Friday, 16 October 2009

Daily Star story

On 14 August 2008 the Daily Star published a report which stated that Halligen's secret operation on behalf of the McCanns now included “retured... MI5 agents”.

Secret A-Team in hunt for Maddie
By Jerry Lawton
14th August 2008

Desperate Kate and Gerry McCann have forked out £500,000 on an “A-Team” of former top spooks to find missing daughter Madeleine.

The couple now have “a global operation” of dozens of retired FBI, CIA and even MI5 agents dedicated to solving the mystery of her disappearance. The top secret team has been given six months to solve the riddle.

Doctors Kate and Gerry, both 40, have vowed to keep up the search for five-year-old Madeleine after the latest sighting at a Belgian bank was ruled out. And the couple, from Rothley, Leics, have been reassured their new team of private eyes will follow up every lead around the world.

Their spokesman Clarence Mitchell said: “There is a global operation working for Kate and Gerry. They are internationally-based with components in Britain, America, Europe and other countries where sightings have been made.”

The new team, appointed three months ago, is half way through a six-month contract.

Mr Mitchell explained: “A sum of £500,000 has been committed to them from the Find Madeleine Fund. “They have been on board for a few months and are on a six-month contract. For security reasons we can’t go into detail of the experts involved but it would not be wrong to say some are former military and police personnel with a degree of expertise.”

Last night Mr Mitchell revealed there had been several more sightings of Madeleine in Belgium on top of 30 reported in the past week. He said: “A number of these sightings have been well-meaning and have been looked at but ruled out. Kate and Gerry are not getting excited or upset by the reported sightings.”

A family source added: “Unfortunately, with all the publicity, there have been some copycat sightings which police are not taking at all seriously.”

The couple’s Spanish-based detective agency Metodo 3 are still working on an £8,000-a-month retainer. They are being kept on because of their local knowledge and contacts. Mr Mitchell explained: “Spain, Portugal and North Africa still remain the most likely places where Madeleine could be. However, with recent sightings in Amsterdam and Brussels, we have the power to have investigators out on the ground immediately.”

Thursday, 15 October 2009

Daily Mail story

On 13 August 2008 the Daily Mail published a report which referred to Halligen’s success in selling himself to the McCann’s but avoided his name. In typical; Halligen style, it was portrayed as a ‘team of crack US detective’ and exployed ‘ex-FBI, CIA and US special forces’.

McCanns hire crack team of ex-FBI agents to find Madeleine
Last updated at 12:25 PM on 13th August 2008

Kate and Gerry McCann have hired a team of crack US detectives to lead the hunt for their missing daughter Madeleine, it has emerged. The unnamed US firm is said to have been offered a £500,000 six-month contract by the Find Madeleine Fun to help spearhead the search.

A friend of the McCanns said: ‘The hunt for Madeleine is becoming more and more international and it was felt that a truly international firm was now needed to lead the inquiry. These really are the big boys. They are absolutely the best, but they are extremely secretive and cloak-and-dagger about what they do. Since their appointment, Metodo has very much taken a back seat and they are now concentrating primarily in Portugal and Spain and across the Straits of Gibraltar into north Africa, where they have their main contacts. The American agency is pretty much handling everything else.’

The secretive firm is said to employ ex-FBI, CIA and US special forces, according to the Daily Mirror.

The McCanns’ spokesman Clarence Mitchell, said: ‘Kate and Gerry made it clear from the outset they would leave no stone unturned in finding Madeleine and that means employing the very best people in any given field. It is correct that an international firm of investigators have been appointed. But I am unable to say anything at all about them because of the covert nature of their work and the need for secrecy, not only in looking for Madeleine, but also in relation to previous operations.’

The McCanns now have detectives working around the world at a reported cost of £166,000 a month.

Among the possible sightings they are following up, apparently ignored by Portuguese police, is one by a British yachtsman on the Caribbean island of Margarita last May. The appointment of the USfirm comes after it was revealed that a suspected sighting of Madeleine in Brussels was ruled out by police. A blonde girl had been seen with a woman in a hijab at the KBC bank in the Belgium capital and the McCanns had been treating the sighting as a priority. However their hopes were dashed when a man came forward and confirmed that the girl was his daughter out with her nanny.

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Shirin Trachiotis

Dr Shirin H Trachiotis (former wife of Gregory D. Trachiotis - pictured) was identified by Mark Hollingsworth in his investigation as one of Halligen’s girlfriends and it was alleged that some of the McCann money was paid into her account.

Dr Trachiotis is a Washington DC-based ‘emergency medicine physician’ at Sibley Memorial Hospital.

She graduated in 1995 from George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences.

An unclassified paper prepared by Sigma Systems Research in September 2002 noted that Dr Trachiotis “served as a consultant on the project. She is a member of National Board of Medical Examiners, PALS, ACLS certified. She is an attending physician with the emergency medicine group at the Holy Cross Hospital (Silver Spring, MD).”

On 13 October 2005 the Washington Post recorded that 198 River Park Drive by Gregory D. and Shirin H. Trachiotis to Chad and Jennifer Fredrick for $1.175 million.

Gregory D. Trachiotis appeared to be her then husband. He is an Associate Professor of Surgery at the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences. In July 2007 it was reported that “Gregory D. Trachiotis (cardiothoracic surgery) was named professor of surgery and chief of cardiac surgery at the Washington, DC, Veterans Affairs Medical Center and chief of thoracic surgery at the George Washington Medical Center. He has been on staff at both centers since 1998.” He is the son of Florine Dezzani Trachiotis and Dean Trachiotis - active members of the St Basil Greek Orthodox Church in Stockton, California.

The Beeches

Halligen's last known address was:

The Beeches
Henley Park
Cobbett Hill Road
Surrey GU3 2BZ

Since August 1999, Julia Lynne POWELL has lived at this address.

Powell is believed to be one of - or former - Halligen's girlfriend.

The property was refurbished and split into four dwellings in 1999 and two of the four are currently being advertised for rent - at £1,895 pcm.

John Unger

In June and July 2007 Halligen donated $1,000 to John Unger. On the latter occasion Halligen described himself as ‘Patton Boggs LLP/Attorney’.

John R. Unger, II is a Democrat representing the 16th District in the West Virginia Senate. Unger had filed pre-candidacy papers to oppose Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, the Republican incumbent for West Virginia’s 2nd congressional district, but ultimately decided not to run.

“West Virginia State Senator John Unger is running for Congress because he has committed his life to serving others and has the experience needed to create opportunities for the people of West Virginia’s 2nd Congressional District. Unger was first elected to the West Virginia Senate in 1998 at the age of 28 and is currently serving his third term. John Unger was born and raised in the district, growing up in Martinsburg and has dedicated his life to serving and empowering people in his community, his state, and around the world. Unger volunteered with Mother Teresa in India, provided relief for refugees in Hong Kong and Turkey, and worked with Save the Children International in Iraq.”

DSB Special Batteries

Before re-inventing himself as a secret agent Halligen worked at DSB Special Batteries Ltd in Crawley and once wrote about the problems of rechargeable batteries:

Possible sighting

There has been unconfirmed report that Halligen is still in the UK and that he is still driving a Range Rover.

Great Falls

In October 2007 a 'KR Halligen' bought a house (10112 High Hill Ct, Great Falls, VA) for $1,685,000.

It was sold on 21 October 2008 for $1,485,000.

The US court case

Halligen is being sued in the United States for $1.4 million.



Case Number: 1:2009cv00655
Filed: April 9, 2009

Court: District Of Columbia District Court
Office: Securities/Commodities Office
County: 99999
Presiding Judge: Judge Rosemary M. Collyer

Nature of Suit: Other Statutes - Securities/Commodities/Exchanges
Cause: Federal Question
Jurisdiction: Federal Question
Jury Demanded By: 28:1331 Fed. Question
Amount Demanded: $1,400,000.00

Red Defence - more details

113A Jermyn StreetLondon SW11Y 6HJ

42 Arodene Road
London SW2 2BH
DOB 6 November 1969

Kevin Richard HALLIGEN
Flat 2
113A Jermyn Street
London SW11Y 6HJ
DOB 14 July 1961

In February 2009 Halligen changed his address to:

The Beeches
Henley Park
Cobbett Hill Road
Surrey GU3 2BZ

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Oakley International

Oakley International Group Llc
2550 M St NwWashington, DC 20037
Phone: (202) 457-6146 Website: Information not found (?)

Business Categories Defense systems and equipment

Navigation Equipment, Search, Detection, Navigation, Guidance, Aeronautical, and Nautical System and Instrument Manufacturing

Oakley International Group Llc is a private company categorized under Defense Systems and Equipment and located in Washington, DC. Current estimates show this company has an annual revenue of $100,000 and employs a staff of approximately 1.

Kevin R. Halligen

UK Marriage Index

Kevin R. Halligen married Jennifer P. Darvill/Palmer in Alton, Hampshire in March 1991.

WASHINGTON, DC Political Contributions by Individuals

Kevin R Halligen (Patton Boggs LLP/Attorney), (Zip code: 20037) $1000 to UNGER FOR CONGRESS on 06/28/07

Tim Craig-Harvey

According to Pipl, like Halligen, Tim Craig-Harvey has a link to the Inkerman Group. has some family details:

Serena Katherine Craig Harvey, (nee Fremantle), [b. 1967], daughter of Mr & Mrs Robin Fremantle, of the Barons Cottesloe, and her husband, Major Tim Craig Harvey, The Royal Dragoon Guards, produced a daughter, India Poppy, 25 January, 2002. Tim is a son of the late Hugh Craig Harvey, MC. [Kin of Nicholas Craig Harvey, who m. 1983, Lady Julia Helen Percy, daughter of the 10th Duke of Northumberland.]

Linkin lists him as a Director at Vigil Limited and CHS Commodities.

And from Companies House:

Company No. 06868379
Status: Active Date of Incorporation: 03/04/2009
Country of Origin: United Kingdom Company Type: Private Limited CompanyNature of Business (SIC(03)):None Supplied Accounting Reference Date: 30/04Last Accounts Made Up To: (NO ACCOUNTS FILED)Next Accounts Due: 03/01/2011Last Return Made Up To: Next Return Due: 01/05/2010

CHC Commodities appears to be based in Zambia:

CHC Commodities was formed in February 2001 when the founding directors perceived there was a gap in the Zambian agricultural sector for a company able to provide reliable and accountable storage and handling facilities, a credible brokerage service for bulk agricultural commodities such as Maize, Wheat Sorghum and Soya Beans and a reliable and transparent price discovery system. The company set up operations at the FRA storage facilities on Mwembeshi Road in Lusaka, Zambia, offering an integrated brokerage, storage and logistics service to farmers, traders and processors involved in the agricultural sector.

Red Defence International

One of Halligen's companies was Red Defence International and its website was registered to Tim Craig-Harvey.

Registrant:Craig-Harvey, Tim 1 Cornhill London, London ec3v 3nd UK
Administrative Contact, Technical Contact: Craig-Harvey, Tim 1 Cornhill London, London ec3v 3nd UK 02077 436628
Record expires on 27-Jul-2010. Record created on 19-Jan-2005. Database last updated on 13-Oct-2009 15:37:55 EDT.
Domain servers in listed order:

Inkerman Group

In February 2003 the Inkerman Group (a security company) announed that it had appointed Halligen as one of its Directors. The announcement (which is still on is typical of the way in which he makes himself sound important by hinting at his 'secret' role in the worlds of defence and intelligence.

Sir John Walker and the board of Inkerman Group are pleased to announce the appointment of Kevin Halligen as the CEO of Inkerman Global and Executive Technical Director of The Inkerman Group.

Kevin joined Inkerman from Cap Gemini Ernst & Young, where he advised clients in the Aerospace and Defence sectors, MoD and Government on Business and Contracting Strategy.

With 15 years experience of Defence Technology and having been closely involved in "Special" Projects for the MOD for many years, Kevin will focus on technology-centric issues and his prime task will be to roll out and deliver the revolutionary Minerva Programme, which addresses all facets of the multi-layered threat faced by Industry and Government in the post-September 11 era.
Kevin says, "I am delighted to be joining fellow professionals at Inkerman and look forward to delivering value to clients and stakeholders alike."

Mark Hollingsworth investigates

The following article by investigative journalist Mark Hollingsworth reveals Halligen's involvement with the McCann family as well as providing a lot other background information.

September 25, 2009

Mark Hollingsworth Investigates The McCann Files
Disillusioned with the Portuguese police, Gerry and Kate McCann turned to private detectives to find their missing daughter. Instead the efforts of the private eyes served only to scare off witnesses, waste funds and raise false hopes. Mark Hollingsworth investigates the investigators.

It was billed as a ‘significant development’ in the exhaustive search for Madeleine McCann. At a recent dramatic press conference in London, the lead private investigator David Edgar, a retired Cheshire detective inspector, brandished an E-FIT image of an Australian woman, described her as ‘a bit of a Victoria Beckham lookalike’, and appealed for help in tracing her. The woman was seen ‘looking agitated’ outside a restaurant in Barcelona three days after Madeleine’s disappearance. ‘It is a strong lead’, said Edgar, wearing a pin-stripe suit in front of a bank of cameras and microphones. ‘Madeleine could have been in Barcelona by that point. The fact the conversation took place near the marina could be significant.’

But within days reporters discovered that the private detectives had failed to make the most basic enquiries before announcing their potential breakthrough. Members of Edgar’s team who visited Barcelona had failed to speak to anyone working at the restaurant near where the agitated woman was seen that night, neglected to ask if the mystery woman had been filmed on CCTV cameras and knew nothing about the arrival of an Australian luxury yacht just after Madeleine vanished.
The apparent flaws in this latest development were another salutary lesson for Kate and Gerry McCann, who have relied on private investigators after the Portuguese police spent more time falsely suspecting the parents than searching for their daughter. For their relations with private detectives have been frustrating, unhappy and controversial ever since their daughter’s disappearance in May 2007.

The search has been overseen by the millionaire business Brian Kennedy, 49, who set up Madeleine’s Fund: Leaving No Stone Unturned, which aimed ‘to procure that Madeleine’s abduction is thoroughly investigated’. A straight-talking, tough, burly self-made entrepreneur and rugby fanatic, he grew up in a council flat near Tynecastle in Scotland and was brought up as a Jehovah’s Witness. He started his working life as a window cleaner and by 2007 had acquired a £350 million fortune from double-glazing and home-improvement ventures. Kennedy was outraged by the police insinuations against the McCanns and, though a stranger, worked tirelessly on their behalf. ‘His motivation was sincere,’ said someone who worked closely with him. ‘He was appalled by the Portuguese police, but he also had visions of flying in by helicopter to rescue Madeleine.’

Kennedy commissioned private detectives to conduct an investigation parallel to the one run by the Portuguese police. But his choice showed how dangerous it is when powerful and wealthy businessmen try to play detective. In September 2007, he hired Metodo 3, an agency based in Barcelona, on a six-month contract and paid it an estimated £50,000 a month. Metodo 3 was hired because of Spain’s ‘language and cultural connection’ with Portugal. ‘If we’d had big-booted Brits or, heaven forbid, Americans, we would have had doors slammed in our faces’ said Clarence Mitchell, spokesperson for the McCann’s at the time. ‘And it’s quite likely that we could have been charged with hindering the investigation as technically it’s illegal in Portugal to undertake a secondary investigation.

The agency had 35 investigators working on the case in Britain, France, Spain, Portugal and Morocco. A hotline was set up for the public to report sightings and suspicions, and the search focussed on Morocco. But the investigation was dogged by over-confidence and braggadocio. ‘We know who took Madeleine and hope she will be home by Christmas,’ boasted Metodo 3’s flamboyant boss Francisco Marco. But no Madeleine materialised and their contract was not renewed.

Until now, few details have emerged about the private investigation during those crucial early months, but an investigation by ES shows that key mistakes were made, which in turn made later enquiries far more challenging.

ES has spoken to several sources close to the private investigations that took place in the first year and discovered that:
- The involvement of Brian Kennedy and his son Patrick in the operation was counter-productive, notably when they were questioned by the local police for acting suspiciously while attempting a 24-hour ‘stake out’.
- The relationship between Metodo 3 and the Portuguese police had completely broken down.
- Key witnesses were questioned far too aggressively, so much so that some of them later refused to talk to the police.
- Many of the investigators had little experience of the required painstaking forensic detective work.

By April 2008, nearing the first anniversary of the disappearance, Kennedy and the McCanns were desperate. And so when Henri Exton, a former undercover police officer who worked on MI5 operations, and Kevin Halligen, a smooth-talking Irishman who claimed to have worked for covert British government intelligence agency GCHQ, walked through the door, their timing was perfect. Their sales pitch was classic James Bond spook-talk: everything had to be ‘top secret’ and ‘on a need to know basis’. The operation would involve 24-hour alert systems, undercover units, satellite imagery and round-the-clock surveillance teams that would fly in at short notice. This sounded very exciting but, as one source close to the investigation told ES, it was also very expensive and ultimately unsuccessful. ‘The real job at hand was old-fashioned, tedious, forensic police work rather than these boy’s own, glory boy antic,’ he said.

But Kennedy was impressed by the license-to-spy presentation and Exton and Halligen were hire for a fee of £100,000 per month plus expenses. Ostensibly, the contract was with Halligen’s UK security company, Red Defence International Ltd, and an office was set up in Jermyn Street, in St James’s. Only a tiny group of employees did the painstaking investigative work of dealing with thousands of emails and phone calls. Instead, resources were channelled into undercover operations in paedophile rings and among gypsies throughout Europe, encouraged by Kennedy. A five-man surveillance team was dispatched in Portugal, overseen by the experienced Exton, for six weeks.

Born in Belgium in 1951, Exton had been a highly effective undercover officer for the Manchester police. A maverick and dynamic figure, he successfully infiltrated gangs of football hooligans in the 1980’s. While not popular among his colleagues, in 1991 he was seconded to work on MI5 undercover operations against drug dealers, gangsters and terrorists, and was later awarded the Queen’s Police Medal for ‘outstanding bravery’. By all accounts, the charismatic Exton was a dedicated officer. But in November 2002, the stress appeared to have overcome his judgement when he was arrested for shoplifting.

While working on an MI5 surveillance, Exton was caught leaving a tax-free shopping area at Manchester airport with a bottle of perfume he had not paid for. The police were called and he was given the option of the offence being dealt with under caution or to face prosecution. He chose a police caution and so in effect admitted his guilt. Exton was sacked, but was furious about the way he had been treated and threatened to sue MI5. He later set up his own consulting company and moved to Bury in Lancashire.

While Exton, however flawed, was the genuine article as an investigator, Halligen was a very different character. Born in Dublin in 1961, he has been described as a ‘Walter Mitty figure’. He used false names to collect prospective clients at airports in order to preserve secrecy, and he called himself ‘Kevin’ or ‘Richard’ or ‘Patrick’ at different times to describe himself to business contacts. There appears to be no reason for all this subterfuge except that he thought this was what agents did. A conspiracy theorist and lover of the secret world, he is obsessed by surveillance gadgets and even installed a covert camera to spy on his own employees. He claimed to have worked for GCHQ, but in fact he was employed by the Atomic Energy Authority (AEA) as head of defence systems in the rather less glamorous field of new information technology, researching the use of ‘special batteries’. He told former colleagues and potential girlfriends that he used to work for MI5, MI6 and the CIA. He also claimed that he was nearly kidnapped by the IRA, was involved in the first Gulf War and had been a freefall parachutist.

Very little of this is true. What is true is that Halligen has a degree in electronics, worked on the fringes of the intelligence community while at AEA and does understand government communications. He could also be an astonishingly persuasive, engaging and charming individual. Strikingly self-confident and articulate, he could be generous and clubbable. ‘He was very good company but only when it suited him’ says one friend. He kept people in compartments.’
After leaving the AEA, Halligen set up Red Defence International Ltd as an international security and political risk company, advising clients on the risks involved in investing and doing business in unstable, war-torn and corrupt countries. He worked closely with political risk companies and was a persuasive advocate of IT security. In 2006, he struck gold when hired by Trafigura, the Dutch commodities trading company. Executives were imprisoned in the Ivory Coast after toxic waste was dumped in landfills near its biggest city Abidjan. Trafigura was blamed and hired Red Defence International at vast expense to help with the negotiations to release its executives. A Falcon business jet was rented for several months during the operation and it was Halligen’s first taste of the good life. The case only ended when Trafigura paid $197 million to the government of the Ivory Coast to secure the release of the prisoners.

Halligen made a fortune from Trafigura and was suddenly flying everywhere first-class, staying at the Lansborough and Stafford hotels in London and The Willard hotel in Washington DC for months at a time. In 2007 he set up Oakley International Group and registered at the offices of the prestigious law firm Patton Boggs, in Washington DC, as an international security company. He was now strutting the stage as a self-proclaimed international spy expert and joined the Special Forces Club in Knightsbridge, where he met Exton.

During the Madeleine investigation, Halligen spent vast amounts of time in the HeyJo bar in the basement of the Abracadabra Club near his Jermyn Street office. Armed with a clutch of unregistered mobile phones and a Blackberry, the bar was in effect his office. ‘He was there virtually the whole day,’ a former colleague told ES. ‘He had an amazing tolerance for alcohol and a prodigious memory and so occasionally he would have amazing bursts of intelligence, lucidity and insights. They were very rare but they did happen.’

When not imbibing in St James’s, Halligen was in the United States, trying to drum up investors for Oakley International. On 15 August 2008, at the height of the McCann investigation crisis, he persuaded Andre Hollis, a former US Drug enforcement agency official, to write out an $80,000 cheque to Oakley in return for a ten per cent share-holding. The money was then transferred into the private accounts of Halligen and his girlfriend Shirin Trachiotis to finance a holiday in Italy, according to Hollis. In a $6 million lawsuit filed in Fairfax County, Virginia, Hollis alleges that Halligen ‘received monies for Oakley’s services rendered and deposited the same into his personal accounts’ and ‘repeatedly and systematically depleted funds from Oakley’s bank accounts for inappropriate personal expenses’.

Hollis was not the only victim. Mark Aspinall, a respected lawyer who worked closely with Halligen, invested £500,000 in Oakley and lost the lot. Earlier this year he filed a lawsuit in Washington DC against Halligen claiming $1.4 million in damages. The finances of Oakley International are in chaos and numerous employees, specialist consultants and contractors have not been paid. Some of them now face financial ruin.

Meanwhile, Exton was running the surveillance teams in Portugal and often paying his operatives upfront, so would occasionally be out-of-pocket because Halligen had not transferred funds. Exton genuinely believed that progress was being made and substantial and credible reports on child trafficking were submitted. But by mid-August 2008, Kennedy and Gerry McCann were increasingly concerned by an absence of details of how the money was being spent. At one meeting, Halligen was asked how many men constituted a surveillance team and he produced a piece of paper on which he wrote ‘between one and ten’. But he then refused to say how many were working and how much they were being paid.

While Kennedy and Gerry McCann accepted that the mission was extremely difficult and some secrecy was necessary, Halligen was charging very high rates and expenses. And eyebrows were raised when all the money was paid to Oakley International, solely owned and managed by Halligen. One invoice, seen by ES, shows that for ‘accrued expenses to May 5, 2008’ (just one month into the contract), Oakley charged $74,155. The ‘point of contact’ was Halligen who provided a UK mobile telephone number.

While Kennedy was ready to accept Halligen at face value, Gerry McCann ­ sharp, focused and intelligent ­ was more sceptical. The contract with Oakley International and Halligen was terminated by the end of September 2008, after £500,000-plus expenses had been spent.
For the McCanns it was a bitter experience, Exton has returned to Cheshire and, like so many people, is owed money by Halligen. As for Halligen, he has gone into hiding, leaving a trail of debt and numerous former business associates and creditors looking for him. He was last seen in January of this year in Rome, drinking and spending prodigiously at the Hilton Cavalieri and Excelsior hotels. He is now believed by private investigators, who have been searching for him to serve papers on behalf of creditors, to be in the UK and watching his back. Meanwhile, in the eye of the storm, the McCanns continue the search for their lost daughter.