 7 ppm exposure.

The Shell Cobalt 60 Reactor at Thornton was dismantled in an unauthorised manner which fact was discovered by an investigating journalist, John Dyer, of 14 Barrington Road, Liverpool. [ See ]

Furthermore, the Shell “50 years Thornton Research Centre” publication subsequently confirms the existence of the Cobalt 60 Reactor at ThorntonResearch Centre mentioned by John Dyer and its location in relation to my places of work at Thornton Research Centre. I understand the Dutch police investigated similar mal practice in Shell sites in the Netherlands.

After the DHSS Medical Tribunal made a determination of Industrial disease in my favour, Shell wished to settle my personal injuries claim on a fuilliabitity and “generous judge” basis. In the mean-time, I completed retraining for the LL.B degree necessary to continue my career with Shell. The National Insurance legislation provided a retraining scheme which applied in my circumstances but after inter LLB, Shell sponsored my retraining full-time.

The “settlement was in the hands of lawyers” and my subsequent investigation shows this to be a fraudulent settlement, due to non disclosure of a relevant Shell Contributory Pension Trust Deed providing full disability and partial disability pensions. Moreover, medical information on the true damage to my DNA and genetic and carcinogenic effects of the poisons was withheld by the haematologist, Professor Sir David Weatherall consulted at the University of Liverpool after providing my blood and bone marrow samples for the purpose. This harvesting of my vital medical data was not disclosed. Professor Weatherall has subsequently advised the information is with the University of Uverpool.

Behaviour by the trade union solicitors. Thompson, Manchester and counsel instructed, did not protect their client interests and non disclosure of the Shell Pension Trust Deeds and medical non disclosure of injury damage to my bone marrow rendered consultations with actuaries and the entire negotiation by the trade union solicitor Thompson fraudulent. Shell reneged on the settlement they agreed with my former solicitor, D P Roberts of Birkenhead, who agreed a change of solicitor to Thompsons a trade union solicitor at my request, because of their expertise on employment with Shell Group suitable for disabled staff with occupational disease ; their pensions expertise utilising actuaries Duncan Fraser & Co ; medical expertise with occupational health experts like Professor Weatherall and disablement resettlement officer, Department of Employment.

During legal negotiations and awaiting reassignment after graduation, my career with Shell Research Ltd was terminated with a contrived redundancy, after an unsuitable offer of continued employment lias an Engineer” with “continued exposure to benzene, specified dangerous in the Directive 67/548/EECwith Shell Expro Ltd, London. Please note that the alleged “offer of job swap/transfer to Shell Expro Ltd” was only made by Shell Research Ltd and a job offer was not made to me by Shell Expro Ltd who were notified of my disability at two interviews in the Shel1Centre, London.

Shell Expro Ltd staff thanked me for my candour. Negotiations only continued on a fraudulent basis and by threats made to induce withdrawal of my pending legal action in an Employment Tribunal for reinstatement in accord with the Disabled Persons Employment Acts 1944 & 1958 with liability of criminal sanctions for Shell ; but while Shell continued to suppress the Shell Pensions Trust Deeds describing full and partial disability pensions, and Shell suppressed full medical effects of my exposures to benzene and to radionuclides emanating from the Cobalt 60 reactor work at Thornton which had no warning sign.

See, Shell Research Ltd, IRR385, April 1967. author, DC White et al. “An investigation into the potential toxicity hazard of gasolines containing high concentration of benzene”. The results show clearly the real dangers to the public of contact with dangerous concentrations of benzene C6H6, that is over 7ppm, while re-fuelling cars with petrol. Benzene is cumulative in its toxic effects, crosses the placenta and gives rise to chronic poisoning which causes death and disease. This Shell report was notified to Minister Ben Bradshaw MP, Local Environmental Quality Minister,. DEFRAand to Dr Alister Vale, National Poisons Information Service, City Hospital, Birmingham, BH18 7QH. Also, Shell Report IRR385 supplied to the University of Liverpool and the Royal Liverpool University Hospital to be included in my medical records and made available for the benefit of a driver of a petrol tanker delivering petrol to UK garages, who was suffering a toxic anaemia treated by the Royal Liverpool University Teaching Hospital. Shell IRR385 Report supplied to QBD, high court, London and to the District Court, Family Division, Derby Square, Liverpool, for consideration in legal proceedings.

Is Mr Featherstone wrong in his assertions?


From: [email protected]
Date: 21 September 2009 17:17:49 BST
To: [email protected]
Cc: [email protected]

Dear Mr Donovan

Shell has never had a nuclear reactor at Thornton or elsewhere in the UK.  The references to a Cobalt 60 Reactor are entirely erroneous.  There was a Cobalt 60 source at Thornton, as has been repeatedly stated.  When it was no longer used it was disposed of entirely in accordance with the statutory requirements.  Mr Dyer’s serious allegations have been properly investigated and found to be without foundation.  He was repeatedly asked some time ago to make his evidence available to the authorities but has not done so.

Yours sincerely
Richard Wiseman

Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer
Royal Dutch Shell plc
Shell Centre, London SE1 7NA

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