In part two of Mr Whyte's fight for justice, we review the decision of the tribunal headed by Mr H Lederman.
The decision of the appeal was to dismiss the appeal. This decision is a shocking response and a disgraceful way to treat a Veteran who performed his duty for queen and country.
Extracts of the report are as follows:
The full report can be viewed by clicking here.
In response to the report, Mr Whyte responded to the report with the following comments:
STATEMENT OF APPEAL – DAVID W WHYTE v SECRETARY OF STATE
CASE; CAF/2237/2018 - 11 March 2019
1. I wish to start this case with the statement made by the Late Judge Stubbs in his judgement, dated 7 May 2013 at paragraph 492 which reads: “We consider that if Servicemen served in forward positions on Christmas Island shortly after the detonation it may well have increased their exposure to ionising radiation.
2. It would appear, that Mr Lederman did not take this statement into consideration when arriving at his decision. Had he done so, he would have realised that I entered the precise point, known as Ground Zero, two hours after the detonation of both Pennant and Burgee Atomic Bombs. Had Mr Lederman examined my ‘Court Bundle’ of documents, he would have learnt that I had, in addition to my Radiation film badge, a QFE Dosimeter, which gave a reading of 5 r/h (50 mSv) for each entry. Once these dosimeters were handed over to the authorities, and logged at the decontamination centre, all documentation referring to them appears to have disappeared.
3. I also wish to refer to the statement by the UK Government, to the Court of Human Rights at Strasbourg in 1998 during the case of McGinley/Egan v UK. Paragraph 100 of the judgement reads, ‘The Court recalls that the Government have asserted that there was no pressing National security reason for retaining information relating to radiation levels on Christmas Island following the tests.
4. Mr Lederman does not refer to this in his statement. Does the Government mean there are no restrictions to obtaining this information, or is this an admission that they have destroyed all incriminating evidence?
5. There is adequate proof in my Court bundle, showing that many lies have been expressed by the Authorities, regarding this affair. Did Mr Lederman miss these entries, or did he reject this proof of interference, by the authorities in the facts relating to this case.
6. There are many facts Mr Lederman appears to have overlooked, or miss-understood, within my Court Bundle, for example, page 215-217 shows the Ministry of Defence records, show only three radiation film badges were not returned, one for Pennant and two for Burgee. Yet pages 209R and 210 show a total of 20 badges not returned from the TSFG (Technical services Forward Group). 12 for Pennant and 8 for Burgee. Had these film badges actually gone missing, there would have been an immediate inquiry.
7. Mr Lederman obviously by-passed pages 203R last paragraph, and 204 1st paragraphs, which clearly show the purpose of the issue of these film badges. Page 208R shows the efforts made by the Ministry of defence to disguise this information.
8. The false information, in 208R was recorded on the 29 April 2003, the correct information, made by the then Secretary of state for Defence, Mr Derek Twigg on the 13 March 2008.
9. These are just a few of the items overlooked by Mr Lederman. Much can be said about his decision of the Tribunal, some of which I will attempt to address now.
10. Para 7. Mr Lederman states, ‘The Tribunal Concentrates on those issues which, in its view, go to the heart of the War Pensions Claims’.
The only issue that the Tribunal should concentrate on is the true levels of radiation which permeated Christmas Island during, and after the tests.
11. Par 10. Refers to page 78, of the Court bundle. This states, my two radiation film badges, two Dosimeter readings and my blood count, taken after the tests were completed, are all missing. It is my opinion that this constitutes incompetence in the Authorities. It is my belief that some of these questions could be answered if the ‘Directions’ issued by the Late Judge Stubbs and Judge Horrocks had been adhered to (page 231R.
12. Para 11. The Doctor states that infertility could not be caused by 2.6 mSv of radiation. The radiation levels at Christmas Island were far higher than 2.6.
13. Para 12. It is correct! As I have always stated, I received a minimum of 250 mSv of radiation during my 5 hours at Ground Zero, 2 ½ hours for Pennant, and 2 ½ hours for Burgee. The estimated 894 mSv is the estimated total received during my tour of Christmas Island.
14. Para 17. It was indicated that at some stage, in the past, I may have had access to Legal Aid. Mr Lederman should, perhaps be made aware that Legal Aid, given to Criminals and Illegal Immigrants, is denied to all Nuclear Veterans when dealing with matters pertaining to the nuclear tests. Mr Lederman states further enquiries will be made to see if items 1 – 4 are obtainable. The original ‘Compendium’ of radiation film badges and QFE Dosimeters is certainly available. A feeble excuse was made that the document was scattered around a table. This item was given in ‘Directions’ by the Late Judge Stubbs and again by Judge Horrocks. This item should have been presented to Mr Lederman on the 5 June 2018. The same account goes for the production of Mr R Cockerill at Court.
15. Para 19 (page 7) The purpose of requesting Mr Cockerill to attend for cross examination, was to discover whether he made up the radiation levels against my name on his own, or whether there was another source that gave him the radiation levels.
16. Para 28 & 31. Mr Lederman obviously did not check the facts regarding the nuclear experiments. Both Pennant and Burgee were detonated above the Southern end of Christmas Island, not 700 km south East.
17. Para 37. Makes reference to a Medical examination report. Once again, I must reiterate that documents 224 and 224R are forged. Pages 221 and 221R show examples of my signature. The Veterans Agency were notified 2013, but, they took no action to remove this offending document from my Court Bundle. Any evidence given, using this document must be disqualified. Mr Lederman appears to doubt my account when he states: ‘That report indicated the appellant had no serious illnesses’. It should be noted that the height recorded was 61 ¼ inches and weight 95 pounds in the document dated 22 November 1951, this was prior to my enlistment. On the 21st February 1952, after enlistment, my height was 62 ½ inches, and weight 104 pounds. On the 15 October 1954 (having reached the age of 18) my height was 67 inches and weight 126 pounds. I suggested that the Ministry of Defence obtain the services of a writing expert, regarding my signature. But they refused to do so!
18. Para 40 to 43. I fail to see any sense, or reason, why Mr Lederman comments: ‘The appellant does not directly challenge the significant parts of the 1961 report’. The entire document is a forgery and I refute any comments to the contrary. I therefore challenge the entire document.
19. Para 44. I do not believe: I KNOW, the Veterans UK and the Ministry of defence are withholding evidence. The ‘Original’ Compendium of radiation film badges and QFE Dosimeters for Operation Grapple ZULU is a good example. It took me over 4 years, and only after the intervention of a First Tier Tribunal, to obtain information to a graph (page 212) Mr Andrew Tranham, lied about this Freedom of Information request and called it ‘Vexatious.
20. Para 47. What evidence is inconsistent with exposure to high or moderate levels of ionising radiation? Am I being called a liar? If this is the case, then I must demand the production of the ‘Original Compendium’, not a copy, of the radiation film badges and QFE Dosimeters issued for Operation Grapple ZULU.
21. Para 48. Perhaps Mr Lederman should obtain all of the documents, especially my dental records. On enlistment into the Royal Air Force the medical showed NAD for the upper and lower jaw. NAD stands for NO APPARENT DISEASE. I have a dental check every year!
22. Para 49. Once again, it appears that my honesty is being questioned by Mr Lederman. I was raised as a Christian, in a Christian Country, and obey all of the Commandments. I am not a LIAR! These radiation badges were in use 24 hours per day and 7 days per week for each calendar month, for 12 years. This totalled a total dose rate of 14.19 mSv. Equivalent to 1.35 mSv, per year. This radiation dose bears no reflection, on the radiation levels received at Christmas Island.
23. Para 50. I did not carry out the home fertility test in the 1960s; it was the 1980/1990s.
24. Para 51. I was wearing F/F/ dentures when I entered the Royal Air Force and was examined by a Medical Officer – not a Dental Officer. The fact that I was wearing F/F dentures was recorded on my dental card. Mr Lederman, would be advised, to obtain this document, rather than making scurrilous and unfounded comments.
25. Para 63. Once again, Mr Lederman uses 1964 as the date I did the fertility test. I must stress that the fertility tests were conducted in the 1980/90s. 1964 was the year, that I had all of my teeth removed, due to dental Sepsis. Once again, supply me with the evidence requested, and I will prove my point. I received far more radiation than the 2.4 mSv allotted by Mr Cockerill.
26. Para 65. The Tribunal is miss-informed. The M-Band Cytogenetic blood test would prove the levels of radiation my body has received. Why would our under-funded NHS refuse to carry out this procedure, on payment? Had this test been given in the 1980’s this matter would now be finished. There are also the results of the 19 samples of nuclear veteran’s blood sent to the NETHERLANDS for a cytogenetic blood test.
27. Para 67. Judge Blake gave his Judgement on the facts presented to him by the Ministry of Defence. These were lies; I am being denied the evidence to prove this case.
28. Para 73. Dr Braidwood clarified the situation, when she stated (7) ‘A reasonable doubt is not raised by reliable evidence, that infertility would have been caused, by this small amount of radiation’. Had Dr Braidwood been given the true levels of radiation, the results would have been different.
29. Para 76. Mr Lederman is incorrect when he states, ‘The Appellant referred to photograph at page (222) as what he said was a photograph of the tents in ‘B’ Site, blown over after each of the detonations.
This is False! I have only made reference to Operation Pennant.
30. Para 81. The QFE Dosimeter was only designed to read up, to 5 r/h (50 mSv). They were at their maximum, of 5 r/h, after both Pennant and Burgee. Burgee was almost 50% more powerful than PENNANT.
31. Para 84. The bottom of page 203R shows the truth regarding my radiation film badges. 10459 was a routine film badge, issued for working at Ground Zero, prior to any detonation taking place. 10560 were issued specifically, for Operation Pennant on the 22 August, and 11256 were issued specifically, for Operation Burgee on the 23 September 1958. Any other suggestion is a blatant lie.
Where Mr Lederman gets the impression that I have criticised all the readings recited in this letter (203) defies belief. I stated that the reading of 1 r/h quoted as the maximum at Ground Zero was false. When we look at Pennant on page 210R at 1030 hours, this is 1 ½ after detonation, the reading is 1.52 r/h (15.2 mSv), and performing the same operation for Burgee on page 211 we get a reading of 1.87 (18.7 mSv)
The instruments showing these readings were housed in the bunker 203/203R with a minimum half value thickness of THREE. The instruments were wired (underground) up to receptors a safe distance from Ground Zero where they were recorded.
32. Para 85. This astounds me; reference is again made regarding my honesty and integrity. Perhaps Mr Lederman should read the letter (213), rather than making unfounded remarks. This is in fact, an apology, for denying me access to information for over 4 years. Mr Andrew Tranham, (who works for the Ministry of Defence in the Freedom of Information department had refused, on numerous occasions over a period of 4 years to supply information requested. When Mr Tranham denied all knowledge of where this information was held, I contacted the Information Commissioner and a First Tier Tribunal was convened. The Judge, Chris Ryan, was an excellent Judge who carried out his task in a totally unbiased manner. He should be commended. The documents which I requested, were found, and sent to me.
33. Para 86. The copies that Mr Lederman refers to were obtained from the AWE after a Freedom of Information, First Tier Tribunal. This is listed above in Paragraph 85.
34. Para 88. My documents were complete. I presented a written statement, which I had prepared for an expected Court Appearance. This was not additional evidence.
35. Para89. How does my statement, which is fact, that it was only AWRE personnel who were supplied with protective clothing and respirators mean that my ability to give a balanced picture of events had been diminished. I called this blatant discrimination.
36. Para 90. It would appear that the Tribunal is taking sides, with the Ministry of Defence instead of remaining neutral. It is not only the blood count which has gone missing. My 2 radiation film badges, the readings of my two QFE Dosimeters, my hospital records and the records from the decontamination centre for the 22 August and 23 September 1958 are all missing. Every item dealing with personal radiation levels has been hidden or destroyed.
37. Para 109. States the Tribunal had ‘Real Concerns about the accuracy’.
Most of my facts, regarding the lies perpetrated by the Ministry of Defence had the proof attached. The proof, requested from the Ministry of Defence is not forthcoming.
38. Para 110. The issue relating to radiation levels has not been effectively addressed, by the Blake judgement. Judge Blake can only make a judgement on the facts given to him, and the facts were given by the Ministry of Defence who have shown themselves to be inveterate liars.
39. Mr Lederman has made no references to the Health and safety regulations dated July 1958. They state that there must be no eating, drinking and smoking in the forward areas. We were living in the forward area and we had our own cookhouse and NAAFI where food drink and tobacco could be purchased. These regulations also stated that all vehicles leaving ground zero should be de-contaminated, this was never done, consequently, radioactive dust was spread the length and breadth of Christmas Island.
40. Having spent almost 17 years as a Prison Officer at HMP Pentonville, I have visited many criminal Courts and have found there is a high degree of honesty, trust worthiness and they are beyond reproach. Unfortunately I cannot say the same, regarding the First Tier tribunals which Service Personnel have to attend.
41. It is a well known fact, that the Armed Forces are governed by the Queen’s Regulations. I defy any member of the Ministry of Defence, to show me any section of Queen’s regulations that permits service members to be used as experimental human guinea pigs against their will.
42. My case was not heard fully. It is my intention to show that there are inveterate liars in the Ministry of Defence who have shown a degree of cowardice, by failing to produce the true records, showing the levels of radiation that permeated Christmas Island.
43. It would appear that the evidence given by the ‘Disorganised and Illogical Veterans UK’ (Mr Lederman’s comments, not mine) are considered over the reasoned defence of the appellant.
44. No comments were raised regarding all the documents, showing levels of radiation had been concealed or wilfully and negligently destroyed.
45. This saga has gone on for over 60 years. Any Private Company committing offences of this calibre would be taken to task, and their employees compensated.
46 This was indeed, a case of Gross Negligence, lacking a duty of care to personnel under their Command. Tampering with evidence and forgery are serious criminal offences made worse by lying.
47. This is a shameful way to treat Loyal Members of the Armed Forces who were prepared to sacrifice their lives in order to defend their Country.
48. The United Kingdom is a Country that continually harangues others for their lack of
human rights, yet they turn a blind eye to their loyal service personnel being used as experimental human guinea pigs against their knowledge, in order to evaluate the problems that may result should we ever get involved in a nuclear war.
49. It is my belief that the Ministry of Defence must now be held in contempt of Court, for failing to produce these documents and that all nuclear Veterans and their disabled off-spring should now be paid punitive compensation.
50. I could say more, regarding this fanciful attribute by Mr Lederman, but feel that this is sufficient for the time being.
Christmas Island 1958