The Complete Mystery of Madeleine McCann™
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philip edmonds - Philip Edmonds, Deputy Chairman of Stemcor, and nephew of Lady Margaret Hodge - Pictures of Madeleine, and the letters between Tony Bennett & Philip Edmonds in 2011   - Page 3 Mm11

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The Complete Mystery of Madeleine McCann™
Welcome to 'The Complete Mystery of Madeleine McCann' forum 🌹

Please log in, or register to view all the forums as some of them are 'members only', then settle in and help us get to the truth about what really happened to Madeleine Beth McCann.

When you register please do NOT use your email address for a username because everyone will be able to see it!

philip edmonds - Philip Edmonds, Deputy Chairman of Stemcor, and nephew of Lady Margaret Hodge - Pictures of Madeleine, and the letters between Tony Bennett & Philip Edmonds in 2011   - Page 3 Mm11

philip edmonds - Philip Edmonds, Deputy Chairman of Stemcor, and nephew of Lady Margaret Hodge - Pictures of Madeleine, and the letters between Tony Bennett & Philip Edmonds in 2011   - Page 3 Regist10

Philip Edmonds, Deputy Chairman of Stemcor, and nephew of Lady Margaret Hodge - Pictures of Madeleine, and the letters between Tony Bennett & Philip Edmonds in 2011

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Post by Verdi 14.02.17 20:53

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
To: [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
16 Aug 2011 
From: Philip Edmonds [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
Subject: Madeleine McCann
To: "ajsbennett@btinternet.com" [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
 Date: Tuesday, 16 August, 2011, 8:22

Dear Mr Bennett,

I am in receipt of your letter of 22 July regarding Madeleine McCann. I am sure you would appreciate that it would not be appropriate for me to comment too much, as we do not know each other, and I have no idea what your connection to the case is. However, I would also not want further conspiracy theories to fester by simply ignoring your letter.

Therefore, I can confirm that whatever information I had (including some photos of my sons taken on the day Madeleine disappeared, which showed her in the background) was passed both to the police and to the McCanns at the time. Having been in Portugal at the time of Madeleine’s disappearance and seen all of the events first hand, there is not one shred of doubt in my mind that the events as reported were correct. In fact one of the most terrible parts of this tragedy is that there are people out there who are questioning this, just adding further to the nightmare that the McCann family have suffered. I cannot imagine anything crueller.

I’m afraid I won’t enter into further correspondence on this matter with you. 

Yours sincerely,
 

Philip Edmonds
There lies the key.  A still tongue makes a wise head.

He didn't need to reply to you, he could have ignored your communication.  Why did he reply if not to say those few incriminating words and then conclude with a toss of the head "I'm afraid I won't enter into further correspondence on this matter with you".

cutthroat


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Post by Tony Bennett 14.02.17 21:14

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
To: [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
16 Aug 2011 
From: Philip Edmonds [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
Subject: Madeleine McCann
To: "ajsbennett@btinternet.com" [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
 Date: Tuesday, 16 August, 2011, 8:22

Dear Mr Bennett,

I am in receipt of your letter of 22 July regarding Madeleine McCann. I am sure you would appreciate that it would not be appropriate for me to comment too much, as we do not know each other, and I have no idea what your connection to the case is. However, I would also not want further conspiracy theories to fester by simply ignoring your letter.

Therefore, I can confirm that whatever information I had (including some photos of my sons taken on the day Madeleine disappeared, which showed her in the background) was passed both to the police and to the McCanns at the time. Having been in Portugal at the time of Madeleine’s disappearance and seen all of the events first hand, there is not one shred of doubt in my mind that the events as reported were correct. In fact one of the most terrible parts of this tragedy is that there are people out there who are questioning this, just adding further to the nightmare that the McCann family have suffered. I cannot imagine anything crueller.

I’m afraid I won’t enter into further correspondence on this matter with you. 

Yours sincerely,
 

Philip Edmonds
There lies the key.  A still tongue makes a wise head.

He didn't need to reply to you, he could have ignored your communication.  Why did he reply if not to say those few incriminating words and then conclude with a toss of the head "I'm afraid I won't enter into further correspondence on this matter with you".

cutthroat

Exactly right, @ Verdi.

Don't forget, it was a good bit of sleuthing (not by me) on CMOMM, six years back, that deduced that Philip Edmonds was the bloke being talked about in the newspaper article, which only referred to 'a man on holiday with his three boys'.

Someone (might have been 'Stella'/'StellabyStarlight', she was very good at this sort of thing) then went to work to deduce who that could be...and only one person matched that description - Philip Edmonds.

Then others (again not me) went to work and established...his exalted position in international steel company Stemcor...and his being the nephew of Lady Margaret Hodge and a member of the great Oppenheimer dynasty. 

Then I dug out the Stemcor addresses and wrote the letter.

You are dead right, he could have thrown my letter in the waste paper basket and that would have been that.

I think it's clear from his letter that Edmonds was saying (though he didn't mean to)...


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Dr Martin Roberts: "The evidence is that these are the pjyamas Madeleine wore on holiday in Praia da Luz. They were photographed and the photo handed to a press agency, who released it on 8 May, as the search for Madeleine continued. The McCanns held up these same pyjamas at two press conferences on 5 & 7June 2007. How could Madeleine have been abducted?"

Amelie McCann (aged 2): "Maddie's jammies!".  

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Post by Verdi 14.02.17 23:53

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
To: [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
16 Aug 2011 
From: Philip Edmonds [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
Subject: Madeleine McCann
To: "ajsbennett@btinternet.com" [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
 Date: Tuesday, 16 August, 2011, 8:22

Dear Mr Bennett,

I am in receipt of your letter of 22 July regarding Madeleine McCann. I am sure you would appreciate that it would not be appropriate for me to comment too much, as we do not know each other, and I have no idea what your connection to the case is. However, I would also not want further conspiracy theories to fester by simply ignoring your letter.

Therefore, I can confirm that whatever information I had (including some photos of my sons taken on the day Madeleine disappeared, which showed her in the background) was passed both to the police and to the McCanns at the time. Having been in Portugal at the time of Madeleine’s disappearance and seen all of the events first hand, there is not one shred of doubt in my mind that the events as reported were correct. In fact one of the most terrible parts of this tragedy is that there are people out there who are questioning this, just adding further to the nightmare that the McCann family have suffered. I cannot imagine anything crueller.

I’m afraid I won’t enter into further correspondence on this matter with you. 

Yours sincerely,
 

Philip Edmonds
There lies the key.  A still tongue makes a wise head.

He didn't need to reply to you, he could have ignored your communication.  Why did he reply if not to say those few incriminating words and then conclude with a toss of the head "I'm afraid I won't enter into further correspondence on this matter with you".

cutthroat

Exactly right, @ Verdi.

Don't forget, it was a good bit of sleuthing (not by me) on CMOMM, six years back, that deduced that Philip Edmonds was the bloke being talked about in the newspaper article, which only referred to 'a man on holiday with his three boys'.

Someone (might have been 'Stella'/'StellabyStarlight', she was very good at this sort of thing) then went to work to deduce who that could be...and only one person matched that description - Philip Edmonds.

Then others (again not me) went to work and established...his exalted position in international steel company Stemcor...and his being the nephew of Lady Margaret Hodge and a member of the great Oppenheimer dynasty. 

Then I dug out the Stemcor addresses and wrote the letter.

You are dead right, he could have thrown my letter in the waste paper basket and that would have been that.

I think it's clear from his letter that Edmonds was saying (though he didn't mean to)...


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Add to that, remembering his missive to you was sent in August 2011, he says..

 "I would also not want further conspiracy theories to fester by simply ignoring your letter."

That indicates to me that he'd been following the case, how else would he know about conspiracy theories?  What would it matter to him anyway - a well connected man of business surely has more pressing issues to occupy his mind than the story of a couple of non-entities who were careless enough to lose one of their children.

Plus:   "I can confirm that whatever information I had (including some photos of my sons taken on the day Madeleine disappeared, which showed her in the background) was passed both to the police and to the McCanns at the time".

Was passed both to the police and to the McCanns at the time?  What time - before or after he left Praia da Luz on Friday 4th May?  Why would it occur to him, merely holidaying with his children, that he might/would/did have photographs of his children with Madeleine in the background taken on the day she disappeared?  Why would it occur to him to pass photographs to the police and the McCanns at the time?   Ostensibly, if their story is to believed, the McCanns knew that Madeleine was around so why would they need photographic evidence of that?

Where are the photographs?  Why is this potentially vital information not featured anywhere in the PJ files - not even his name?  Why wasn't he interviewed as a witness having taken a pivotal role upon himself?  The Foster family information is in the files, they volunteered photographic footage - why not this bloke?

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Post by Tennison 15.02.17 5:51

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
To: [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
16 Aug 2011 
From: Philip Edmonds [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
Subject: Madeleine McCann
To: "ajsbennett@btinternet.com" [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
 Date: Tuesday, 16 August, 2011, 8:22

Dear Mr Bennett,

I am in receipt of your letter of 22 July regarding Madeleine McCann. I am sure you would appreciate that it would not be appropriate for me to comment too much, as we do not know each other, and I have no idea what your connection to the case is. However, I would also not want further conspiracy theories to fester by simply ignoring your letter.

Therefore, I can confirm that whatever information I had (including some photos of my sons taken on the day Madeleine disappeared, which showed her in the background) was passed both to the police and to the McCanns at the time. Having been in Portugal at the time of Madeleine’s disappearance and seen all of the events first hand, there is not one shred of doubt in my mind that the events as reported were correct. In fact one of the most terrible parts of this tragedy is that there are people out there who are questioning this, just adding further to the nightmare that the McCann family have suffered. I cannot imagine anything crueller.

I’m afraid I won’t enter into further correspondence on this matter with you. 

Yours sincerely,
 

Philip Edmonds
There lies the key.  A still tongue makes a wise head.

He didn't need to reply to you, he could have ignored your communication.  Why did he reply if not to say those few incriminating words and then conclude with a toss of the head "I'm afraid I won't enter into further correspondence on this matter with you".

cutthroat

Exactly right, @ Verdi.

Don't forget, it was a good bit of sleuthing (not by me) on CMOMM, six years back, that deduced that Philip Edmonds was the bloke being talked about in the newspaper article, which only referred to 'a man on holiday with his three boys'.

Someone (might have been 'Stella'/'StellabyStarlight', she was very good at this sort of thing) then went to work to deduce who that could be...and only one person matched that description - Philip Edmonds.

Then others (again not me) went to work and established...his exalted position in international steel company Stemcor...and his being the nephew of Lady Margaret Hodge and a member of the great Oppenheimer dynasty. 

Then I dug out the Stemcor addresses and wrote the letter.

You are dead right, he could have thrown my letter in the waste paper basket and that would have been that.

I think it's clear from his letter that Edmonds was saying (though he didn't mean to)...


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I believe this is the discussion thread you are referring to Tony.
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Post by Tony Bennett 15.02.17 7:50

Some research I did a few years ago on Philip Edmonds' family background:

---------------


One of the Ocean Club guests, one Philip Martin Edwards, has a fascinating family history. Born on 31 August 1962 according to his entry on Geni.Com, he married Reina Hazenberg and they have three boys, all of whom were out with Philip in Praia da Luz the week the McCanns were there. But not his wife Reina, so it seems.

Visit the website of Stemcor.com, the world's largest steel company, with a turnover measured in billions, and Philip's name again comes up as one of the Board of Directors.

How did Philip Edmonds get so far? A clue is apparent from the same Stemcor.com website: Philip’s Uncle Ralph - Ralph Oppenheimer - is also on the Stemcor Board.

Indeed, Stemcor, as a brief internet search reveals, is an Oppenheimer family business.

All this has come about because Philip's father, Herbert Edmonds, made a wise choice in marrying into the Oppenheimer family. Hannah was the eldest of five children of Hans Oppenheimer and his wife Lisbeth Hollitscher, an Austrian Jewess. Hans was born in Stuttgart, but fled to Alexandria in the mid-1930s, as Hitler's anti-Semitic Nazi regime was stepping up its persecution of Jews, in the lead-up to World War II.

His first four children, including Hannah, were all born in Alexandria, Egypt.

His third child is possibly of most interest to us here in Britain; she was born Margaret Eve Oppenheimer, on 8 September 1944.

In the 1980s, she did two things that made her famous (or infamous). She married Sir Henry Hodge, a left-wing lawyer, and became known as Margaret Hodge. And she became a prominent Labour Councillor in left-wing Islington, where she became notorious for covering up extensive child abuse in what became known as the 'Islington Children's Home Scandal', fully exposed in the 1990s (there's a lot about this on the internet).

In 2003, despite this appalling record, Prime Minister Tony Blair made her Britain's first-ever 'Minister for Children'!

Lady Hodge inherited a substantial slice of the Oppenheimer fortune, and is one of Britain's wealthiest women; despite that, she claimed excessive Parliamentary expenses from us, the British taxpayers.

Philip Edmonds’ father- and mother-in-law aged 81 and 74 respectively live in Bromley, Kent. Hannah's father Hans was the son of Salomon Oppenheimer, born 1871 in Ohringen, west Germany, and in turn Salomon is the son of Abraham Oppenheimer, who in turn was the son of another Abraham Oppenheimer, from one of the many branches of this powerful family.

Edmonds is not an English name, it's an anglicised version of the German Emsheimer. Philip Edmonds' father, Herbert Emsheimer, was born in Karlsruhe, Germany, in 1930, and the family changed their name to Edmonds on arriving in England.

Why Philip Edmonds should choose Praia da Luz as his choice of holiday venue for the week 28 April to 5 May 2007 is not known.



ETA:

The Oppenheimer family tree

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____________________

Dr Martin Roberts: "The evidence is that these are the pjyamas Madeleine wore on holiday in Praia da Luz. They were photographed and the photo handed to a press agency, who released it on 8 May, as the search for Madeleine continued. The McCanns held up these same pyjamas at two press conferences on 5 & 7June 2007. How could Madeleine have been abducted?"

Amelie McCann (aged 2): "Maddie's jammies!".  

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Post by MayMuse 15.02.17 13:06

If PÉ saw events first hand, when was this ? 
And how? 
Did he report what he " saw" to the PJ? 

Did he search for Madeleine, when did he search for Madeleine? On the plane or off, as didn't he fly out of PDL pronto?

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Post by Grande Finale 17.02.17 3:35

If PE gave a photograph of his sons to "Police" which showed Maddie in the background, then why does this photo not appear in the PJ files ??

Which police did he give it to ?

A A PJ Officer
B British Police Officer
C Mccann Pretendy Police
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Post by idon'tbelieveit 29.09.17 23:31

Perhaps the Met could spend some of the extra cash on investigating Phillip & Margaret.
Why was this very wealthy man on holiday at this low cost resort?
Why did he suddendly cut his holiday short?
What does Margaret Hodge know?
When will we see all the photos from the McCanns camera's?

How does the public put pressure on the Met to interview, Phillip, Margaret & the McCanns?
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Post by Rob Royston 30.09.17 22:36

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:Perhaps the Met could spend some of the extra cash on investigating Phillip & Margaret.
Why was this very wealthy man on holiday at this low cost resort?
Why did he suddendly cut his holiday short?
According to guest sheets that have been produced, the Edmund's were always going to leave early. if I remember correctly it was kind of an open ended arrangement outwith Mark Warner's flight bookings.
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Post by Verdi 01.10.17 0:22

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>> Client resides in Switzerland and will most likely not be taking our return flight.  He will let management know on arrival. <<

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Post by BlueBag 01.10.17 7:51

They should be questioned.
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Post by MRoy2020 05.06.19 14:46

More on Margaret Hodge's family here:


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( N.B. I've also cross-posted the above link here
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Post by MRoy2020 05.06.19 14:46

More on Margaret Hodge's family here:


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( N.B. I've also cross-posted the above link here
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Post by MRoy2020 05.06.19 14:55

Seems that one of Margaret Hodge's niece, Sarah Oppenheimer, is a trustee of an organisation called Chem Trust: https://chemtrust.org/trustees/. An interesting organisation, though probably innocuous.
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Post by Verdi 05.06.19 16:18

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] welcome.

Hope you don't mind, I've merged your repeat posts into this one appropriate thread.  There is no need to post the same information on two threads, I'm sure you understand.

Thank you for the information.

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Post by MRoy2020 05.06.19 18:18

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] welcome.

Hope you don't mind, I've merged your repeat posts into this one appropriate thread.  There is no need to post the same information on two threads, I'm sure you understand.

Thank you for the information.
Yes, I totally understand. Thanks for providing this excellent forum for sharing research & discussion.
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Post by Tony Bennett 20.11.19 18:00

This recent article about links between Margaret Hodge and steel firm Stemcor to business activities in apartheid South Africa reminds us once again of what exactly Philip Edmonds, a Stemcor Director, and his three children were doing in Praia da Luz the same week the McCanns were on holiday there in 2007.

And why he claimed to have a photograph of Madeleine playing near his children during Thursday 3 May 2007 - a claim researchers on CMOMM claim to have disproved with their evidence that the Last Photo was taken Sunday, not Thursday. And if he had such a photo, why didn't he produce it, and why isn't it in the PJ files.

Questions that invite answers.

Also see the uncomplimentary reference to the disgraced PR firm, Bell Pottinger, at the end of the article.  

Anyway, here is the article, sent in by a CMOMM member: 

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Dame Margaret Hodge MP – a very British apartheid profiteer
 
Open Secrets
 
18 hours ago
 
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Dame Margaret Hodge.
 
 
Margaret Hodge has clothed herself in the claim that she has dedicated her life to fighting racism – that her very ‘being’ was anti-racist, as she said in March 2019. The facts suggest otherwise.
 
Open Secrets is a non-profit organisation which exposes and builds accountability for private-sector economic crimes through investigative research, advocacy, and the law. See their previous project, Apartheid Guns and Money: A Tale of Profit.
 
It is amazing how many friends and admirers Nelson Mandela had. Particularly after his release. The people and institutions that supported apartheid, while claiming to do the opposite, are foremost among those who deserve, at the very least, a public accounting of their behaviour.
 
In June 1994, only two months after South Africa’s first post-apartheid election, Margaret Hodge gave an interview to the New Statesman. Hodge had just been elected as the Member of the British Parliament for the safe Labour seat of Barking. Asked what had had the greatest impact on her political beliefs, Hodge replied “the ending of apartheid and the holding of democratic elections in South Africa have restored a sense of optimism and hope that I was in danger of losing”. Asked “which political figure –living or dead – do you most admire?” well, you can guess who she answered. (See: ‘Margaret Hodge’, New Statesman, 17 June 1994, p. 13)
 
We can now reveal that her family’s very successful company ran a highly profitable joint-venture partnership in South Africa for the majority of the 1970s and 1980s: precisely the period in which the anti-apartheid movement had called for extensive economic sanctions and disinvestment. For the life of this joint venture, she saw fit to hold shares in the special purpose vehicle that held her family’s slice of the pie.
 
Open Secrets spoke with Alex Conneely Hughes, who works in the office of Margaret Hodge, following repeated attempts via email, WhatsApp and phone to elicit a written response from Hodge to our questions. Hodge conceded that she was aware of her family’s business in apartheid South Africa. According to her spokesperson, Hodge and her sisters protested this in a letter to their father in 1973. We were not provided with a copy of the letter following a request to do so. According to Hodge their father took no heed of this call. She further claimed that all profits she derived from the South African business between 1973-1994 were given to a charity. However, somewhat curiously, Hodge claims through her spokesperson not to have any recollection of the charities to which she donated her apartheid profits for a period of over 20 years. The spokesperson also couldn’t say how Hodge was able to determine what part of her dividends were made up of profits from South Africa and profits from other jurisdictions.
 
And while Hodge may have paid dividends to charities she can’t recall, she chose not to sell shares held in her own name. These shares would have increased in value as her family’s company thrived, including in apartheid South Africa.
 
****
 
Apartheid’s depredations were obvious, many, and utterly vile. This ensured that the international community was in no doubt as to what apartheid was, who was responsible for it, and how soon it needed to be ended. The call for sanctions and disinvestment was loud and clear, and the anti-apartheid movement was diligent in ensuring that lists of international companies with South African subsidiaries were widely distributed. The UN arms embargo against the country, passed in November 1977, was an unambiguous call for all good men and women to cease their support of the racists in Pretoria.
 
Yet apartheid continued – flourished, even – for the 1970s and into 1980s. It did so largely because it was profitable, both for local and international business. The opportunity for making a buck in South Africa on the back of black labour was enticing enough to ensure that the opprobrium shown towards the country on the international stage notwithstanding, the apartheid government never ran short of businesses and governments willing to look the other way.
 
This interplay between public condemnation and private negotiation runs like a stomach-turning thread through all of the relationships we outlined in Apartheid, Guns and Money. Our research showed that during the height of apartheid, Pretoria was able to procure weapons and other materiel in violation of the UN arms embargo from pretty much every country in the world.
 
Apartheid South Africa, due to the pressures placed on it by the anti-apartheid movement, was in constant search for the means to survive in the face of sanctions and other embargoes. Pretoria needed access to foreign currency reserves, oil, raw materials, and new technologies, for which it relied on unscrupulous businesses and professional sanctions-busters. It also needed access to other international markets where they could sell South Africa’s mineral and industrial output. International businesses that could plug South Africa back into the global marketplace, giving it access to foreign currency and the halls of power, were not just gold dust: they were the oil that kept the apartheid machine running.
 
****
 
One of the companies that would make hay under apartheid’s glaring sun was Coutinho, Caro & Co (London) (CCC). CCC had been formed in 1951 by Hans Oppenheimer (no relation to the South African mining family of the same name), a German immigrant who had settled in London following a stint in Egypt, and was a subsidiary of a German steel trader of the same name.
 
Hans Oppenheimer – Margaret Hodge’s father – was joined in managing the company by his son, Ralph (Hodge’s brother), in the late 1960s. Ralph helped to oversee the rapid expansion of the company, which was renamed Stemcor, a contraction of Steel Marketing Corporation, when the family took 100% control in 1987. By 2000 Stemcor had a turnover of £1bn and a decade later was ranked as the third-largest privately owned company by turnover in the whole of the UK.
 
From at least 1973 onwards, the Oppenheimer family held their share of CCC through a special purpose vehicle called Irene Securities. Margaret Watson, as Hodge was then known, held over 6% of the shares in Irene Securities for the remainder of the 1970s and 1980s. (See: 1974 annual report of Coutinho, Caro & Co Limited and annual reports of Irene Securities from 1974 onwards)
 
In 1973, CCC formed a joint venture in South Africa with the multi-sector conglomerate Protea Holdings. The joint venture was called, creatively, Protea International. Company records for Protea International show that in July 1973, the company issued 10,000 shares. CCC held 4,999 “B” shares and Protea Holdings held 4,999 “A” shares – cementing the 50/50 split in ownership between the two companies in Protea International. In addition, CCC was represented on the board of Protea International by Herbert Edmonds, a top CCC company man for close to three decades. (See: Protea International: Return of Allotment of Shares from 28/4/1973 to 30/10/1973 and every Stemcor annual report from 1973 onwards).
 
CCC’s shareholding in Protea International would not go unnoticed by the activist community. The information was not hard to find – Protea International was listed as a subsidiary in every CCC annual report from the year it was formed, as was its location in South Africa. By 1988, the UK-based Anti-Apartheid Movement included CCC and Protea International in a call for the “complete withdrawal of all foreign firms from South Africa and Namibia”, motivated, by “the particular role which foreign investment plays in supporting the apartheid system”. (See: ‘UK Companies and Their Subsidiary or Related Companies in South Africa and Namibia’, Anti-Apartheid Movement, 1988, AAM Archives.)
 
****
 
It is difficult, based on the available documents, to quantify exactly how well Protea International did. The remaining records of Protea International are patchily held in archives in South Africa, and none of the surviving records indicate how much money flowed through the company. The records of CCC, available from Companies House in the UK and considerably more fulsome, provide a limited window. Between 1982 and 1987, CCC’s company statements record turnover by segment and geographical area, including for the whole of Africa. They show that, between 1982 and 1987, CCC recorded a hefty turnover in Africa worth £73,399,554 – equal to £231m in 2019 pounds, or about R4.2bn in 2019 rand. (See: CCC Annual Reports from year-end 1983 to 1987)
 
During this period, CCC also had a subsidiary and office in Kenya, meaning that we cannot calculate the exact proportion of African turnover earned by Protea International. We do know, however, that it would have been very substantial. Indeed, in 1987, in Stemcor’s first annual statement, Ralph Oppenheimer wrote a Chairman’s Statement that provided an overview of the company’s prospects.
 
“Protea International (Pty) Limited had another highly satisfactory year in 1987,” Oppenheimer wrote. “Protea has been one of our most successful investments since we first established the company in 1973 as an equal partnership with Protea Holdings.” (See: “Chairman’s Statement” in Stemcor Annual Report 1988)
 
****
 
Protea International’s success was predicated, at least in part, on its ability to integrate itself into the apartheid economic machine at the highest and most influential levels. In January 1980, South Africa’s Sunday Times newspaper ran a rare and detailed profile of Protea International, giving a unique insight into where and how the company made its money. The profile was written following a South African government-backed trade delegation to South America, which was led by John Kopiski, Protea International’s managing director. (See “Protea Sells R45m to South America”, Sunday Times, 20 January 1980)
 
Initially, Protea International worked primarily as an importer, bringing steel into the South African market. But, from 1976 onwards, this situation was reversed, and the company became a net exporter of South African steel.
 
Like CCC and Stemcor, Protea International produced none of its own steel, rather acting as an international agent for existing steel producers. Protea sourced its steel in South Africa from a number of sources, of which Iscor appears to be most prominent. Iscor was the South African state-owned steel giant and one of the major economic pillars of South Africa’s resource-heavy economy.
 
Protea International’s rapid growth was attributed to its particular acuity in expanding into Central and South America, where, by 1980, it was selling R100m worth of South African steel and other products, serviced by a network of facilities across the continent. For example, Protea International opened marketing offices in Buenos Aires and Sao Paulo – both then under the rule of military dictatorships.
 
The company also maintained permanent representatives in both Peru and apartheid’s ally Chile, run by Augusto Pinochet, a violent dictator. (Ibid) Protea International – and CCC – was thus turning healthy profits selling apartheid steel to Pinochet’s Chile.
 
****
 
For a company formed in 1973, Protea International had, by the late 1970s and early 1980s, reached impressive heights. And while the company may well have been uniquely staffed with excellent salespeople, it must surely also have benefited from the close connections between the apartheid regime and its other parent company, with whom CCC had got into bed in 1973: Protea Holdings.
 
From its very earliest days, Protea Holdings, a sizeable industrial conglomerate, could count on the support of Richard Lurie, who would become a major investor and director. Lurie, who died in 2007, was the archetypal self-made man. Starting as a lowly “tea boy” at the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE), he eventually worked his way up the ladder and was appointed president of the JSE on four occasions between the 1960s and 1980s.
 
Archival documents show that Lurie’s prominence extended into the heart of the apartheid political and military machine. In April 1980, Lurie was invited to join the so-called Defence Advisory Council for two years by PW Botha, at the time the prime minister of South Africa. It was under Botha’s watch, first as minister of defence and then prime minister, that apartheid’s military machine expanded to eventually swallow a substantial portion of South Africa’s economic output – and in which the military would wreak havoc in Angola and Mozambique and be mobilised to put down the protests in the townships.
 
In the letter, Botha justified the appointment of the council by citing the “escalating military situation in southern Africa and the possible consequences for the RSA in combating this threat, especially with regard to the effect this may have on the economy and manpower situation”. (See: Open Secrets collection: South African History Archive)
 
Incidentally, the man listed below Lurie in the invitation letter was none other than Basil Hersov. Hersov, a darling of the apartheid business world and a military man himself, was one of the agents paid millions in commissions by BAE Systems in the infamous 1999 Arms Deal – itself a live and active cautionary tale of how apartheid corruption continues to infect the present.
 
Unsurprisingly for a company that turned a profit under apartheid, Protea Holdings was linked to serious gross human rights violations in the 1970s. In 1971, for example, the South African Institute of Race Relations conducted a survey which found that Protea Holdings was found to be paying poverty wages to its black staff. (See: Ruth First, Jonathan Steele and Christabel Gurney, 1972, The South African Connection: Western Investment in Apartheid, Maurice Temple Smith: London)
 
But a far more grisly – and public – story would come to prominence in 1975. The roots of the story stretched back to 1963, when the South African government agreed to allow private companies to set up psychiatric camps on its behalf. By 1975, 11,000 mentally ill patients were housed in these private camps, of which 9,000 were black. Public leaks, parliamentary questions in the UK and a detailed investigation in the UK’s Observer, revealed the horror of the prevailing conditions. Black patients were made to sleep 30 to a room on flimsy mats. They were treated by part-time physicians with ghoulish attitudes to African psychiatry. The death rates were terrifying: in 1973 at one facility called Randwest, 207 of the 3,200 black inmates died.
 
The source of the influx of black patients was equally disturbing. By and large the populations of the camps were made up of the detritus of apartheid’s devastation, “those who are found wandering, drunk, or collapsed in the streets”. A brief review by a white psychiatrist and a rubber stamp from a magistrate was all that was required to declare the thousands of black Africans insane, rather than simply indigent. After being admitted, they were put to work, making leg irons and coat-hangers, or sent out as a private labouring army.
 
Contemporaneous investigators dug deep to find the primary corporate power behind the camps — a company called Intrinsic Investments, of which Lurie was a director. According to an investigation in the US, led by the Congressional Black Caucus, Intrinsic “was linked to Protea Holdings, specialising in chemicals, drugs, hospitals and medical supplies”.
 
The story reared its head again in 1979, following a series of site visits by the American Psychiatric Association, the results of which were again reported on in the UK’s Observer. Their investigation concluded that “these findings substantiate allegations of social and political abuse of psychiatry in South Africa”. (See: Scandal of the Money-Making Mental Homes’, Observer, 3 Jun 1979)
 
Giving an interview to the journal Science News, the association’s President Alan Stone, who led the visits, commented further that “the most shocking finding of our investigation was the high number of needless deaths among black patients. There was evidence of patients being allowed to die who had treatable illnesses”. (See: “South African Snake Pits: For Blacks Only”, Science News, Vol 115, No. 21, 26 May 1979)
 
So, at the very time that CCC was working with the apartheid government and Protea Holdings to grow their business, their partner, Intrinsic Investments, was being publicly linked to serious human rights violations in both the South African and British press.
 
****
 
“Why Margaret Hodge?”, you may be asking. Aren’t there other examples of equally, if not more, egregious profiteering and double-speak? Hodge symbolises the historical relation between South Africa and Britain which was built on extraction and the creation of wealth in the United Kingdom. From the extraction of minerals built on the brutal migrant labour system to the British government and elite attitudes towards apartheid – there was always a great sympathy for oppression in this country from far away. Some mealy-mouthed objections aside, Britain was the largest foreign direct investor in the apartheid period, and, when it really mattered, Pretoria could rely on Thatcher and the Tories to back the regime.
 
There is much to put at the door of the British in the post-apartheid period, too. It was BAE Systems, receiving the full diplomatic support of the British government, which was the biggest beneficiary of the Arms Deal. It was also the biggest payer of bribes. Documentary evidence shows that the company was ruthless in finding officials and politically connected comrades to bribe as apartheid ended.
 
It was Bell Pottinger, a British company set up by Thatcher’s spin doctor, which tried to stoke racial discord in defence of the Guptas’ outright looting of the South African purse. In a remarkable turn of events, it was Fana Hlongwane, the most well-known agent paid by BAE Systems in the Arms Deal, who introduced the Guptas to Bell Pottinger on the recommendation of a former BAE executive.
 
This culture of unaccountability in the relations between South Africa and Britain must come to an end. It is time that the British Labour party, its leader Jeremy Corbyn and her electorate hold Hodge accountable for knowingly profiteering at such great human cost. Hodge has clothed herself in the claim that she has dedicated her life to fighting racism – that her very “being” was anti-racist, as she said in March 2019. The facts suggest otherwise. DM

____________________

Dr Martin Roberts: "The evidence is that these are the pjyamas Madeleine wore on holiday in Praia da Luz. They were photographed and the photo handed to a press agency, who released it on 8 May, as the search for Madeleine continued. The McCanns held up these same pyjamas at two press conferences on 5 & 7June 2007. How could Madeleine have been abducted?"

Amelie McCann (aged 2): "Maddie's jammies!".  

Tony Bennett
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philip edmonds - Philip Edmonds, Deputy Chairman of Stemcor, and nephew of Lady Margaret Hodge - Pictures of Madeleine, and the letters between Tony Bennett & Philip Edmonds in 2011   - Page 3 Empty Re: Philip Edmonds, Deputy Chairman of Stemcor, and nephew of Lady Margaret Hodge - Pictures of Madeleine, and the letters between Tony Bennett & Philip Edmonds in 2011

Post by sar 20.11.19 23:21

"It was Bell Pottinger, a British company set up by Thatcher’s spin doctor, which tried to stoke racial discord in defence of the Guptas’ outright looting of the South African purse. In a remarkable turn of events, it was Fana Hlongwane, the most well-known agent paid by BAE Systems in the Arms Deal, who introduced the Guptas to Bell Pottinger on the recommendation of a former BAE executive.
 
This culture of unaccountability in the relations between South Africa and Britain must come to an end. It is time that the British Labour party, its leader Jeremy Corbyn and her electorate hold Hodge accountable for knowingly profiteering at such great human cost. Hodge has clothed herself in the claim that she has dedicated her life to fighting racism – that her very “being” was anti-racist, as she said in March 2019. The facts suggest otherwise."


Particularly damning
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