Latest Cases

Latest Cases

Surname: Delaforce
Christian Names: Raymond Richard
Country: Australia
State or Province: QLD
City or Town: Emu Park
Service #: 1733581
Service: Army
Branch: RAE
Commencement of service: Unknown
Completion of service: Unknown
Case Notes:

 

Delaforce 1

At any ANZAC Day service there is a press photographer looking for an opportunity to get a photo that adds atmosphere to the meaning of the day and those participating in it.  ANZAC Day 2016, at Emu Park in Queensland, provided just that opportunity. Raymond Richard Delaforce looks the epitome of the casual and humble attitude displayed by Veterans on such an important day.

Delaforce served 282 days in Vietnam as part of the 1st Field Squadron, Royal Australian Engineers, as the Vietnam War Service certificate, below, shows.

Delaforce 2

An extract of 1st SQN’s service history in Vietnam:

3 Field Troop of 1 FD SQN was deployed to the War in South Vietnam and arrived in Bien Hoa Province on 28 September 1965. When the Australian Task Force was established at Nui Dat in Phouc Tuy Province, the remainder of 1 FD SQN deployed and arrived at Nui Dat on 9 June 1966. The unit was expanded to include 21 Engineer Support Troop, a plant troop, HQ troop, and an expanded RAEME Workshop. In addition, the three combat engineer troops each had an establishment of two officers, a staff sergeant, a sergeant, three corporals, three lance corporals and Sappers to a strength of 65 all ranks. The unit was designated as ”1 FD SQN GP RAE”. The unit returned to Australia in 1972 as a part of the Australian withdrawal from the Vietnam War, and was re-located to Holsworthy.

In the above picture Delaforce is wearing his official medals, all awarded for his service as a ‘Sapper’ with the Royal Australian Engineers. On the left lapel, along with a number of badge-pins, is attached the ‘Front Line’ commemorative medal, not an official medal, in fact nothing more than a worthless trinket.

Delaforce 3

Above, is a picture of the offending item. The Front Line Service Medal was issued by the 2/12 Infantry Battalion Association, based in Queensland, to identify those who took part in World War Two front line actions with the Infantry, differentiating them from other units. It was manufactured and sold by that Association as a funds raising exercise. They made a lot of money selling this tin trinket to gullible people, who had no association with the 2/12 Infantry Battalion whatsoever.

Defence Honours and Awards has this to say about such medals:

“Medals not listed in the order of wear may be worn officially, on an unrestricted basis, only with the express permission of the Governor-General. As a general rule, such permission is extended only to official awards of foreign governments. It has never been extended to private commemorative medals. Those medals should not be worn at all, and certainly never on the left hand side and mounted with officially issued medals”.

Now, reading the above, one could argue that Delaforce does not have the ‘tin’ medal mounted with his official medals. The thing appears on the left side of his jacket, with his official medals, and anyone not ‘in the know’ would not realise this.

There is also the glaring issue that Delaforce, who served in the Engineers, is wearing an item produced to commemorate service with the Infantry. What was he thinking when he pinned it on?

Raymond Delaforce, obviously the photographer thought it worthy to take that snap of you on that day, as a result of your folly, you are worthy to earn a permanent place on the ANZMI website.

 

Surname: Cowie
Christian Names: Wayne William
Country: Australia
State or Province: QLD
City or Town: Rockhampton
Service #: 1735654
Service: Army
Branch: Artillery
Commencement of service: 09 Jul 1969
Completion of service: Unknown
Case Notes:

 

 

Cowie 1

 

They say that the further North you get in Australia, the more relaxed the people are.

It is certainly true in this picture of a very relaxed Wayne Cowie, taken at a Vietnam Veterans commemorative service, in 2015, at the Cockscomb Veterans Bush Retreat, a nice 30 minute drive from Rockhampton in  Northern Queensland.

Cowie 2

 

Cowie served 277 days in Vietnam as part of the 4th Field Regiment, The Royal Regiment Australian Artillery, as the Vietnam War Service certificate shows.

The 4th Field Regiment was raised at Wacol on 3 May 1960, being the first major Regular Army unit to be raised in Queensland. The Regiment moved to Lavarack Barracks in 1968. As a complete unit, the Regiment served two tours of duty in South Vietnam, as well as sending individual batteries to South Vietnam, Singapore, Malaya and East Timor.

Why this little potted history, you ask? Cowie was part of an artillery unit, a point that will later to prove very important in his undoing.

Cowie 3

At the end of his official medals, Cowie has tacked on a commemorative abomination, this one known as the Front Line Medal. This piece of tin may look pretty, however, you do not fool your fellow veterans, who would recognise you had no association with the 2/12 Infantry Battalion whatsoever.

The Front Line Service Medal was issued by the 2/12 Infantry Battalion Association, based in Queensland, to identify those who took part in World War Two front line actions with the Infantry, differentiating them from other units. It was manufactured and sold by that Association as a funds raising exercise. They made a lot of money selling this tin trinket to gullible people, who had no association with the 2/12 Infantry Battalion whatsoever. You can add Cowie to that list of gullible people.

Defence Honours and Awards has this to say about such medals:

“Medals not listed in the order of wear may be worn officially, on an unrestricted basis, only with the express permission of the Governor-General. As a general rule, such permission is extended only to official awards of foreign governments. It has never been extended to private commemorative medals. Those medals should not be worn at all, and certainly never on the left hand side and mounted with officially issued medals”.

Have you picked up on the glaring inconsistency yet? That’s right, Cowie was attached to an artillery unit, yet he is wearing a thing designed to commemorate service in the infantry.

Yes, they certainly are more relaxed up North, and Wayne Cowie did not have to expend much energy to earn a permanent place on the ANZMI website.

Surname: Campbell
Christian Names: Simone Elaine
Country: Australia
State or Province: NSW
City or Town: Wollongong
Service #: Unkown
Service: RAAF/RAAF Reserve
Branch: Crew Attendant
Commencement of service: 02 May 95
Completion of service: Still Serving
Case Notes:

 

 

Campbells1

In the above photograph, Simone Campbell is shown, on ANZAC Day, 2015, wearing the Australian Defence Medal, and no campaign medals. She is missing the Defence Long Service Medal, which she was awarded, on 01 May 2010.

Campbell, after RAAF recruit training, went on to train as a clerk administrative. However, after a short time, she transferred to the steward mustering. Following a few years as a steward, she was accepted for crew attendant (flight steward) training. Campbell was then posted to Number 34 Squadron (34SQN), March 1999, as a crew attendant, on DA900 Falcon, VIP aircraft, ferrying members of the Federal Parliament, on their business activities. Subsequent to Campbell’s 34SQN posting, she was posted to 33SQN, as a crew attendant, on Boeing 707 aircraft.

Following several more postings, to ‘ground jobs’, Campbell resigned from the RAAF, on 04 August, 2008 and transferred to the RAAF Active Reserve, where she continues to serve, with the rank of sergeant.

On 11 January, 2016, an article appeared in the newspaper, the ‘Illawarra Mercury’, about Campbell’s exploits. In the article, she made some very unusual and interesting claims, about her RAAF service.

Excerpt from 'Illawarra Mercury':

‘Sergeant Simone Campbell was with the Royal Australian Air Force for 17 years and flew on missions in and out of Afghanistan, Iraq and East Timor. And was a member of support teams following the Bali bombings and tsunamis. She has personally endured many challenges. Now the work she does with youth and some of the six million Australians who suffer Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is helping many.’
Further in the article, Simone claims:

‘In September 1999 her aircraft was loaded with Special Forces bound for East Timor. It landed at night between two mountains and with no runway lights. She could see shots being fired. She did that for the next six months and learned to live with fear.
That was followed by support missions after the Bali bombings and tsunamis before being sent to the War on Terror. When she finally returned she found it hard to re-adjust. “I had to find ways to control the memories. I do have night terrors. Living with the horrors of what you have seen…is quite traumatic.”

Analysis of Claims:

Campbell claims that, in September 1999, her aircraft was loaded with Special Forces troops, bound for East Timor;
In fact, in August 1999, Campbell was on conversion course, at 34SQN, Canberra. The DA 900 Falcon aircraft, which she was training for, was not involved in any East Timor tasks. Actually, the Boeing 707 aircraft, of 33SQN, her much later posting, were engaged in ferrying SF troops from Townsville to Darwin only, where the B707 tasks terminated. Those tasks were then taken over, by 36SQN and 37SQN, C130 Hercules aircraft. Further, on 19 October 1999, Campbell had just completed the four week, RAAF Combat Survival course. Something does not add up, with her timing.

Campbell’s claims, of seeing ‘tracer bullets’, and landing between two hills, are pure fantasy, as she was never there.

We hold evidence, from an earlier and unrelated investigation, where a former senior Australian Army member, who was deployed in East Timor between 16 September, 1999 and 21 April, 2000, who has stated:

“I was there from 16 September 1999 to 21 April 2000. If there was any small arms fire (separate to the shot fired at a runaway prisoner), I must have slept through it."

"Timor kicked off on 16 September 1999 and Dili (and the surrounding areas) were secure by 23 September 1999. I can tell you that the entire area, including the airport, was secure.”

Campbell’s other claims of being in Iraq and Afghanistan, are a total fabrication. There is no evidence that she was ever posted to the Middle East Area of Operations (MEAO).

The ‘Defence Act 1903, Part 80A’ states:

‘Falsely representing to be returned soldier, sailor or airman
(1) A person commits an offence if:
(a) the person represents himself or herself to be a returned soldier, sailor or airman; and
(b) the representation is false.
Penalty: 30 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both.’

The first Bali bombing occurred on 12 October, 2002. One month prior, to the bombing, 10 September, 2002, Campbell was posted to 285SQN, a training squadron at RAAF Base Richmond.

The second Bali bombing, occurred on 1 October 2005 and, at that time, Campbell was posted to Headquarters, Air Command, at Glenbrook, NSW, to be the valet, to the Air Commander Australia. That posting was effective on 10 January, 2005, well before the second Bali bombing. Which Bali bombing are you referring to, Sgt Campbell, as neither fit your timeline?

Another of Campbell’s claims, is her involvement in the ‘Boxing Day Tsunami’, which occurred on 26 December, 2004. On 10 January, 2005, Campbell went on the ‘ground’ posting, mentioned above. At that stage, the 33SQN Boeing 707 aircraft were not yet involved in ‘Operation Sumatra Assist’, subsequent to the tsunami and, when they were involved, such a large aircraft would have been restricted to major, undamaged airfields, nowhere near the devastation.

Campbell’s claims are categorised as valour theft, by ‘gilding the lily’. However, to make such claims is distorting the truth, and manipulating the facts, to suit her personal agenda.

Campbell was asked to provide evidence of her involvement, in what she claims, by sending scans of her ‘Aircrew Flying Log Book’, which would have solved the matter, outright. Unfortunately, she refused to do so. Aircrew log books have no security classification, whatsoever.

The full article, in the ‘Illawarra Mercury’, is at:

http://www.illawarramercury.com.au/story/3655433/wind-beneath-many-wings/

Members of the Australian Defence Force, police, fire and ambulance services, put their lives on the line, every day. Do they boast about it? No way – they just get on with the job. The point is that they have plenty to boast about, but choose not to. ANZMI have found, with vast experience, that those who have done the least boast the most.

There must be something in the Wollongong water, as another fitness instructor, Lee Thomas Carr, also appears on ANZMI, for telling tall stories about his ‘nothing’.

Maybe Carr and Campbell should get together and swap war stories.

www.anzmi.net/index.php/cheats-thieves/567-carr

Simone Elaine Campbell: There is no doubt that you have served your country well, during your RAAF service, and have contributed to your community, with your involvement in assisting people with emotional problems.

Unfortunately, you have made false claims about active service, in East Timor and the MEAO, to enhance your standing in the community, and to influence people to attend your training classes, by inventing non-existent 'heroics'. Because of that deception, you will remain, in these pages, for a very long time.

Surname: Coret
Christian Names: Gerardus Cornelius
Country: Australia
State or Province: TAS
City or Town: Lilydale
Service #: 37866680
Service: Army
Branch: Infantry
Commencement of service: Unknown
Completion of service: Unknown
Case Notes:

 

 

 

Gerardus (Gerry) Coret, Justice of the Peace and President of the Lilydale (Tasmania) RSL Sub-Branch, served 376 days in Vietnam as part of the 5th Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment.

Coret 1 2

The above photo of Coret was taken in December 2015 at the Lilydale District School, where the Avenue of Honour, a garden area that honours fallen soldiers from the Lilydale region, was officially opened as part of local ANZAC Centenary commemorations. Coret can be seen here with his campaign medals proudly displayed.

Coret 2

In September 2015, Coret attended a wreath laying at the Lilydale Cenotaph as part of the “Centenary Experience” display in that town. This was just one of the hundreds of commemorative events conducted throughout Australia for the Centenary of ANZAC.

Again, Coret can be seen displaying his medals and one could assume he wears these same medals to all official RSL-related functions, and has done so for some time. He should be proud of the medals he received for his active military service, and also his continuing service as a member of the RSL Sub-Branch Executive.

Coret, however, cannot be proud of the fact he has attached a commemorative, or as more commonly known, a ‘tin medal’, to his Service medals. Doing such may impress those that do not know, however, you do not fool your fellow veterans, who would recognise you had no association with the 2/12 Infantry Battalion whatsoever.

Coret 3

The Front Line Service Medal was issued by the 2/12 Infantry Battalion Association, based in Queensland, to identify those who took part in World War Two front line actions with the Infantry, differentiating them from other units. It was manufactured and sold by that Association as a funds raising exercise. They made a lot of money selling this tin trinket to gullible people, who had no association with the 2/12 Infantry Battalion whatsoever.

Defence Honours and Awards has this to say about such medals:

“Medals not listed in the order of wear may be worn officially, on an unrestricted basis, only with the express permission of the Governor-General. As a general rule, such permission is extended only to official awards of foreign governments. It has never been extended to private commemorative medals. Those medals should not be worn at all, and certainly never on the left hand side and mounted with officially issued medals”.

Coret has deliberately flouted Government policy in order to give himself just that little more recognition and set himself apart from other Veterans. What he does not seem to understand is that he does not need that piece of ‘tin’ to show his ‘front line’ service as that has been adequately recognised by the Infantry Combat Badge he also wears on his suit.

Perhaps Coret could take onboard some advice from his Hobart cousins, who for a number of years have put out an instruction before each ANZAC Day, regarding dress, saluting and etiquette, stating at section 7:

“Occasionally a person will wrongly claim to be a returned veteran and wear medals to which they are not entitled. This practice is deceitful and disrespectful to the veteran community. Further, there are a number of unofficial medals not recognized through the Australian Honours system which should not be worn at events such as ANZAC Day”.

Gerardus (Gerry) Cornelius Coret, your Vietnam service has earned you the medals that you can be proud to wear. However, by adding a worthless commemorative 'tin' medal, you have earned yourself a place, in the ever-increasing numbers of RSL Sub-Branch Executives, who choose to flout protocol and convention, and in doing bring discredit on the Honours and Awards system and Veterans who have been awarded legitimate medals.

Surname: Harding
Christian Names: Leslie John
Country: Australia
State or Province: SA
City or Town: Arno Bay
Service #: 4717626
Service: Army
Branch: Infantry
Commencement of service: Unknown
Completion of service: Unknown
Case Notes:

 

 

 

Leslie John Harding served 370 days in Vietnam as part of the 5th Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment.

Harding 1

The above photo of Harding was taken at the 2015 Anzac Day service, at Arno Bay in South Australia. Harding can be seen here with his campaign medals proudly displayed, along with an equally impressive scarf in Vietnam campaign medal colours.

Harding 2

Harding, however, cannot be proud of the fact he has attached a commemorative, or as more commonly known, a ‘tin medal’, to his Service medals. Doing such may impress those that do not know, however, you do not fool your fellow veterans, who would recognise you had no association with the 2/12 Infantry Battalion whatsoever.

The Front Line Service Medal was issued by the 2/12 Infantry Battalion Association, based in Queensland, to identify those who took part in World War Two front line actions with the Infantry, differentiating them from other units. It was manufactured and sold by that Association as a funds raising exercise. They made a lot of money selling this tin trinket to gullible people, who had no association with the 2/12 Infantry Battalion whatsoever.

Defence Honours and Awards has this to say about such medals:

“Medals not listed in the order of wear may be worn officially, on an unrestricted basis, only with the express permission of the Governor-General. As a general rule, such permission is extended only to official awards of foreign governments. It has never been extended to private commemorative medals. Those medals should not be worn at all, and certainly never on the left hand side and mounted with officially issued medals”.

Perhaps the message is not getting through, or perhaps more and more veterans are choosing to disregard protocol and in doing so display they have little respect for their fellow veterans.

Whatever the reason, your effort has earned you a place on the ANZMI site along with other 5th Battalion members, such as Gerardus Coret, with history dictating that your numbers will grow as more are exposed.

Surname: Strevens
Christian Names: Stephen Conway
Country: Australia
State or Province: NSW
City or Town: Bega
Service #: R63337
Service: Navy
Branch: Marine Engineering
Commencement of service: 05 Apr 1964
Completion of service: Unknown
Case Notes:

 

 

 

Stephen (Steve) Strevens, Navy veteran, editor, author and historian – and medal cheat.

Strevens 1 2

 

The above photograph was taken on 24 April 2015, where Strevens appeared in an article in the Bega District News, talking about his latest book, this time about the experiences of a Vietnam veteran.

Strevens is best summed up in this biographical piece, issued as part of a media release from publishers Pan MacMillan Australia:

“Steve Strevens joined the Navy two weeks after his 16th birthday. He served in Vietnam, Malay and Borneo and then became a freelance writer. He was a regular contributor to The Age and has been published in many major newspapers and magazines, both here and overseas. He is a multi-award-winning journalist and has edited two regional newspapers. Steve's eight books include Slow River and the critically acclaimed biography of Collingwood AFL legend Bob Rose. He lives on the far south coast of NSW with his partner and their two ageing, loveable, but quite mad, dogs”.

Strevens served in Vietnam, Malaya and Borneo onboard HMAS Vendetta and HMAS Sydney. For this service he qualified for a number of official medals, as did others who served with him.

Strevens 2

In the above picture Strevens can be seen wearing, from left to right, the following medals:

1. Australian Active Service Medal (AASM) 1945-75 with 3 clasps – entitled.

2. Navy General Service Medal 1962 with 1 clasp – entitled.

3. Vietnam Logistic Support Medal (VLSM) – entitled.

4. Australian Service Medal (ASM) 1945-75 – entitled.

5. Australian Defence Medal (ADM) – entitled.

6. Vietnam Logistic Support Forces Medal – commemorative medal and not to be worn with official medals.

7. HMAS Sydney Medal - commemorative medal and not to be worn with official medals.

8. Pingat Jasa Malaysia Medal – entitled.

The two ‘offensive’ medals are shown below:

Strevens 3

Ex-service organisations sometimes commission their own unofficial medals to mark participation in particular military campaigns, periods of service, or types of service that have not been recognised through the Australian Honours and Awards system. Protocol dictates that unofficial medals should not be worn at public ceremonial and commemorative events. However, if they are worn as the occasion demands, the convention is that they are worn on the right breast.

The two medals above are commemorative ‘tin’ originally commissioned by a Naval association associated with HMAS Sydney, “The Vung Tau Ferry”. Before the early 1990’s there was no recognition for the Navy personnel who crewed the support ships serving Australians in Vietnam. Because of this, Naval associations produced their own. The VLSM was later instituted by the Commonwealth to provide official recognition.

The medal on the left was only available to association members who had served on the Sydney and the other is the Australian Logistic Support Forces Medal. These are purchased medals, commonly referred to as ‘tin’ medals.

If Strevens was such an acclaimed author and news editor, how did he let the ‘facts’ about these ‘tin’ medals slip through the cracks. Or is the truth of the matter Strevens chose to ignore the truth and add another two medals to make that rack look just that little more appealing to unsuspecting readers.

Stephen Strevens, through your own actions you have inadvertently written your own story and entry in the ever-increasing dishonour roll on ANZMI.

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