Military imposter exposed
Wednesday, 29 June 2005
"Chuck" Walters has been exposed as a military
imposter by the Coalition of Patriots for
Military Honour [CPMH].
He has resigned as
Merimbula's Royal Volunteer Coastal Patrol
Mr Walters has admitted
that the information on his military service,
published in a News Weekly report, headlined
"Chuck the new RVCP commander" on April 13,
In the interview the
article was based on, Mr Walters said that he
had spent more than 33 years in the US
military before retiring as a full Colonel in
He claimed to have spent
two years on submarines, made two tours of
Vietnam, been involved in Grenada in 1983,
Panama in 1989 and in later operations in
He also said he had served
time with the Australian Department of Defence
and the American Embassy.
Mr Walters, 59, provided a
letter to the News Weekly on Monday, which
"I wish to make a full and
unequivocal retraction of any and all my
comments related to the article about myself
which appeared in the Merimbula News Weekly on
"The information I provided
"I humbly apologise to any
and all persons I may have offended by
comments and actions."
It is signed Russell
Walters, Tura Beach.
Mr Walters' apology came
hours before he was exposed on the CPMH
website, www.cpmh.net, as a bogus veteran.
He is listed on the site
But while he has apologised
to the News Weekly and the public, CPMH
investigator, Max Greevey, said it was going
to take further action from Mr Walters before
his case was removed from the site.
"Chuck will need to write
letters of apology to the Vietnam Veterans of
Australia, The RSL, the US Marine Corps, the
US Embassy for starters," Mr Greevey said.
"Once we have these letters
we contact the parties involved and ascertain
whether his apologies are accepted.
"Should they all deign his
contrition is deep enough - he will be removed
from CPMH - with a staunch warning that should
he tread the same path again he will remain on
the site for life," he said.
CPMH is an association of
Vietnam veterans from all services and ranks
that exposes and brings federal charges
against those who falsely seek military
Most members have more than
20 years of military service.
The CPMH investigated Mr
Walters' history after the News Weekly article
sparked outrage from Victorian RSL members,
who said they knew Mr Walters for more than 10
years from the late 1960s, a time when Mr
Walters had said he was working for the US
Continued from page1
The CPMH investigations
showed that he had joined the Ringwood RSL, in
Victoria, on June 20, 1968, where he was a
member until 1990, was secretary of the
Ringwood RSL sub-branch in 1975-76, and
transferred to East Malvern RSL in 1990, where
he was a member until 1993.
These revelations uncovered
inconsistencies in Mr Walters' claims,
particularly his 33 years of military service.
The CPMH contacted the News
Weekly with this information and the newspaper
conducted its own inquiries into Mr Walters'
On June 22, Mr Walters
spoke to the News Weekly and stood by his
words, stating that all the information in the
April 13 article was correct.
He showed the News Weekly
paperwork on his service with the US Navy and
Marine Corps from 1962 to 1967.
He could not, however,
provide proof or confirmation of his
operations from 1968 to 1995, saying he was
not allowed to talk about it.
Mr Walters said his
movements with the US Military over this time
were confidential and must stay secret.
He would not let the News
Weekly keep any copies of his military service
papers and would not allow the interview to be
Mr Walters said he
regretted his original comments to the News
"I shouldn't have expanded
so much on my military career.
"But I was proud of my
appointment and, in the moment, I said too
"In hindsight, I wish I
hadn't said anything," he said.
Mr Walters then handed a
signed letter of apology to the News Weekly on
A statement released by the
Merimbula Coastal Patrol the same day said Mr
Walters had taken the view that his position
would have become untenable as a result of
"Chuck's brief tenure as
commander was characterised by his dedication
and administrative skills and the unfortunate
circumstances surrounding his resignation are
regretted by all.
"The patrol, however, is a
valuable Merimbula asset and must be protected
for the important part it plays in our
"Its members will continue
to work in the best interests of that
community and with the highest standards of
integrity and professionalism," the statement
Jim Hinde is now the
Merimbula Coastal Patrol's acting commander.
Far South Coast Coastal
Patrol captain Jim Greenshield, who oversees
coastal patrol operations from Batemans Bay to
the border, was one of the officials who
interviewed Mr Walters for the position of
He had given Mr Walters his
full support and said, "In my point of view,
he [was] performing well as divisional
Mr Greenshield said Mr
Walters' military history had played no part
in landing the position with the patrol.
"The main criterion for the
position is management skills," he said. "And
from what we gathered in the interview, we
believed Chuck had the necessary training and
skills for the job."
Under the Defence Act, it
is a federal offence to wrongly claim to be a
returned soldier, sailor or airman, and a
proven offence can result in up to six months
imprisonment and a fine of up to $3300.
It is an offence to wear a
service decoration to which a person is not
entitled. This may attract additional
The CPMH website says:
"Worst still is the insult to genuine veterans
of any conflict, who find their courage,
honour and valour stolen by imposters both
from within and outside their ranks.
"Each time a military
imposter is left 'unexposed', it cheapens the
value of every true hero, and cheapens the
sacrifice that every genuine service-person
and veteran makes.
"The imposter has ruined
his own life with his lies."