Medal Cheats

Medal Cheats

Surname: Bright
Christian Names: Edward James
Country: Australia
State or Province: Victoria
City or Town: Hawthorn/Wangaratta
Service #: 374464
Service: CMF
Branch: Infantry
Case Notes:


Edward James Bright was the President of the Hawthorn, Melbourne Branch, of the Returned and Services League (RSL). Members of the Hawthorn Branch became disenchanted with his leadership, and through constitutional means, successfully launched action to have him removed.

Bright is also involved with the Melbourne Tramways Brass Band and used the Hawthorn RSL as a practice venue for the band. There is no evidence of payment by the band for the use of the facility

He initiated the journey to his "Waterloo" by not allowing current, and recent serving members, to join "his" RSL Sub Branch. This was opposite to current RSL objectives and principles, and very insulting to potential members, most of whom have returned from active service

Those insulted by Bright's lack of empathy, were able to initiate democratic action at the sub branch that had him removed from office, we believe with ignominy. Investigations into Bright's background indicated that as well as his attitude towards membership he lacked military credentials to be a member of an RSL .

Since his departure One Hundred and Seventy Five new service members have been enrolled at the Hawthorn RSL.

ANZMI became aware of the problems at Hawthorn RSL and launched an investigation.

A problem was, that Bright consistently refused to provide any details of his military service. The information would curtail any investigation, and allow him the privilege of being an RSL service member.

It was significant and concerning, that Bright could not remember his regimental number.

Eventually information was sought through RSL channels and a regimental number 374464 was produced. The number was used by Bright on RSL membership documents.


All army personnel records for the era of service claimed by Bright, are available from National Australia Archives (NAA). There are no NAA records, listing Bright, or any other person having served in the Army, using that regimental number.

An independent and skilled researcher discovered the following:

"Research regarding that name and regimental number, found no military service for any person with the Regimental Number 374464 There were documents found that show that Edward James Bright completed a National Service registration form, however, he never served as a National Serviceman. In addition, with the National Service document there is a letter from him requesting to be withdraw from a Citizens Military Forces (CMF) service obligation".

All that was asked of Bright, was that he produce evidence to support his claim that he served with CMF 1st Battalion, Royal Victorian Regiment (RVR) in the early 1970s. He refused to do that, and threatened legal action against any person who doubted his "service"
Throughout Australia, RSL Service membership is available to current and former members of the Australian Defence Force and Allied Armed Forces who give a minimum of six months service. All Bright needed to do was prove his service. He refuses to do that simple task, and obviously he was not required to produce his credentials when he originally joined the Hawthorn RSL in 1998.

It is scandalous that Bright was a Service Member of the Hawthorn RSL, and rose to be the President without proof of his service.

In addition to Bright, and aiding and abetting him, is the ex Secretary of the Hawthorn RSL who refuses to communicate with our researchers. An investigation is also pending regarding his bona fides for RSL membership.

To date, Bright's only defence is that "he gave twenty years of hard work to the RSL and is distressed that his credentials should be questioned".

Any person falsely claiming military service for the purpose of joining the RSL is well deserved of the being named and shamed. Credentials of military service, and the kudos of being an RSL President are not to be usurped by those pretending to have served.

There have been other Victoria RSL senior executives "defrocked" by ANZMI over the years. A prominent pretender was:

Mr Lance Mailer Smith See here:

Bright is now enlisted into the hall of shame as a soldier of ANZMI, where he will remain for eternity. It is unfortunate, for Bright that ANZMI membership does not entitle him to RSL membership
Surname: Bryant
Christian Names: James Maxwell
Country: Australia
State or Province: Victoria
City or Town: Hastings
Case Notes:


ames Maxwell "Max" Bryant is an ex fisherman from Hastings, on the Eastern side of the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria

Notice Bryant wears a Centenary Medal which was awarded to him in January 2001 for initiating the Western Port Oberon Association. After procuring an Oberon class submarine he has been the mover and shaker in creating a community Submarine museum that attracts a lot of attention.

Bryant also wears a Sub Mariners Dolphin Badge, which he has no right to wear. It is not a "pretty badge" to be worn by civilians, it indicates serious Royal Australian Navy (RAN) service under difficult conditions.

The Dolphin badge indicates elite service and is a prestigious badge.

Not everyone in the Navy gets the honour of wearing it. The Navy’s ‘Silent Service’ has a proud tradition of selecting the best personnel from candidates who volunteer to serve in this complex specialisation.

Potential submariners are required to complete more training than those serving on surface ships. Additional training is required in many facets of the platform from systems and services to damage control and escape. Upon selection as a submariner, members complete an Initial Collins Class Course at the Submarine Training and Systems Centre at HMAS Stirling followed by Submarine Specific Category training in their chosen trade.

This complex training is then put into a practical assessment on board a submarine and all members must complete a Basic Submarine Qualification Task Book (commonly known as the Part 3).

The compilation of the Task Book requires each task to be assessed by the Deputy Head of the applicable trades department and a theoretical qualification board. After initial training and specific category training, which can vary significantly, the Task Book is usually completed within a further 16-week period.

After qualifying, Submariners then embark on a career of arduous classified operations, which gives them the privilege of wearing the Dolphin Badge

A look at Bryant's LinkedIn account also contains an exaggeration of achievements

He lists his accomplishments as a civilian fisherman with a little exaggeration thrown in. He says that he was: "Fleet Manager of Allied Fisheries with 48 boats at sea" We are reliably advised that he was never more that a skipper of one of the "48 boats" many of which were located in Tasmania.

It is incongruous that Submarine Veterans associated with the museum have condoned Bryant wearing the Dolphin badge, when he has never served in the RAN.

We have listed others on this website who have falsely worn this badge. They are:


Genuine sub mariners, and all associated with Western Port Oberon association, are urged to not allow James Maxwell Bryant to wear the Dolphin badge, as if he were an ex RAN Sub Mariner.

James Maxwell Bryant is welcomed aboard HMAS ANZM where he can swap stories with others (listed above) who have fraudulently worn the badge

Footnote: Despite the behaviour of the Curator, be aware that a visit to the Museum is a worthwhile experience:

Surname: Burow
Christian Names: Graeme Robert
Country: Australia
State or Province: Queensland
City or Town: Aspley (Brisbane)
Service #: Nil
Service: Nil
Branch: Nil
Case Notes:


Exactly who is Commander Graeme Robert BUROW, RAN? Well, in the mind of Graeme BUROW, he is a highly respected Legal Officer and senior officer in the Royal Australian Navy. In fact, BUROW is a fraud, wannabe and thief who is more deserving of being in the dock, rather than on the legal benches.

BUROW joins a long list of false pretenders on our pages who have used false military service to defraud unsuspecting people of their hard-earned money or steal their affections.

The BUROW naval adventure makes for great reading, if you are into fictional stories. He claims to have served in the regular Navy as a Navigational Officer for several years. During this ‘period of service’, he claims to have led boarding parties on a number of occasions and has been recognised for gallantry during such actions.

After his hectic life on the high seas, BUROW claims he left the Navy and found himself working for a taxi company. During this time, BUROW created for himself a couple of fancy qualifications including a Bachelor of Information Technology and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Technology.

Apparently, such a highly qualified legal advocate was quite happy to work for a taxi company than to actually ‘hang his shingle’ and practice law, but that is just one great anomaly with his story.

It seems BUROW is such a good Lawyer, that the Navy decided (or so he says) to return him to uniform as a Commander no less and a Legal Officer to boot. His social media communications with friends indicate that he was so needed by the Navy, they even waived his Selection Board and he was more than happy to accept praise for his appointment as Commander.

We hold Statutory Declarations confirming all of his false claims of military service and legal qualifications.

The fact is, Burow is a fraud and a valour thief. Like so many on our website, he has created a false military career in order to win the heart of the opposite sex. There is no record of Burow every having served in the Australian Defence Force, let alone as a Commissioned Officer.

We can only hope that any ladies who have the misfortune to meet Graeme Burow do not get sucked into to his web of lies. A quick Google search before meeting him will prevent years of heartache and stress.

Welcome aboard the good ship ANZMI, "Commander".

Surname: Hyde
Christian Names: Joshua Richard
Country: Australia
State or Province: Western Australia
City or Town: Perth
Service #: None
Service: None
Case Notes:


Joshua Richard Hyde made an error of judgement when he spread the word, to at least four reputable people, that he is an ex Commando from the Australian Defence Force. Those four people have provided Statutory Declarations relating to what he had told them.

The above photo of Hyde was taken when he was on private business in the Philippines, where he chose to wear Army uniform, complete with Australian flag on the shoulder.

Here are excerpts from what is listed on the Statutory Declarations.


"Declared himself as a former serving member of the Australian Defence Force.

Served as a Commando in the Australian Army and specialised in Psychological Operations (PsyOps)

Claimed to be a former member of Special Forces in the Australian Defence Force.

Has been in combat in Africa and Afghanistan.

Regularly wore tactical clothing and Army issue sun glasses.

Gave advice on how to prepare physically and mentally for Army entry, based on his experience.

Claimed to have had direct entry into the Army as a Commando.

Said on occasion that he "skipped" Army recruit training at Kapooka and on another occasions said he did attend Kapooka.

Claimed to have served for differing periods of service from two years to three months.

Claims he has Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) caused by his service.

Claims to have participated in counter terrorist operations, both as a Commando and a private contractor"

Despite the content of the properly prepared and signed four Statutory Declarations, Hyde vehemently denies ever uttering to any person that he has served in the Australian Army. Here is his defence:

"Please regard this email as my official response and statement to your research calls regarding my alleged service in the ADF.

At no time have I served or being a part of the ADF. I have not made statements of serving domestically or overseas with the ADF.

I do work in the defence sector with technology and have done for some time. I have worked in development with Australian Special Forces elements but not anyone from Commando so not sure where these have come from. I mentioned to someone going through ADF recruitment I wanted at one point to do direct entry in my 20's as I was offered at a YOU session and initial testing but to my knowledge at that time my friend asked about it but the program didn't exist from apprently poor success so wasn't sure if it was still available.

I have also worked with international police and defence agencies on the basis of armour technology and other procurement but as a private entity only. The photos on my Facebook page were of training and testing for products done with Philippines national police, as well as apparel/uniforms that were trialled there. These were clearly labelled as what was happening and made no reference to defence service. I have since taken these down. I was wearing the multicam uniform on the range but this was not ADF uniform. I wore an Australian velcro flag that was given to me by a friend who did serve as to represent being Australian. I have never worn service attire.

I am troubled to where these claims have come from or that 4 statutory declarations have come to you regarding the matter.

Aside from working on composite armour technology and some time in procurement that has been my only relationship to defence.

Given that these claims are potentially damaging to my reputation and slanderous I would like to know through my rights to information how to approach this legally should this escalate, and where there is proof of me allegedly making these claims aside from a stat dec. In all fairness it's easy for people to put something together based on he said she said but hard to defend it. The only thing I can recommend is passing contacts for some references who are current or ex Defence can attest to my character, would this be helpful? I know you have had one defence contact who has vouched for my character. This seems to be a head hunt from someone I've upset."

We have no doubt that Hyde has made ridiculous claims about Army service and those claims have now come back to bite him on his posterior.

All over Australia and New Zealand, defence veterans, ex service persons and civilians, are aware of the never diminishing abundance of "wannabes" who lie about military service.

Where ever these people appear, they are reported to ANZMI who expose them. We are sure that Hyde enjoyed the kudos of being a "Commando veteran" and we hope he now enjoys the shame of being exposed on this website.

Surname: Mouat
Christian Names: Cameron
Country: New Zealand
State or Province: .
City or Town: Christchurch
NZ -Which Island:
  • South Island
Service #: None
Service: None
Branch: None
Case Notes:


On any commemorative occasion in Christchurch NZ, Cameron Mouat would be considered to be a service veteran when he stands tall among genuine veterans.

In fact, Mouat has never served in any Defence Force. The medals he wears belonged to his father who served with Royal New Zealand Navy during World War 2. Unfortunately the photograph is too blurred to be able to individually identify them.

Executives from The Royal New Zealand Returned and Services' Association (RSA) have counseled Mouat but he declines to heed their advice.

Here are excerpts from the NZ Honours and Awards.

Perhaps Mouat made an error when he first wore the medals on his left breast. His error was compounded when he refused to adjust after counseling by RSA executives.

Through his recalcitrance he has earned a place on this website, where we will exhibit his deliberate offence for ever more. It is likely he will re-offend, if so, we urge those who notice his defiance to point and laugh.

Surname: Milford
Christian Names: Donald William
Country: Australia
State or Province: Northern Territory
City or Town: Darwin
Service #: R57781
Service: Royal Australian Navy
Commencement of service: 1961
Case Notes:


48 seconds is all it took for Donald MILFORD to make a mockery of his service and turn a distinguished ex-serviceman into a valour thief.

Donald MILFORD was born 0n 26 October 1943 and joined the Navy in 1961 a few months short of his 18th Birthday. All the evidence points to MILFORD having enjoyed a notable career in the Navy and was the recipient of British Empire Medal (BEM) in the Military Division when holding the rank of Chief Petty Officer.

MILFORD is a senior member of the RSL in Darwin and has responsibility for organising commemorative ceremonies in his capacity as Director of Commemorations. Unfortunately, rather than being satisfied with a career in the Royal Australian Navy which included tours to Vietnam aboard HMA Ships Parramatta and Sydney he couldn’t resist the opportunity, when he sat in front of a microphone to embellish this service with a hint of ‘daring do’.

MILFORD was interviewed by ABC Radio in Darwin and reflected on Remembrance Day and his own War Service.

(click on the link below to hear the interview)

File Attachment:

File Name: 1911111800...1-27.mp3
File Size:1,136 KB

Unfortunately, his recollection of events is not matched by the records. As a 17-year-old Naval Rating with 40 days service in Vietnamese waters it is extremely doubtful that he went ashore, let alone had any experience with ‘tunnels’ and it is this simple statement that sees MILFORD "Hoisted with his own petard" . MILFORD’s Service Records are clear, he joined the Navy in 1961 at age 17. His tours of Vietnam occurred in 1968 when he would have been at least 25 years old.

He joins a growing list of former members of the Navy on our website who performed ‘secret missions’ whilst in Vietnamese waters.

His claim is offensive to the memory of the brave men who performed the highly dangerous role during the war. The Tunnel Rats are the men who served in the Engineer Field Troops in Vietnam (3 Field Troop and 1, 2 and 3 Troop of 1 Field Squadron, Royal Australian Engineers).

Over the years there have been many “wannabes” and pretenders to the title “Tunnel Rat”, but it is only the men who served in those Field Troops who can carry that title. These are the men who went bush with the Amoured Corp and Infantry, staying out bush for four to six weeks, operating as Infantary plus carrying out our specialist duties of mine and booby trap detection and clearing, tunnel and bunker searching and demolition, plus bomb disposal.

Perhaps it was a lapse in judgment that made MILFORD make this outrageous claim, but to do so in a radio interview, for all to hear is unacceptable to the Veterans community. For this simple indiscretion, Donald MILFORD has earned a place on this website and becomes a reminder to any ex-serviceman or women who might consider embellishing their service history that someone is always watching out for ‘wannabes’.


"Hoisted with his own petard" is a phrase from a speech in William Shakespeare's play Hamlet that has become proverbial. The phrase's meaning is literally that the bomb-maker (a "petard" is a small explosive device) is blown up ("hoisted" off the ground) by his own bomb, and indicates an ironic reversal, or poetic justice.

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