THE REAL STORY ABOUT JOHN FASHANU'S SO
CALLED PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR
by George Noah
Monday 27 August 2000
|The man with many
identities, his links with the Scientology organization, his recruitment of John
Fashanu & his intrigues with the Nigerian government in his bid to destroy Bob
David Lee (aka Robert Clarke aka
Ron Christopher), whose real name is David Lebeau, is a private investigator who has
worked for the Scientology organization for at least eight years. For the purpose of this
report, we shall refer to the investigator as David Lee. After he was handed the project
of destroying, Bob Minton, the retired American investment banker, the Scientology
organization is hell bent on destroying, Lee's first task was to research into Minton's
past to find out where he could be vulnerable. Lee soon found out that Minton's company
once did a debt buy back operation for the Central Bank of Nigeria between 1988 - 1993.
The private investigator/cum Scientology agent immediately went to work with the hope of
digging up something unpleasant about Minton. For three years he compiled a dossier on
Minton. These were the years Fashanu was later to claim, he spent his own money
investigating those who looted Nigeria's treasury!
David Lee and Elliot
is that Lee personally compiled the ''Fashanu Report'' and equally placed John Fashanu on
his payroll and not the other way round as the former footballer has been
Through recommendations especially
from another Scientologist, Chief
Rilwanu Lukman, who claims
to be a devout Muslim, Lee recruited Fashanu to spearhead the assault on Minton.
Journalists who interviewed Fashanu on the debt buy back deal are unanimous in their views
that Fashanu could not hold any intelligent discussion on the report he claims he put
Lee who is Fashanu's boss, is extremely cagey about being identified as a
Scientologist, lest his cover is revealed.
Lee behind an
"Arnie Lerma" Mask
This was why both men failed to
appear at the public forum on the debt
buy back deals organized by the Nigerian Democratic Movement at Howard
University, Washington DC, two months ago. They both claimed to have been advised
not to appear by their lawyers! Yet both men had craved media attention for the debt buy
back scheme. Lee was always at the background whilst Fashanu hopped from one media house
to another. Indeed, Lee was aware that former Scientology members were to attend the
public forum. Hence his decision to abscond. As for Fashanu, he must have succumbed to his
cerebral deficiencies and had decided not to embarrass himself or his paymasters.
Having recruited Fashanu, thought to be an ideal candidate for the job at the time, Lee
devised a media plan in April this year, to give the ''Fashanu Report'' the required
publicity blitz. He prepared a question and answer document and both men went to work.
Within two weeks, the media began to take interest. The Nigerian debt buyback scheme soon
became headline news in several London publications including; Africa Confidential, The
Times, The Voice, New Nation and The Mirror. Shortly after, the Nigerian media followed
|Lee ensured that
Fashanu was placed under surveillance. Fashanu on the other hand tried to outwit Lee by
acquiring new fixed network and mobile phones to make discreet telephone calls.
It is believed that Fashanu had
considered quitting the project, due to the scrutiny of his credibility and his motives,
but he appears incapable of doing so, because of the dossier Lee has on him.
|Sometime in May, Lee
shocked Professor Bolaji Aluko in his Howard University office by playing back a
conversation Fashanu had with Ned Nwoko, a member of the House of Representatives.
Lee was at that time on the
verge of abandoning Fashanu because the ex footballer was becoming a liability. He felt it
was a high wire strategy to pin all his three year work on a man whose credibility was
being eroded by the day and confided in Aluko that Fashanu could not be trusted. He
said Fashanu was like a lose cannon. Fashanu had approached the Abachas with the aim of
extorting money from them claiming the ''Fashanu Report'' had information that showed they
stole Nigeria's money. The Abachas wanted Fashanu to substantiate his claims, but the
former footballer never went past that stage because he never had that information in the
first instance. Fashanu had also ''recruited'' Ned Nwoko as someone from the Presidency
who could facilitate the prosecution of Minton. Lee was to find out from his secret
taping of Fashanu and Nwoko, that Nwoko was on his own and was not working for the
Sensing that the Fashanu angle had outlived its usefulness, and that the ex footballer was
more of a liability than an asset, Lee began work on plan B. In June when President
Obasanjo went to Switzerland, Lee and his group were on his trail.
|With the help of
Lukman, Lee was able to meet Obasanjo for about 30 minutes. Lee later said he was so
surprised about the lack of security around Obasanjo. ''They (security agents) did not
even frisk me before I met the President'' Lee later told Aluko.
It was during the meeting with
Obasanjo that Lee brought up the Minton issue. After that meeting, Nigeria at attempted to
press charges against Minton. But it is believed the government is reconsidering its move
because independent lawyers have counseled that Minton has no case to answer. One source
said several lawyers had rummaged through the ''Fashanu Report'' and thought the country
could end up with eggs on its face if the case was taken any further.
Another inside source said the government was advised that the ''Fashanu Report'' did not
prove Minton had committed any offence and that the whole controversy was being
spearheaded by the Scientology organization in its bid to embarrass Minton. They also
proffered the following advise; that the Nigerian Senate had claimed in its report that
the debt buy back deal in question was transparently executed and that the companies Lee
and his group claimed was owned by Minton in defrauding Nigeria was actually owned 100 per
cent by the Central Bank of Nigeria; that Minton's debt buy back scheme had saved Nigeria
about $5 billion and that Nigeria had demonstrated financial engineering in reducing its
debt at the expense of the nation's creditors.
David Lee on
officials have gone cold in their liaison with Lee and Fashanu, having realized Lee's
motives, the futility of the case against Minton, and that Lee is a man of
Sources said Lee attempted to see
Obasanjo in London last week through the Nigeria High Commission, but was given a cold
shoulder. It is believed that Lee has returned to the drawing board to devise another
method of attack against Minton.
From 1993 onwards, Lee ensured that Minton lost his privacy. Lee and his group virtually
kept tabs on Minton's telephone conversations and travel itinerary. They compiled a list
of all those who knew Minton and approached them with the aim of gathering incriminating
information about him. They tailed Minton's daughters, wife, father and mother whether
they were in the United States or abroad. It was a sophisticated surveillance activity.
The Scientology organization did not spare a dime in ensuring that they trailed their
public enemy number one and his family. The idea was to intimidate and overwhelm
|But that approach
failed, because Minton vowed that he would continue to expose the totalitarian nature of
Scientology and to continue the funding for the civil case instituted against the cult
organization for the death in custody of one of their former members, named Lisa
The Scientology organization stand
to lose a whopping $100 million if they lose the case. Hence the need to force Minton to
abandon the funding for that litigation by all means necessary.
In 1998, Lee and his agents broke
into the London West End offices of Minton's business partner, Jeffrey Schmidt and
photocopied all the documents they found. The bulk of the documents found is what we now
know as the ''Fashanu Report''. Lee and Fashanu have declined to include Schmidt or Selwyn
Lewis, the two other business partners of Minton in the debt buyback scheme. This is
because Minton is the only target. The ''Fashanu Report'' is about 150 pages thick. On the
face of it, it looks impressive but the document on its own does not prove any criminal
act perpetrated by Minton. It only demonstrates that someone had taken great pains to do
some investigation and gather confidential documents.
Map of Nigeria
|Lee came up with the
$6 billion debt buy back scam to generate interest in his project. But no such money was
involved in the debt buy back deal. Indeed, the Central bank employed $1.1 billion to buy
back over $4 billion of Nigeria's debt.
But Fashanu and Lee
hopped from one media house to another, telling those who cared to listen that they had
uncovered about 6 billion dollars of Nigeria's money looted from the treasury. Fashanu
swore that his revelations had led to the freezing of some bank accounts in Europe, to the
tune of hundreds of millions of dollars. To date he and Lee has failed to provide details
of such accounts that had been frozen and where they had been frozen. Not a single name
has been linked to accounts that have been frozen through the Lee/Fashanu crusade. Not
one. Lee even claimed Minton's accounts had been frozen, but has declined to substantiate
his claims. Minton on the other hand had called the duo liars, insisting they were in
Back to David Lee and his background. Lee's base of operations has been in Los Angeles in
Scientology-owned offices. Notionally, he work for Omega Legal Services, or Omega Legal
Investigations, in Cedar Ridge, Colorado, where anyone can be a private investigator
no license is required. The business in Cedar Ridge is owned by a man named George Bacon.
This "business," however, is only someone's house with a phone line in it.
The first time David Lee surfaced
working for Scientology was in 1992, when he befriended a group of high-level Scientology
executives who had recently left the organization.
|Their names were Terri
and Fernando Gamboa, Janice and Paul Grady, Mark Fisher, and several others. They all
settled in Las Vegas and started a mortgage company together. These people knew him as
Terri Gamboa weds
He was sent in to keep tabs on them
to make sure they didn't cause any trouble for the organization. These people knew he was
a plant because of certain questions he asked and the way he behaved generally, but they
never let on to him that they knew. Their thinking was that it was better to know who was
being run in on them, thereby being able to control the situation, than to blow his cover
and risk having another person sent in that they might not spot.
Lebeau kept especially close tabs on Terri Gamboa, who had been the highest-ranking
executive and knew the most about Scientology's underhand activities. He went so far as to
travel with Terri and Fernando to Australia when they went there on a vacation. Lebeau was
reportedly in Las Vegas with these people for two years.
Ben Shaw & David
|He next appeared in
Seattle, Washington, in charge of a surveillance team that was set up under the control of
Scientology intelligence officer Ben Shaw in Los Angeles.
From 1994 until 1998 David Lee ran
this team, whose job was to monitor and report on the activities of two
former-Scientologists-turned-critics, Stacy and Vaughn Young. (Stacy's name is now
Under Lee's direction, activities against the Youngs were calculated to destroy their
reputations, get them put in prison, and get Stacy incarcerated in a mental institution.
The Young's' trash was stolen repeatedly, as evidenced by many phone calls from local
businesses advising them that their trash envelopes with their names on them, were
overflowing in the garbage cans.
Both David Lee and Eugene Ingram, another Scientology-hired private investigator, went
door-to-door in the Young's' neighborhood, spreading negative stories about them and
passing out photographs.
"newsletter" was placed on the doorsteps of everyone in the Young's'
neighborhood. This "newsletter" contained negative reports accusing the Young's'
of pornography, child abuse and more.
One of the men on the surveillance team later quit in disgust and contacted Bob Minton to
tell him what the team had done. He said they had parabolic microphones on the Youngs'
house twenty-four hours a day so that they could tape record all of their conversations.
The tapes were sent down every day to Ben Shaw.
The Youngs were in the process of establishing a sanctuary for lost and abandoned cats.
David Lee's team targeted these animals for destruction as a way of forcing the Youngs to
stop their public criticism of Scientology.
In the summer of 1997 Stacy Young was interviewed by the popular American 60 Minutes
TV programme for an expose about Scientology. Scientology attorneys sent her a
threatening letter telling her to withdraw her permission to allow 60 Minutes to use her
interview on the show. Stacy refused to do so. At the same time, Vaughn testified before
the state government in Hamburg, Germany, about his knowledge of Scientology's criminal
activities. In retaliation for the Youngs' actions, Scientology ordered David Lee and his
team to launch an all-out assault to have them arrested on criminal animal abuse charges.
Two Scientology operatives under David Lee's direction moved into an apartment next door
to the Youngs and began going door to door in the neighborhood complaining about diseased
cats and filthy conditions. The neighbors knew these complaints were false and did nothing
about them. Lee organized a phone campaign against the Youngs to Animal Control, which
began coming to the Youngs' house nearly every day to inspect, based on these anonymous
phone complaints. The house was always impeccably clean and the rescued cats were healthy
and clean. Then anonymous calls were made to the City Council and Mayor's offices.
David Lee visited the Youngs' veterinarian and told him the animals at the Youngs were
diseased and filthy. The veterinarian made regular house calls to the sanctuary, so he
knew Lee's reports were false. Next Lee left anonymous letters on the doorsteps of
all the Youngs' neighbors warning the neighbors they better complain to the authorities
about the Youngs' filthy, diseased animals.
David Lee had his team make anonymous calls to the county mental health department,
complaining that Stacy Young was crazy and needed to be incarcerated. One evening
two officials from the commitment division arrived at the Youngs' house in white coats to
take her away. Fortunately Stacy was able to convince them that she was sane, and went on
the explain that the anonymous calls they had received were part of an orchestrated
campaign by David Lee, working for Scientology, to keep her from speaking out about
Lee had people picketing the Youngs' house, but all the neighbors would come and chase the
picketers away. Finally David Lee began targeting the Youngs' landlord, who lived in the
neighborhood. Lee called the landlord threatening to have him arrested for violations of
the local city ordinances. The landlord told the Youngs they would have to move the
Just as David Lee thought he had been successful in driving the Youngs into silence about
Scientology, Robert Minton contacted them and offered to help them purchase another house
where they could safely care for their rescued animals.
The Youngs moved to Vashon, an island in Puget Sound a half hour from Seattle. Lee
took his team to Vashon and launched a new assault on the Youngs there. He circulated
false "public health warnings" about the Youngs' filthy, diseased cats, telling
people they could catch AIDS from the animals. He approached the county storage facility,
which was next door to the Youngs' house, and asked to be allowed to set up surveillance
equipment on the Youngs. The county refused. While Vaughn Young was in Germany to testify
again about Scientology, David Lee had the Youngs' dog kidnapped, presumably with the
intention of killing him. Fortunately, the dog was able to escape but was nearly dead when
neighbors found him. All his teeth had been kicked out by what the vet thought must have
been a big boot, and his back was severely hurt as if he had jumped out of a moving car or
It was discovered in late 1998, that Lee was the case officer for a deep undercover
agent (Laura Terepin aka Jolie Steckart).
Jolie Steckart was provided with a false identity and operated under an assumed name
when she first volunteered to work for the Cult Awareness Network (CAN) in 1990. CAN was
sued out of existence by Scientology in 1997. In early 1998, she volunteered to work for
another anti-cult group, FACTNET which was also being sued by Scientology. But while she
was at FACTNET Minton hired an investigator who uncovered Jolie and her
more-than-eight-year undercover operation against the anti-cult community which was in
1998 being orchestrated by David Lee. She has not been seen since.
Lee's campaign against Minton has been the most pervasive anyone familiar with
Scientology's methods has ever seen. David Lee has been assigned to supervise a campaign
to destroy Minton since at least October 1997, when he directed a Scientology operative
named Mary Frances Newey to go to Nashville, Tennessee, to begin doing a background check
on Minton. This woman bumbled the job, asking about Bob's father, Robert Minton Sr., by
But a few days later, the same operative called Minton and told him that Scientology was
prepared to start attacking him on several fronts unless he stopped giving financial
support to Scientology's enemies.
The areas of possible attack she listed to Minton were family, children, his ex-wife,
his ex-business partners, his state and federal taxes, his mental health, drugs, and
paying picketers. Of course, Minton informed her he had no intention of backing away
because of her threats.
At the end of November, Minton was in Seattle to visit the Youngs after they moved into
the house he had bought for them. While there he discovered that on the morning the house
closed, Lee had visited the real estate agent who had taken care of the transaction.
Lee admitted to the realtor that he had trespassed on the property, just "having a
In mid-December Therese Minton arrived at the house in New Hampshire and found a dead cat
on the doorstep, courtesy of Lee. In January 1998 Lee launched a flurry of picketing
and leafleting in Boston against Minton. The first leaflet, distributed under cover of
darkness in Minton's Beacon Hill neighborhood, was titled "HATRED HIDDEN BEHIND FREE
SPEECH" and was signed the Church of Scientology.
|The day after, Lee's
partner Eugene Ingram was making phone calls to Minton's friends and associates saying he
was investigating Minton for conspiracy to commit extortion.
The same day, Minton found out that
Lee had called his father to drive a wedge between them.
On January 8, 1998, David Lee visited Minton's mother, uncle, aunt, and his two
brothers at their places of business, to do his usual job. Meanwhile, Lee's group of
undercover leafleters returned to Minton's neighborhood in the middle of the night with a
new leaflet: NEIGHBOR PAYS TO CREATE HATRED AGAINST RELIGIOUS GROUP. This leaflet accused
Minton of funding pornographers, sado-masochists, and neo-Nazis. Later in January, Lee
surfaced in Los Angeles, having tracked down a former employee of Minton living there. Lee
told the former associate that he was contacting everyone he could find who had worked
with Minton. Again, Lee did the usual.
By March 5, a private investigator calling himself Ron Christopher offered a large sum of
money to a former business associate of Minton in return for information about
Minton. There is reason to believe that Ron Christopher is a pseudonym for David Lee. This
same private investigator identified himself as being with Financial Researchers when he
made calls to several of Minton's friends and associates asking questions about him. On
August 24, 1998, a group of people picketed the office building of a former associate of
Minton's, Bob Smith, who had been quoted in the New York Times giving a favorable report
about Minton's character. Private investigator Lee was undoubtedly the source of the
information about where Bob Smith could be found, at the Turan Corporation, a company
Smith and Minton had founded together.
Later in August David Lee contacted Minton's son to do what he knows best. A few
days later, Lee directed an event in Minton's Beacon Hill neighborhood during which
leaflets were passed out to friends, neighbors, and parents of his children's classmates,
primarily intended to upset his children about their father.
Bob's home in Sandown
|That evening people
with picket signs showed up in New Hampshire holding picket signs again intended to upset
In September, David Lee's
counterpart in England, Peter Franks, continued the coordinated campaign to destroy
Minton's family by visiting Therese Minton's friends and family there. Franks said Lee
would visit every neighbor in Boston, as well as the Minton children's teachers,
administrators and parents of their friends.
In October 1998, Lee coordinated with Franks to see that a 14-page pack of discrediting
materials was delivered to Minton's former partner, Jeff Schmidt, and the Nigerian
Minister of Finance in Washington, D.C., during the IMF meeting there. This was the
beginning of the campaign to use Nigeria to go after Minton. Shortly after that IMF
meeting, as earlier stated, someone burgled the London office of Minton's former partner,
Jeff Schmidt. Based on the Greenland Holding information contained in the Scientology
written Fashanu Report released in April 2000 by John Fashanu, the data from Jeff
Schmidt's office was stolen by someone working for Franks and Lee and included in the
Peter Franks has had numerous meetings and phone calls with Jeff Schmidt and Selwyn Lewis
since early 1998 and conducted a serious campaign of harassment directed at Jeff and his
wife which forced them to leave England for Brunei (where Jeff's wife is from). Lee has
continued to work in co-ordination with Peter Franks on the non existent $6 billion debt
buy back scheme that would turn the Nigerian Government against Minton.
But it appears the government now has a better appreciation of these intrigues.
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