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Shell’s dilemma in denying death threats against its Corrib employees

Email from John Donovan to Republic of Ireland Chief Police Commissioner Fachtna Murphy

From: John Donovan <[email protected]>
Date: 26 October 2010 21:35:00 GMT+01:00
To: [email protected]
Cc: [email protected]
Subject: Corrib Gas Project Alleged Death Threats

For the Attention of Republic of Ireland Chief Police Commissioner Fachtna Murphy

Dear Commissioner Murphy

For the sake of transparency, I have printed below a copy of my email on this subject to Richard Wiseman at Royal Dutch Shell.

If Shell had said that the internal emails were a hoax, then I would not have contacted you at all.

I can only guess that Shell decided that it was best not to reply, because even if they denied any knowledge of the alleged death threats, then it would stand out like  a sore thumb if they did not go on to deny the espionage operation (which they cannot do) and the authenticity of the leaked emails (which they are also unable to do). Since the latter two issues are matters of fact, Shell was faced with a real dilemma and decided to say nothing.

I do not know if death threats were made. I do know that the death threats were reported to me in writing by the parties supplying authentic Shell internal emails and I have ample evidence to prove it.

I also know that there is a dark side to Shell, especially in regards to the hiring of contractor “security” staff (which in our experience are little more than thugs), and so called “enquiry agents” (who are actually undercover operatives).

The bullying behaviour of Shell security guards in London received the full backing of Mr Wiseman at about this time last year, when we had a team distributing leaflets at Shell Centre in an entirely peaceful, legal and proper manner. Again, I have the email correspondence as proof.

John Donovan

From: John Donovan <[email protected]>
Date: 25 October 2010 09:57:08 GMT+01:00
To: [email protected]
Cc: [email protected], Lorna Siggins <[email protected]>
Subject: Alleged Death Threats made to Shell Corrib Employees

Dear Mr Wiseman

I have printed below an email I intend to send to Garda Commissioner Fachtna Murphy.

I have also printed for your information the related Shell internal emails. If you inform me by tomorrow evening that the emails are not authentic, then we will not publish them and will revise or cancel the email to Fachtna Murphy as we deem appropriate.

If I receive no response by then, I will assume that they are authentic and will proceed with our plans.

If you need more time to check the matter with colleagues, that will not be a problem. In that event kindly let me know when we can reasonably expect a verdict on authenticity. Not that we have any doubt on the matter, but we always prefer for Shell to have the opportunity to confirm or deny, or make a comment.

I have copied this email to Lorna Siggins who has covered the Corrib Gas Project for several years at The Irish Times and recently published her book: “Once Upon a Time in the West: The Corrib Gas Controversy”. It seems that the title may have been rather more appropriate then she anticipated.

John Donovan


Reported death threats against Shell Corrib employees

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