Entries with Surname (Title)s starting with 'F'

Surname: Finlay
Christian Names: John Bernard
Country: Australia
State or Province: New South Wales
City or Town: Forestville
Service #: R94417
Service: Royal Australian Navy
Branch: Stores Assistant
Commencement of service: 04 Jul 64
Completion of service: Unknown
Case Notes:



John Bernard Finlay joined the Royal Australian Navy on 4 July 1964, as a Junior Recruit. His first sea posting, as a newly trained Stores Assistant, was on HMAS Derwent, where he saw operational service in Vietnam, and as part of the Far East Strategic Reserve (FESR).

Finlay later joined the HMAS Sydney, being deployed a number of times to Vietnam in the vital logistics role the ship was conducting at the time.

Finlay 1


The above photograph is one of many taken over several years. In each photograph, Finlay is involved in some prominent role at an ANZAC Day or Remembrance Day service as a member of the Forestville RSL Sub-Branch.

Finlay is wearing the following medals:

  1. Australian Active Service Medal (AASM) 1945-75
  2. Vietnam Logistic Support Medal (VLSM)
  3. Australian Service Medal 1945-75
  4. Australian Defence Medal
  5. HMAS Sydney Commemorative Medal
  6. FESR Commemorative Medal

Six medals look quite impressive, however, it is the last two medals that bring the attention to Finlay.

Finlay 2


The last two medals are quite simply junk and have no place being displayed with official medals, that is the well-known protocol.

The HMAS Sydney Commemorative was produced by a service association, aggrieved at the lack of recognition for the role they played in providing logistic support to Australian forces in Vietnam. This was later rectified by the award of the VLSM, under the official Australian Honours and Awards system.

The last medal, commemorating service with the FESR, seems to be worn by those wanting to make their row of medals look that little bit more impressive. However, service with the FESR was adequately recognised through the official awarding of the Australian Service Medal 1945-75, with clasp ‘FESR’.

Finlay has also attached campaign clasps to those pieces of tin, perhaps making him seem, in his eyes anyway, like a well-worn veteran. That said, it is a shame he has not attached the clasp VIETNAM to his AASM 1945-75, where it rightfully belongs.

Finlay 3


In the above photograph Finlay is pictured with Robin Geoffrey Tapp, who also appears on the pages of ANZMI. Both are often photographed together at ANZAC Day and Remembrance services. Perhaps ‘birds of a feather’ would be an appropriate tagline to those pictures.

Finlay, a Stores Assistant, and Tapp, a Steward, were part of the Navy Supply and Secretariat Branches, which also included Cooks and Writers.

This is of note, as a perusal of the ANZMI entries reveals that members of this branch of the Navy comprise a majority of entries for the seagoing arm of our Defence Force. Why is this? Did they feel that their service was not as important as that of a Gunner or Engineer, so those few extra dodgy medals get them a little more recognition?

In 2015, Finlay was awarded Life Membership in recognition of his many years of service to the RSL.

What will Finlay be awarded for his disrespect and dishonesty? Likely there will be no action, as it appears his charade has continued for many years, right under the noses of the Sub-Branch executive, even though medal protocol is well known and communicated throughout the RSL.

Surname: Fishlock
Christian Names: Barry Robert
Country: Australia
State or Province: WA
City or Town: Perth
Service #: None
Service: None
Branch: None
Commencement of service: None
Completion of service: None
Case Notes:




Barry Robert Fishlock born 28 February 1964 is a wannabe of the "Love Rat" genre who claims false and heroic Special Forces military service to excuse his contemptible behaviour. We have several of Fishlock's ilk on this web site who have lied to and stolen from vulnerable women.  Here are some of them:  Jenkins, Montgomery, Loveridge, Gwilliams, Shakespeare, Montague-Elliot, Stoove, Bennetts and Boxshall.

We have not been able to find evidence of Fishlock ever having served in the Australian Defence Force.  That finding is strengthened by reading his confession of his achievements, skill and courage during his military deployments.  Here are examples from Statutory Declarations:

“He described, in detail, a career in the Special Forces spanning six years.  The first two serving in the British Forces and the next four in the Australian Forces, first in Canberra and then in Perth at Swanbourne Barracks. He mentioned a few of the regiments he had been in, including the SAS and the Queen's Honour Guard.

During his service he reached the rank of Captain and was deployed on missions behind enemy lines.

He said his "Post Traumatic Stress Disorder"  (PTSD) down to his being captured and held twice in a two year period, once for about twelve hours (somewhere in Asia) and another for three days (this was said to have happened in Libya). These events were said to have taken place sometime between the mid 80's and early 90's.

His descriptions of the torture he endured at the hands of his captors were enough to bring tears to the eyes. The described the torture as having most of his fingers on one hand broken and toe nails torn out.  He was "water boarded" and had his teeth drilled.  He had a gun put to his head and the trigger pulled, then he was laughed at because the gun was not loaded.

He was awarded three medals for his service. On Standard Service Medal. A Conspicuous Service Medal and The Medal for Gallantry.  All three of these medals were thrown away because of his shame.

His shame related to being ordered to enter foreign  territory covertly to find and kill certain "targets".  He took the lives of eleven people all enemies of Australia and her Allies. The "targets" were all monsters guilty of atrocities against not only allied soldiers, but civilian men. women and children as well.

The children and female  victims of his targets were rounded up like cattle and sold into the sex slave trade to fund rebel and terrorist movements. The male victims were hung as examples to the other villagers not to deal with foreign soldiers”.

Fishlock also plays the "Nightmare" card and does the tricks of waking up in "the horrors" from reliving his  "war experiences".   His PTSD precluded him from working and he managed to live free of charge with a women for around three years. 

Fishlock was hospitalised during that time with a minor stroke.  When it was suggested  that he should seek assistance from The Department of Veterans (DVA) Affairs for both his stroke and his war caused PTSD, he explained as follows:

“He was covertly sent to an unfriendly country to procure a Very Important Person (VIP) who he brought out of the country under heavy pursuit. When he got back to base and had written up his mission report he could overhear his VIP being tortured at which point he "snapped" and attacked his superiors and had to be restrained. He was hospitalised for six weeks and was threatened with a Dishonourable Discharge unless he let the matter drop and resign.  Because of that betrayal he would have nothing from Department of Veterans Affairs”.

His proof of service was in a single document that showed he had been trained in Self Defence at Swanbourne Barracks by "Sgt Philip Stevenson".  The Special Air Service Regiment (SASR) did not provide such silly documents.

Another interesting photograph shows Fishlock standing over a "dead body". This photograph was taken on one of his "missions".

Fishlock lives in a dream world, portraying himself as a battle weary and damaged Special Forces soldier.  He plays out his fantasies to gain benefits from people who can ill afford to have him sapping  their  income and emotional energy. 

People like Fishlock have no redeeming qualities they are liars, frauds, wannabes and parasites who trade on the emotions of others. We suggest that a watch be kept for this person, as those of his ilk bounce from one free feed to another.

He is a parasite worthy of a place on this web site.










Surname: Fitzgerald
Christian Names: Mark James
Country: Australia
State or Province: ACT
City or Town: Canberra
Service: Army Reserve
Branch: Trainee
Case Notes:

Mark James FitzGerald is one of the new breed of liars cheats and wannabes. He claims to be an Operation hardened, Infantry Non Commissioned Officer (NCO) who served Somalia and East Timor, Iraq, Afghanistan and the Solomon Islands.



You will notice in the photo below he is wearing only three medals even though he claims deployment to five areas of operations. The three medals are from left to right;



The Australian Active Service medal 1975 with two clasps (not entitled)

Australian Defence Force Medal (not entitled)

United Nations Medal for East Timor UNAMET/UNTAET (not entitled)

UNAMET United Nations Assistance Mission in East Timor

UNTAET United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor

Infantry Combat Badge (not entitled)

To support his deceit he produced false Service Record documents as seen below.



We know all these documents are false, as we have had them checked out by various retired ex-servicemen who have knowledge on the Defence Force recording system for service records. We were advised the layout is incorrect and there is information missing that would be on an original service record.

Below is another fake  document, “Trained Rifleman Certificate” also produced by FitzGerald.


On his own admission FitzGerald only did 2 years Army Reserves. We have been advised by a reliable source that he never completed Recruit Training; therefore he would not have qualified as a trained Rifleman in the Royal Australian Infantry Corps (RAINF) at an Army Reserve Unit. He had not qualified in any courses and was only a Trainee on discharge.

All these documents have been created by FitzGerald for the purpose of receiving a benefit by presenting them to prospective employers as being a true record of his Military Service.

FitzGerald did serve with the Australian Defence Force but in fact did not graduate from Recruit Training with Army Reserve.

Below is from his LinkedIn page where he claims his false deployments and medals he is entitled to but yet only wears three medals. The reason he is only wearing three medals can only be put down to the fact that a number of medal Dealers now ask for proof of service to show the person is entitled to those medals.

Australian Army

Government Agency; 10,001+ employees; Military industry

January 1990 – October 2003 (13 years 10 months) HOLSWORTHY

Infantry Soldier Various Units - Use of advanced infantry tactics and specialist weapons and equipment with stealth, surprise and the precise application of hard-hitting shock action in a range of operations. Deployments to Somalia, East Timor, Iraq, Afghanistan and the Solomon Islands.

Honors and Awards:

Military: Australian Defence Medal, Australian Active Service Medal, Somalia, East Timor, Iraq & Afganistan. UN Medal, IRAQ Campaign Medal, Afganistan Campaign Medal. and the ICB.

Below is the story of FitzGerald’s false claim of serving in Somalia taken from his Facebook page. The only alteration is to split it into paragraphs for ease of reading, no alterations have been made to this or any other documents regarding spelling or grammar mistakes. You will notice below his name he has put Chapter 1. Maybe he was planning on writing a book of his exploits.

Welcome to Somalia. ( Operation Solace) 1993

by Mark FitzGeraldon Saturday, 1 May 2010 at 13:50 ·

Chapter 1.

After more tan 20 hours on the plane, we finally started to descend and my anxiety began to rise. We came in low over the indian ocean, continuing to descend until it seemed we would land in the water. We crossed the coast, and the city of Mogadishu suddenly spread out on either side of the Qantas 747 seconds before the weels touched.

Crew requests to remain seated until coming to a complete stop were ignored as soldiers pressed their faces against the windows to see what would be our home for the next 19 weeks. As the aircraft taxied down the runway, we got our first glimpse of Mogadishu. The city sprawled around us and at first its white buildings looked relatively normal - an illusion that was to be short lived.

The devistated city formed a sinister background for the mass of military hardware lined up on the side of the airfield. Attack helicopters, armoured fighting vehicles and military aircraft of all descriptions sat in the morning heat. It seemed the whole world was here and ready to do business. It became obvious we had flown in to something really big and for a moment, I felt reassured - surely with all this hardware thye bad guys wouldn't mess with us. My relief was short lived as the plane taxied past four gutted Canadian armoured vehicles.

Welcome to Somalia. It was Monday the 18th January 1993, I was just 19 years old and I was part of the might 1 RAR Battalion Group - 1000 diggers sent to Somalia as Australia's contribution to Operation Restor Hope, a US - led missionn to secure the distribution of humanitarian aid. Altough our operation was called Operation Solace, My Unit B section was attached for the duration. We were all eager to get out there and get down to business, the waiting game had put us under considerable stress.

Now one thing I need to mention about Somalia is the smell, its horrible it smells like a wheely bin on a hot day the stench fills your nostrals and makes your stomach curn. Sargent Bobbin saw me and through me a cigarette, his words still ring in my ear - smoke it, it taste likes shit but at least its your shit not like the shit you got to breath here boy. I lit my first cigarette.

We stood on the tarmac and waited. All around us, Americans sped past us in trucks and Humvees, kicking up dust as we tried our best to look relaxed. As I surveyed the bustle of Mogadishu airport I threw up and got a mass of cheers from the lads. I wiped my mouth and I felt like I was in the opening scene of the movie Platoon, with the FNGs gawking into their new surrounds - at least no one was loading body bags . I wanted t go home.

The Qantus crew posed for a photo as forklifts unloaded our kit. Somewher on those pallets were our personal weapons and we were all keen to have a rifle ion our hands. The first aussies who had arrived two days earlier had been shot as they stood unarmed on the tarmac and we were keen not to be in a similar situation.

The crew quickly retreated inside the 747 turned it around and took off in less than one hour on the ground. As the first sounds of distant gunfire drifted in from somewhere in the city, I watched the plane head out over the ocean. There was one big happy pilot happy to have his big shinny plane out of harms way. We were eventually loaded on to trucks and moved to an admin area.

We were then explained our SOP's ( standard operating procedures) and ROE ( rules of engagement) basically it was explained we could only fire our weapons to protect our lives or the lives of the aid workers. We were told we could not fire at the malitia unless they attacked us - bsically stand around and watch like a spectator at a football match. After the briefing we sat in shabby American tents, and played the first of many countless games of cards, until at last our weapons finally arrived.

Our relief at being armed somewhat diminished as we waited another couple of hour for ammunition. There is something daunting about loading live rounds into a magazine in a real AO ( area of operations) The act itself becomes very familiar after the hours spent loading at basic training. I felt I had been doing it my whole life not just two years. You just load without thinking but on that day as i pushed the SS109 rounds int the Steyr magazine I wondered how long it would be before I had to decide whether or not to fire one of them at another human being.

Word went round that some of us were to go to the port and guard some of the carriers left by 1 Troop, who had already left for Baidoa. Nine of us piled into the back of a Rover and headed for the port and our first up close look at Mogadishu. As we drove through the gate guarded by anxious looking Pakistani soldiers, we went to action on our rifles for the first time and moved outside the wire into the twighlight zone.

We drove quickly through the back streets of the city. The devastation was overwhelming. Every building was damaged, riddled with holes caused by various calibre of ammunition. Burnt out cars and decaying bodies lined the streets. Then I became scared as we past a burnt out US Humvee and then another. I counted 6 destroyed armoured vehicles that sat where they had died as if to remind us the dangers of armoured warfare in a urban environment, a warning not lost on us infantry.

Mogadishu port was a busy place. Old shipping containers stacked 4 high surrounded the main area to keep the locals out, as massive military and civilian ships unloaded cargo. Lined up on the dock were masses of tan-coloured US Marine corps, tanks and artillery waiting to be loaded as streams of green coloured US Army equipment poured ashore.

The Marines were leaving as the Army was taking over, and the enormity of the US war machine was on display. Everywhere large American soldiers in tight taylored cams moved equipment and stores oblivious to the gawking aussies in their baggy AusCams. We found the remaining 1 Troop and HQ Vehicles parked in a quiet corner of the port and tried to make ourselves comfortable. We sat and watched as Somalie kids threw rocks and jeered at the soldiers working in the port.

As the sun began to set on our first day in Somalia we found a few Yanks who were keen to get their hands on some Aussie rations. We made outrages demand of one box of MRE'S ( meal ready eat) for one day Aussie ration pack, and to our suprise they accepted. With the exchange made we filled our faces with the sweet fatty Yank rations, glad to have something different to eat and feeling pretty smug. Little did we know, the supply of relatvely boring, but practicle Aussie ration pack would dry up in a fortnight and we would be stuck eating MRE's for the next 5 months.

Mogadishu at night was a scary pleace and even from the relative safety of the port. I could feel the nervous tension and menace in the city. I tried to sleep but was too full of nervous energy. I lay on top of my sleeping bag listening to gunshots and watching tracer fire arc over the city, wondering what the next 19 weeks had in store for us. After a fitful nigh at the port we returned to the main UN base and waited for the arrivel of HMAS Tobruk, which was carrying our M113 APCs and the rest of our personel.

Our eagerness to get the vehicles and move to our AO in Baidoa was compounded by poor discipline UN soldiers guarding the compound we were all getting toey. It was a hot afternoon and a group of United Arab Emirates vehicles lined up in front of our tent for a patrol. We watched in mild amusement as soldiers yelled orders at each other, before going back to our game of cards, which was promptly interrupted by a burst of .50 cal fire just outside.

Nervously we peered out to see a arab screaming abuse at a bashful looking soldier standing behind his smoking machine gun. The rounds had passed through the back of the truck in front without killing or hitting anyone and this seemed ok for the UAE soldiers who seemed to be laughing and jeering at the culprit. After a minute or two they mounted thier vehicles and proceeded toward the gate. The Arab with the itchy trigger finger shrugged and smiled as he drove past us. We pondered the odds of getting killed by friendly fire in Mogadishu. We needed no other incentive to get our vehicles and get on with it so we could all go home.

HMAS Tobruk arrived on 20 January and we set out to the port to unload the vehicles. We jumped in the back of a Rover and drove through the gate and back out on to the streets of Mogadishu. After around 10 or 15 minutes the Rover started to shake and the driver reported a flat tyre he turned down a small side street and pulled of the MSR. ( Main Supply Route) as he stopped and checked the map to check his bearings to ensure we didnt get lost , a small group of Somalie men stared at us from accross the street, one of whom pointed at me and lifted his shirt to reveal a semi automatic pistol.

My hear raced as Corporal barked an order to dismount and stand to. Two of the others were setting about getting the jack and spare ready. As I stood by the Rover I was shaking as I raised my rifle and placed the armed Somalie man in my sights The Somalies started yelling and walking towards us, some carried Machetes some carried small arms etc. I could not understand anything they were saying as they got closer I was ordered to fire if I felt threatend.

They kept coming and I heard the Corporal yell at them to stop but they ignored him. Probarbly high on the local narcotic Khat. The first one was only a few meteres away he raised his machete above his head and yelled his teacth were stained red from the Khat he had eaten his eyes hollow and stoned *I couldn't think as the order to fire was screamed at me by an anxious looking Corporal. I quickly droped to my knee and squeezed the trigger and fired a double tap ( 2 shots) the first round hit him in the shoulder and the second in the throat it blew his neck and face apart as he slumped to the ground a mere meter from me.

Just 19 years old and I had made my first kill the shock and disbelief barely had time to sink in when, the sound of machine gun fire echoed through the air. I heard the rounds whistle all around me , I watched in horror as the other somalie men seemed to dance as the bullets ripped through them like a knife through butter.

Fuck the flat was yelled and we quickly piled in to the back of the Rover and sped off leaving clouds of dust. By now a large mob was running towards the Rover and rounds were bouncing off the car as they opened fire apon us. I heard a woosh and saw a building explode as a child fired a poorly aimed RPG ( rocket propelled grenade) at us.

We picked up speed and headed back to the MSR. I was shaking as we drove down the road in complete silence everyone seemed numb in their own way nobody spoke for what seemed hours not seconds. Fuck that was something to write home about joked the Corporal as I burst in to tears. He put his arm around me and said you did good Fitzy you did real good I'm proud of you.

We drove I guess about one kilometre when we pulled over to change the tyre, the rim was hot and not a even a shred of rubber remained, I was just happy to help as it stopped me thinking about the carnage I had just left behind.

We arrived at the port and unloaded Tobruk through the rest of the day and half the night. The old transport ship sat dwarfed by the huge American craft nearby. As we watched the armoured vehicles being unloaded off rolled the 30 year old M113s by the back, an old Yank gunnery sargent walked over and with a rye grin, asked why we had bought our museum. Jibes aside I was happy to see one of our ancient vehicles here to protect us. It was 10 years older than me but the M113 was tough, reliable and surely better than any fucking thing they had.

The boys of the calvary had arrived and deep down we all felt a sense of security knowing that we would be travelling in 3 inches of steel surrounding us not just our AusCams. Although time would show that through the 19 weeks of operation Solace, I would only travel with the convoy that one time.

It was the end of another day, as I lay out my sleeping bag to retire for the night I just lay there in disbelief thinking of the events that had occured in the last 48 hours.

I barely slept that night, my mind was racing at a million miles an hour and it occured for me for the first time, I might not be going home that I might die in this hell hole of a place. I felt so numb like part of me was already dead. I pulled out my note book, it was light enough to see so I started to write a note for Mum in case I didn't make it home. I felt a sense of srength writing this note a sense of immortality as If I could speak from the grave. I finished writing tore out the page and placed it in my top left hand pocket and reassured myself Mum would never need read it. I slept soundly then to daybreak.

I awoke at 5.12am day three in Somalia. I pulled my canteen out and tipped some water in my cup, grabbed my shaving kit and lathered up my shaving brush, ( Fauldings shaving cream ) still love the stuff. I shaved quickly and had a quick wash, feeling refreshed I opened a rashon pack and sorted myself a brew.

Parade was at 5.30am it was more of a check kit parade than a drill, Sargent wnated to inspect our weapons and ammunition to make sure everything was how it should be, after a roll call we listened to todays briefing. Change of plan men said Sargent you wont be going to Baidoa today your off to provide protection to the Morris compound-

The Morris compound was the catering for the UN troops and workers oy was run by a kiwi called David Morris. It was also the home to CARE International an aid organization which was providing food and medical releif to the locals. Our job was simple keep the compound secure and patrol with CARE International to ensure the vehicles and supplies reachwd their destination. Little did we know that our mission would involve some of the most intense contacts Australian troops would face during the entire operation.

It was approx 1100 hours when we were given the order to roll out, I loaded myself and my kit into the back of the Rover, as we pulled out of the safety of the port and back out in to the streets of Mogadishu. I clicked my weapon over to action again and sat ther in silence with my eyes peeled to my surroundings, I could not understand why we were here, everywhere I looked I saw devastation, I cringed as I saw to dogs fighting over the remains of what was once a human being, I wanted to stop and shoot the dogs but we just rolled on by.

About 1km up the road the convoy stopped, fallen power lines were blocking the road , piles of burning rubish littered the streets, and thick smoke was bellowing from a pile of burning tyres - tyres were burnt to stop helicopters from being able to view the surounding area. My nostrils and throat were burning as the thick smoke swarmed around us my eyes were stinging as id I had sun block in them and I put my goggles on hoping to see again.

We were ordered to dismount and stand to. I got out and laid on the ground it was hard and dusty and hurt my hips, as I lay there in the rubish and filth I surveyed the area, so far so good I thought until we were divided into 5 patrols of around 8 men and sent to secure the area. I ran down a side street and crouched behind the remains of an old car. Its burnt out shell made it impossible to determine the make or model, I stopped and waited while the other men in my section caught up, I felt very alone at this time , we were spread out I guess about 10 meters apart but it seemed much furthur. I signalled the all clear to the guy behind me , henervously acknowledged and turned to signal the next guy in the line till the message of all clear had reached the Corporal.

A reply was then signaled back up the line to me advising me to stay there while the others checked the surrounding buildings. I crouched down low as I could making myself almost invisible to anyone approaching from up the street. I turned my head and watched as one by one my mates entered the building behind me. Fuck I was all alone now and I felt a wave of teror rush through my body, I realised how hot it was for the first time that day, my mouth felt dry and my throat was closed I couldn't breath. I looked around and tried to say some comforting words to myself. I reached into my webbing and pulled my water bottle free I gulped a few mouthfulls and it hurt to swallow.

I ws scared really scared my eyes stung from the sweat that ran down my brow it was hard to put the lid on the water bottle as my hands were shaking. I couldnt help but think of the story I had heard the day before about how the militia had found a US Marine as he guarded the entrance to a building and how they had mutilated his body taking his head and leaving the rest to remind the Yanks they meant business. I was alone and the fear turned to anger I could hear my heart thumping in my head fuck them I kept saying over and over again. I was not going without a fight.

I heard my name and realised the guys were back on the street, I noticed the corporal tap on top of his head the signal to come here and I legged it back down the street. I ran back and crouched down beside the Corporal. He said yopu right Fitz you look fuckin pissed of man. I looked him right in the eye and saidf you fucking cunt you left me all on my own I'm only 20 and you left me alone. He didn't say anything to me just reached out grabbed my arm and nodded.

Within a few minutes US Army black hawkes came in overhead the thumping sound of their rotar blades echoed in my ears. The awesome sight of the big bird in the sky with the arsenal of the mighty US Army was a sight to behold, I watched as they circled above us like vultures circling their prey. Surley they won't hang around now I thought to myself only to be disappointed seconds later to hear they had spotted a large mob heading in our direction.

Now the whole problem with the conflict in Somalia is that the Choppers and us are not allowed to fire unless we were fired at, which means that by the time some shit stats it can be to late to use aerial support as we were often to close. If the black hawkes had been allowed to take out this mob then that would have been that, but as usual they just sat and hovered above us waiting for the shit to hit the fan.

We were then advised by radio that charges had been set to clear the road and that detonation was in 30 seconds. I counted the seconds on my watch hoping we would be on our way before the militia reached us. The explosion was suprisingly quiet not the boom I expected, within second the road was clear and we were ordered back to the Rovers. As we moved off I saw the first of the Militia in the distance but they were well out of harms way and I breathed a sigh of releif but I kept my rifle pointed in their direction and my finger at the ready beside the trigger. We drove for what seemed like hours through the streets of Mogadishu I surveyed the buildings for any sign of life, but it appeared we were the only ones around. Everywhere I looked I saw crumbling buildings riddled with s,all arms and mortar fire this once beautiful city lay in ruin, rubish littered the streets in massive quantities it looked like someone had dumped a tip in the suburbs, I lit a cigarette to try and disguise the taste of filth, it wasn't much better.

We arrived at the UN compound to cheers from the aid workers and locals who had been employed as drivers and store workers. They rushed towards us with trays of fruit, juice and cold beers. It was overwhelming I had never experienced something like this before it was like we had just won the rugby grand final and returned with the trophy. I was smiling for the first time since we arrived in Somalia I felt I had achieved something good, the smiles on these people touched my heart and made me feel prouder than ever before. I knew I was fighting for them and promised myself not to let them down. We lined up for roll call and after which we were given a few hours off and some well earned R & R. Sargent showed us to our quarters and I surveyed where I would be sleepng not to bad I thought we even had ceiling fans.

The compound itself was quite large a 10 metre high barbed wire fence surrounded the perimeter and thousands of sandbags had been stacked side by side to form a wall inside the fence, large amounts of scafolding had been used to build observation towers and large petol generators with lights similar to roadwork lights were placed around the complex. The builing itself was made up of one large warehouse with maybe 30 or so large trucks, a smaller builing used for cooking and about 70 large shipping containers full of food and supplies.

The building we had for our home was about 25 meters long it reminded me as the old portable classroom we had when I was in primary school. It had a small air conditioner at each end and three ceiling fans as well. I reakon we had the best accomodation in the whole country. a 34 cm TV and a VCR quickly was turned on and magically a porno flick appeared and was playing much to the delight of some of the boys. The megaphones were playing music some just sat around playing cards others were kicking a ball around. Now it really did look like a scene from a movie. END of Chapter !.

Another false document he created was a reference of his service in East Timor allegedly written by a Warrant Officer whose name we have blanked out as we are not sure if there is such a person.




Date: Sat, 3 Dec 2011 22:28:06 +1000
Subject: Reference - Testimonial for Mark Fitzgerald
From: xxxxxxxxx@gmail.com
To: markfitzgerald1973@hotmail.com


To Whom it may concern,

Mark Fitzgerald first became known to me in August 1992 when he was assigned to the 1st Battalion of the Royal Australian Regiment. He was a keen and eager young soldier, popular and humorous. I found PTE Fitzgerald to be a natural leader, a quick learner and a dedicated soldier. As time progressed PTE Fitzgerald was posted with myself to Somalia on Operation Solace UNITAF .

Australia deployed a battalion plus supporting elements, including a squadron of armoured personnel carriers, HQ staff, engineers, communications and electronic warfare specialists, administrative elements and HMAS Tobruk. The RAAF was also used to move the Australian forces to and from the area of operations, and conducted regular resupply missions from Australia . The battalion group operated the 17,000 square kilometre Baidoa Humanitarian Relief Sector in south-western Somalia.

During this deployment I personally came under live fire with PTE Fitzgerald in one of the most intense fire fights in my military career. To say he coped well on that day would be an understatement as a young lad with little experience I could not have asked for more. Instead I found myself watching a professional soldier who carried out his duties without hesitation.
To say the least he was more competent than some of the more experienced soldiers.

After the operation in Somalia I lost touch with PTE Fitzgerald as I was moved to the 3 rd Battalion, however I met him again as Corporal Fitzgerald late 1997 when I was assigned to 4 RAR Commando. Corporal Fitzgerald was also assigned to 4 RAR Commando although never completed Commando Selection. CPL Fitzgerald role was to provide a supporting role and play enemy for the aspiring new special forces unit and quite humorously held his own on many occasions.

In 2001 when the need for special forces to be deployed in East Timor UNTAET CPL Fitzgerald was invited to attend with Bravo company on deployment and accepted.
During the operation in East Timor I did not see much of Corporal Fitzgerald although the feedback was positive from many a Commando. The most common remark was you sure he ain't one of us. To the diggers in 12 platoon they would swear on their life that he was.

To sum CPL ( Mark) Fitzgerald up. He was a dedicated soldier one who always worked well in a team, Special forces are notoriously arrogant and Mark broke down the barriers there and was accepted as one of their own that's what makes him so memorable. I would recommend Mark for any Security company looking for a dedicated hardworking individual who can relate with all members of the military and is able to think on his feet.

WO xxxxxxxx (pk) –Retired




We did make contact with FitzGerald via email on several occasions as you can see below and at first he denied that the photo was of him and the false service record was not his. He did advise us that he only served two years with the Army Reserves.   

After a number of emails he was advised that he would be appearing on our website.

On 12/03/2013, at 3:07 PM, xxxxxxxxx wrote:


OK, thanks for that, we have quite a few names to go through. By the way for future reference, what is your military background.



On 15/03/2013, at 10:49 AM, xxxxxx xxxxxxx> wrote:

Dear Mark FitzGerald

Can you please verify that the person in the photograph is yourself and that the Defence Documents relate to your service.




From: Mark Fitzgerald <markfitzgerald1973@hotmail.com>
Date: 16 March 2013 04:46
Subject: Re: Employment.
To: xxxxxxx

Hi xxxxx,

2 years Army Reserve limited I know but have completed plenty of civilian courses.




From: Mark Fitzgerald <>
Date: 16 March 2013 13:52
Subject: Re: Employment.
To: xxxxxxxxxx

Hi xxxxxxx

The person below is not me and this is not my service record.



On 17/03/2013, at 2:01 AM, xxxxxxx xxxxxxwrote:


You have been positively identified as the person in more than one photograph wearing three medals and the Infantry Combat Badge.

Can you please advise if this information is not correct. Should you choose to not respond we will continue to investigate without the benefit of your input.


Xxxxx xxxxx

ANZMI Investigator


Date: Sun, 17 Mar 2013 20:52:26 +1000
Subject: Re:  Fwd: Employment.



Your actions leave us no choice other than to detail your behaviour on our web site. http://www.anzmi.net/cases.html



From: Mark FitzGerald <markfitzgerald1973@hotmail.com>
Date: 18 March 2013 03:58
Subject: RE:  Fwd: Employment.

I understand this however I am in a hostile country and placing my photo before I am able to safely leave may put my life at risk. Even though I work in a admin role as they may decide to do something to me such as say I was kidnapped etc. I am required to work out my contract which ends September 1st or give at least 90 days notice. Also it is I am sure likely that I will be assulted while in Australia. Could you please advise what detaikls are placed on the site I would assume that privacy issues are still to be protected as Identity theft could occur.




Mark FitzGerald you are one of the new era wannabes, violating the integrity of the Veteran Community, you have:

1.      Worn medals you are not entitled to wear.

2.      Created false documents for the purpose of gaining a benefit from a prospective employer.

3.      Created a document to falsely portray yourself as a Royal Australian Infantry Corps, qualified Rifleman.

4.      Falsely claimed deployment to Somalia where you have written a childish and fictitious account of your “experience”, which included the killing of a Somali person.

5.      Falsely claimed to have served in Afghanistan and other hostile regions for the purpose of appearing to be a battle experienced Infantry soldier.

Your real military service, where you did not even complete basic recruit training and then served two years in the Army Reserve is nothing like your false military service. You have stolen the honour of those who have done the hard yards and you will be forever condemned by genuine Veterans wherever you may travel.

This is published in the public interest, particularly that of the Vietnam Veteran Community. All information presented here is fact and the truth. Reports from private citizens are supported by statements of fact and statutory declarations.

Surname: Flaherty
Christian Names: Anthony John (Tony)
Country: Australia
State or Province: SA
City or Town: Two Wells
Service #: 44074
Service: Army
Branch: Catering Corps
Commencement of service: Claims 1963
Completion of service: Unknown
Case Notes:



See Below:


Flaherty Update March 2018.

In regards to the matter of Anthony (Tony) Flaherty, the following article appeared in The Australian Newspaper on the 13 February, 2018.


An interesting comment in this article is from Flaherty’s former “C” Company Commander, Major David Rankine MC, who clearly states what Flaherty’s duties were, and what they were not.

In this article, Flaherty is quoted as claiming “damages of $250.000 from Michael von Berg because he says that Mr von Berg reported him to the Australia and New Zealand Military Imposter Group”.

Mr Michael von Berg MC OAM is the Chairman and National President of the Royal Australian Regiment Association.

ANZMI can categorically state that Mr Michael von Berg MC OAM, did not report Anthony Flaherty to ANZMI.   The reports were received from a number of disappointed people, who know Flaherty very well, and who viewed Flaherty’s curriculum vitae (cv) for his application for nomination to the South Australia RSL State Branch executive, and saw the inconsistencies and falsehoods that it contained.

A further update will be provided in the future as these matters progress.  

In the mean time, Flaherty remains as an Executive Member of the South Australia State RS&L Board.


Original Entry

 Anthony John (Tony) Flaherty, was born on the 5 May, 1944 at Renmark in South Australia. He is the current Mayor of the District Council of Mallala, South Australia, having been elected to this position in early 2016.

He resides in Two Wells, a small town, 40 kilometres north of Adelaide. He is the President of the Two Wells Returned and Services League (RSL) Sub Branch. He was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia in 2005. He is also the Mallala Citizen of the year 2016.

Flaherty is a glory hunter and a valour thief, who has for at least 46 years, been relating to others, outrageous lies to convince them that he is a Vietnam War Hero.



As a result of these preposterous lies, he was voted in as Mayor of that District in 2008 and again in 2016.

He is now seeking high office within the RSL South Australia State Branch as a State Board Member. He is asking for support from South Australian State RSL executives and members to vote for him at their next upcoming State Board election.

Tony Flaherty is a long time fraud.

Included on his personal resume for election to that office, he has claimed, inter alia, the following -;


Military Service.

• Regular Army 13 years.
• Army Reserve 10 years.
• Active Service Malaya 1967 – 1969. 8 RAR.
• Vietnam 1969 -1970. Served with 8 RAR in Long Hai Mountains. Operation Hammersley, Platoon Commander role, 8 Platoon, C Company, liaison appointment US Forces at Long Dien.

Tony Flaherty enlisted in the Australian Regular Army about 1963. Following Recruit Training he was selected for Australian Army Catering Corps duty as a Cook. He progressed through the Catering Corps ranks and was promoted to the rank of Sergeant.

He claims Active Service in 8 RAR (8 Battalion Royal Australian Regiment) Malaya from 1967 – 1969. At this time, he was a member of the Australian Army Catering Corps and not an Infantry Battalion. He was never a member of the 8 Battalion RAR in Malaya. That statement is a lie.

Australian Active Service for Malaya concluded on the 30 September, 1967 and not 1969. Therefore, he did not have active service in Malaya. That statement is also a lie.

In any case, 8 RAR arrived in Malaya in October, 1967. If he was attached to 8 RAR at the time, it was as a Cook in the Catering Corps.

Flaherty was subsequently posted to the then Republic of South Vietnam on the 19 November, 1969. He completed his tour and returned to Australia on the 5 November, 1970.


The above document is a copy of the Vietnam Nominal Roll entry for Anthony John Flaherty.

Flaherty was posted to Vietnam as a Sergeant, with the duties of a Cook, Australian Army Catering Corps. He was attached to 8 RAR during his time there. He was never a member of 8 RAR., or any other Infantry Battalion on this posting, or any other posting during his entire Army service.

He falsely claims that he served with 8 RAR in the Long Hai Mountains on Operation Hammersly in Vietnam as a Platoon Commander. Another lie.

In early 1970 8 RAR took part in Operation Hammersley, a reconnaissance operation in the Long Hải area. This operation began on 10 February and on 18 February it captured a large bunker complex after the Vietnamese Communist defenders withdrew following air raids. The operation continued until 9 March, with the battalion carrying out patrols and conducting ambushes in order to engage Communist troops. These operations were successful, and 8 RAR was awarded the South Vietnamese Government's Meritorious Unit Commendation, including Cross of Gallantry with Palm Unit Citation for its role in the operation.[1]





In the above photograph Flaherty can be seen wearing the South Vietnam Government's Cross of Gallantry, with Palm Unit Citation ribbon decoration. (Right side of coat lapel) He is also wearing the Australian Infantry Combat Badge above his medals.

With regard to Operation Hammersley, members of 8 Battalion RAR used hard (field) rations from tins and packets during this operation.

There was no requirement for an Executive Chef or Maitre D where these men were fighting. They were engaged in heavy contact with the enemy in the Long Hai Mountains.

Alas, our highly trained fighting machine Tony Flaherty was not with them on this occasion, and certainly not leading any Platoons of hardened Infantrymen, as he claims.

As indicated, Flaherty also wears the Australian Infantry Combat Badge (ICB) with his medals in addition to the South Vietnamese Governments Meritorious Unit Commendation mentioned above -;

The Infantry Combat Badge (ICB) is awarded to serving members of the Australian Army for service as an Infantryman in warlike operations.

The ICB was first established in July 1970 for recognition of infantry service in battle or on operations, following the decision of the Military Board in January 1970. The role of the infantry is to seek out and close with the enemy, to kill or capture him, to seize and to hold ground, to repel attack, by night and day, regardless of season, weather or terrain. The purpose of the ICB is to recognize this unique role and the particular training, skills and hardships attendant upon service as an infantryman. In exceptional circumstances, the ICB may be awarded to members of other corps, where they have qualified for it as infantrymen.[1

Specific eligibility

Any member of the Australian Army who:[1]
• was on continuous full-time service as an infantryman at the time of deployment;
• has given satisfactory service as an infantryman;
• has served either a continuous or an aggregate of 90 days satisfactory service on warlike operations for a single deployment or operation; and
• has not been previously issued the ICB.
Under exceptional circumstances, the Approval Authority may approve the issue of the ICB to members on exchange/attachment duties for service with allied units who meet the criteria, and/or to members who would have met the criteria had they not been killed, wounded, disabled or evacuated.[1]

Flaherty does not meet any of the above criteria.

Since Flaherty posted his resume for the RSL State Board election up on the internet, there has been a furious reaction by former senior Commissioned Officers and Non Commissioned Officers, who were attached to 8 RAR at the time of the Battalion’s deployment to Vietnam, and who were directly involved in Operation Hammersley.

We have been forwarded copies of Statements from very concerned former senior members of the Battalion, who state the following, inter alia -;

1. (excerpts Witness 1) Sgt Flaherty was a Sgt Cook and a good one. However,. He was jealous of his peer group wishing to acquire the stature and involvement of an infantry soldier and not as a cook. Though he desired and made no secret about it, Sgt Flaherty never commanded a unit or su¬b unit of C Coy in Vietnam. If he is doing this then it is purely his desires and imagination and it is not true.

2. (excerpts Witness 2) This bloke has been making claims that he ‘commanded’ platoons of C Coy 8RAR for many years. He has even some how wangled, I believe, to get himself issued the ICB despite being posted to 8 RAR, as xxxxx has advised, as a cook. Regarding his claim to have commanded 8 Pl on Op Hammersley, pages 52 and 53 of The Grey Eight in Vietnam, 8 RAR’s unit history, clearly show Lt Chris Sinclair leading men of 8 Platoon as xxxxx has quite rightly stated.

3. (excerpts Witness 3) I have read Tony Flaherty’s claim that he was a Platoon Commander of 8 Pl on Operation Hamersley and find it totally offensive to all who served in that platoon. My memory of these events are clear and I recall that 8 Platoon consisted of Chris Sinclair as Platoon Commander, xxxxxxxx as Platoon Sergeant with Chad Sherrin, ‘Opie’ O’Brien and xxxxxxx as Section Commanders.

4. (excerpts Witness 4)) I served for 30 years in the Infantry Corps and served on active service with C Company 8 RAR as a section commander with 9 Platoon C Company for the entire tour in 1969-¬70. I am concerned of the continuing statements that Ex Sgt Tony Flaherty of the Royal Australian Army Catering Corps (RAACC)is making regarding his war service record, he has made these statements for many years and has been the cause of many discussions amongst the C Company veterans. My memory is clear that Sgt Tony Flaherty was the C Company Sgt Cook and definitely did not serve in any capacity, command or other with 8 Platoon OR ANY OTHER PLATOON at any stage of the tour. The only time that I saw Sgt Flaherty on Operation Hammersley in February 1970 was to visit the 9 Platoon ambush position on the morning of 16th February with the CHQ group after a large action that resulted in a large number of enemy killed. Sgt Flaherty arrived and spent the majority of the short time that the CHQ was there taking MANY photos of the dead enemy until he was advised to stop. I am aware that Sgt Flaherty did accompany some TAOR patrols from the main base at Nui Dat when the company was on operations as part of Rear Details.

Witness 4 states that, “I am aware Sgt Flaherty did accompany some TAOR (Tactical Area of Responsibility) patrols from the main base at Nui Dat when the Company was on operations as part of rear details”

At most, even if Flaherty did accompany some perimeter patrols around the base, he was certainly not on full time duty as an Infantryman at the time of his deployment, and did not serve a continuous or aggregate of 90 days on deployment or operation. (as an Infantryman) He has no entitlement to wear the ICB whatsoever.

These infrequent functions were commonly known as “swannies” in Vietnam. Accompanying trained Infantrymen to patrol a perimeter"outside the wire" as a “rear detail” on a few “swannies” does not justify his wearing of an ICB.

Another witness has provided documentary evidence that at his acceptance speech for the 2016 Mallala Citizen of the Year award, Flaherty informed the gathering, how “he was on Patrol in Vietnam in command of his 8 Battalion RAR Platoon, when it came under heavy enemy fire, and that he had to personally call in artillery support to save the day”. Another lie.

Flaherty was also called to account regarding his false claims, by a former 8 RAR member, who had been seriously wounded in combat in Vietnam. He is still suffering the effects of his injuries.

In this regard, we have another signed statement -;

(Excerpts Witness 5.) “You will note in all cases the individuals making these statements in regards to Flaherty’s claims in two cases highly decorated for gallantry, and in all cases went on and enjoyed commissioned rank. It would be very foolish of the RSL to ignore these statements after complaints had been made by xxxxxxxxxx and a seriously wounded member of that platoon. More so that Flaherty through a Director of the RSL called the wounded soldier a liar. The battle scars carried by this soldier is a bit more factual than the fantasies and stolen valor of ex Sgt Flaherty. Reports indicate that Flaherty has been living this lie for some 46 years and it must be stopped. Stolen valor and false claims of this kind are an insult to those that have done the hard yards, lost close friends, been wounded and in some cases decorated for their actions and this individual is not fit to walk in their shadow let along (sic) be appointed a director of the RSL”.

Well said!

Flaherty claims on his resume a “Liaison appointment to US Forces at Long Dien”. This is just another outright lie. Can you possibly imagine an Australian Army Cook with the rank of Sergeant being appointed to liaise with United States Army Forces personnel at Long Dien. Maybe he was swapping recipes with our American allies and advising them how to cook up some bangers and mash with damper. Glory be!!!

It is beyond belief that this imposter can steal the valour of so many honourable Australian Infantry soldiers for so long. And not just those still living.

He is an absolute disgrace and should be booted out of the South Australia RSL completely, let alone being appointed to the State Board of the S.A. State RSL Branch, where he would create further disgrace to that organisation, if elected.

He should resign from his Mallalla Mayoral duties immediately, and hand back his 2016 Citizen of the Year award. The Mallala Council and community should notify the office of the Governor General, Canberra, to take action in regards to the Order of Australia award he was presented.

Flaherty needs to publically apologise to all 8 Battalion RAR personnel, particularly the former wounded soldier he offended, all Vietnam Veterans in general, the constituents who voted him in as Mayor, all the members of the Two Wells RSL Sub Branch, and the RSL South Australia State Branch.

He should just then resign all positions he holds. He has no credibility.

In fairness to Flaherty, we sent him three emails, to offer him an opportunity to provide evidence of his claims, or explain his version of the allegations made against him.

We have received no reply.

We continue to expose executive office holders of RSL Sub Branch positions in Australia as being frauds. RSL New South Wales under the new leadership of State President Rod White and CEO Glenn Kolomeitz are trying to do something about it.

Lets hope they get some support.

We look forward to completing an update of this valour thief and imposter in the near future.



Since our original exposure of long time military fraud Anthony Flaherty, of Two Wells, South Australia, there have been a number of developments, that ANZMI readers need to be made aware of.

ANZMI stand by all the factual evidence that we published in June, 2016, in regards to Flaherty’s false claims of military service as an 8 Battalion RAR (Royal Australian Regiment) - (Infantry) Platoon Commander, C Company 8 Platoon, - Operation Hammersley, Long Hai Mountains, South Vietnam, 1969 – 1970.. Also that he falsely claimed "active service 8 RAR in Malaya, 1967 - 1969".

Flaherty now claims publicly in televised and written media, that he has been vindicated by the National body of the Returned and Services League (R&SL) of all false claims of South Vietnam Infantry military service, made against him by former Commissioned and Non Commissioned Officers of 8 Battalion RAR.

This claim of vindication is also false, and it is a continuation of preposterous lies that he has stated about his service, to convince himself and everyone else that he is some sort of Infantry Platoon Commanding war hero.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

In September and October, 2016, as a result of numerous signed statutory declarations received from former 8 Battalion RAR members, refuting Flaherty’s claims, the South Australian State Branch of the R&SL, (RS&L.SA), conducted a Tribunal hearing into the matters.

The Tribunal concluded that Flaherty had indeed misrepresented his South Vietnam military service as a Platoon Commander, 8 Battalion RAR. at Operation Hammersley. It also determined that his claim of active service in Malaya 1967 - 1969 - 8 RAR. was also false.

He was then stood down from his position as a S.A. State RSL Board member for the remainder of his current term. This was a position he had recently been appointed to in 2016. Surprisingly, although his credibility and integrity was seriously tarnished, Tribunal determinations allowed Flaherty to remain as the President of the Two Wells R&SL Sub Branch.

Flaherty then appealed this decision to the National body of the R&SL.

On the 3 March, 2017, a reference to this matter appeared on the Adelaide Channel 9 News. The misleading report declared that Flaherty “was this week vindicated” as far as his claims were concerned. Also in the segment, there was an apology extended to Flaherty by the National RSL CEO Ms.Georgie Macris, on behalf of the Acting National President Robert Dick.

Flaherty then seized the moment and gave the Reporter Ben Avery an emotive response about how “he was never going to wear his medals again”, but was happy now that he had been vindicated.

The facts of these events however, are far removed from what the Television Reporter put to air with Flaherty’s interview. Flaherty’s claims have again stirred the emotions of all the former 8 Battalion Infantry soldiers, who have provided sworn statutory declarations, stating that Flaherty’s claims of serving as an 8 Battalion RAR, Platoon Commander in South Vietnam are lies.

On investigation of the Channel 9 television news report, it is quite apparent that it had been edited to favour Flaherty. The report was incorrect and misleading.

It was ascertained that the National RSL CEO Ms. Georgie Macris, did not apologise for the action taken against Flaherty. Ms Macris apologised for the length of time and delay that it has taken to resolve the matter.

The National RSL has actually referred the matter back to S.A State Branch for a “fresh” Tribunal Hearing . At the time of writing, there is no result at hand.

As stated, Flaherty distorted the facts to publicly claim that he has been cleared of any impropriety.


Tony cleared of allegations
• Featured
March 8, 2017

Flaherty5 2017 04 02

TWO Wells Returned Services League (RSL) branch members have continued to throw their support behind their president, and Adelaide Plains Mayor, Tony Flaherty, after he was last week vindicated of false allegations made against him.

Mr Flaherty was cleared of allegations, made by the Royal Australian Regiment Association in July, which argued he had falsely claimed to have acted as a Platoon Commander during the Vietnam War, despite being sent to serve as a cook.

The allegations, and subsequent investigation by the RSL state board, saw Mr Flaherty dismissed from his board position, by a state tribunal, despite him presenting evidence to support his case.

Mr Flaherty then fronted a National RSL tribunal to appeal the decision, with its findings being made public last week.

In a statement aired on Friday night’s Nine News bulletin, the National RSL stated that “central to the complaints against Mr Flaherty…is wrong, ill-informed… there was no effective attempt at mediation (and) it might be argued that Tony was subject of a sustained campaign”.

Speaking during the same bulletin, Mr Flaherty – who did not return The Bunyip’s calls for comment – said his reputation had been tarnished as a result of the allegations and the state tribunal’s decision.

“I think the thing that got me was the way people turned on me,” Mr Flaherty told Nine News.

“I was never going to wear my medals again.”

Two Wells RSL secretary and long-time friend John Allen said the home branch has offered nothing but support to Mr Flaherty.
“We support our president 110 per cent, we believe exactly what he has said is right and all we can do is stand by him and support him,” he said.

National RSL chief executive Georgie Macris publicly apologised to Mr Flaherty, on behalf of both branches, during the Nine News report.

“I would like to apologise on behalf of the national president of the RSL, Robert Dick, and state president Tim Hanna to Mr Flaherty,” she said.

It is understood Mr Flaherty’s lawyers are currently preparing a defamation lawsuit against the RSL

As stated in our original exposure, we have six statutory declarations from former senior experienced members of 8 RAR. We recently received an additional statutory declaration which conclusively proves that at no time whilst Flaherty was in the Republic of South Vietnam, did he ever serve as an Infantry Platoon Commander. In particular , 8 RAR or on Operation Hamersley. He was a Cook, and by all accounts, a very good Cook

The following article appeared in the InDaily Adelaide Independent Newspaper. The comments also regarding Flaherty’s allegations being recently overturned by a National Tribunal are incorrect.

InDaily has been told it is a constitutional requirement that the board has at least two more elected board members than appointed ones.
Darwin branch president Don Milford is an ex officio board member while Tony Flaherty is on self-imposed absence while he considers suing the RSL over accusations he fabricated his service record –allegations that were recently overturned by a national tribunal.

Flaherty was not on a "self-imposed absence", he was stood down for the remainder of his elected term by the S.A RS&L Board.

In response to this misleading article, the below mentioned email was sent to the Editor of the “InDaily Newspaper” by a former highly experienced 8 Battalion RAR member.

Dear Editor,

I do not believe your story contained within the above link, is accurate. Inter alia, it is stated that"Tony Flaherty is on self-imposed absence while he considers suing the RSL over accusations he fabricated his service record - allegations that were recently overturned by a national tribunal."

Have you read the findings of the "national Tribunal"? If not, how can you claim that the fabricated allegations "were recently overturned by a national tribunal"? My advice is that the National Office of the RSL has not yet considered Tony Flaherty's appeal to them for his removal from the SA State RSL Board as a result of their belief that Tony had, in fact, fabricated his service record. I believe the National RSL Office has apologised to Tony only for their delay in considering his appeal! I served with Tony in Vietnam and hitherto regard him as a friend. Tony was a Sergeant cook in Charlie Company, Eight Battalion The Royal Australian Regiment (8RAR) and I was a (deleted), later to become a (deleted) in 8 Platoon Charlie Company of 8RAR. One of Tony's claims is that he was the Platoon Commander of 8 Platoon, 8RAR in Vietnam. HE WAS NOT!

Tony's fabricated service record with Charlie Company, particularly his fabricated service record with 8 Platoon, has been refuted with Statutory Declarations by the Charlie Company Commander in Vietnam, the 8 Platoon Commander in Vietnam, two 8 Platoon Sergeants in Vietnam, at least one Section Commander of 8 Platoon in Vietnam. A very forceful on undeniable source of the truth about Tony's service record with Charlie Company 8RAR in Vietnam. Unfortunately for Tony, the truth does not align with Tony's fabricated service record. Every single surviving 8 Platoon soldier who served in Vietnam and who has been recently contacted about Tony's claims, has refuted Tony's claims and have become very disturbed and annoyed at Tony's claims.

I would sincerely ask you to respond to this email and if you feel so disposed, you can publish this email.
Signed. (deleted.)

In conclusion, the weak decision by the R&SL South Australia State Branch Tribunal to just remove Flaherty from their State Branch Board for the remainder of his elected term, but allow him to continue within the R&SL organisation as a President of the Two Wells Sub Branch is a sad indictment on how poorly that State Branch is currently administered.

In a previous ANZMI exposure of another South Australian self confessed military fraud, Gerald Francis Harrison OAM, of Adelaide, a Mr. Bill Denny OAM, then high ranking SA RSL Board member, and former Lieutenant Colonel in the Australian Army, defended the outrageous lies of Harrison, who had claimed to be a member of 3 Battalion RAR at the battle of Maryang San, Korea in October, 1951.

See here Harrison

Denny, defending Harrison’s lies, stated to the InDaily South Australian Newspaper that -;“ANZMI are “scumbags” who hide behind anonymity and destroy peoples careers.”

Denny is oblivious to the fact that military imposters in our community gain undeserved recognition, cash and other benefits by living their lies for years, and convincing gullible people like Denny, that they are a person of honesty and integrity.

The S.A. RSL Management Board is now in complete disarray, with major financial problems and infighting. The CEO has resigned, as have a number of Committee members, including Denny, who resigned in November, 2016.

The Flaherty matter needs to be resolved expeditiously. If the SA RSL hierarchy allow imposters like Flaherty to continue unpunished, it will degrade the organisation considerably. They need moral conviction, courage and leadership.

We have on good advice that there will also be dozens of genuine Royal Australian Regiment Association members, who are former Vietnam Infantry soldiers, resigning and walking away from the South Australian R&SL forever, if Flaherty is permitted to continue his charade without retribution.

Who can blame them.

ANZMI and the RS&L South Australia are in possession of 7 sworn statutory declarations from former 8 RAR members proving that Flaherty is a liar and that his claims are fabricated. All this evidence must be weighed against Flaherty's extraordinary claims.

Flaherty cannot produce one witness to corroborate his version of events, OR, contradict the seven statutory declarations made by senior 8 RAR members, who genuinely fought on the battlefield.

In March, 2017, a questionnaire was sent to dozens of former 8 RAR Infantry personnel by senior members of the Battalion, regarding Flaherty's ridiculous claims. This was as a result of Flaherty's threats of legal action against members, disputing his lies of being an 8 RAR Platoon Commander, Operation Hammersley.

It was forwarded to us by a very concerned former member who received this questionnaire, and detests wannabees as much as we do.

See below.


To all my Fellow Charlie Company Mates who I served with in Vietnam,
Due to the very widespread media coverage of claims made by Tony Flaherty, who was our Charlie Company Sgt cook in Vietnam, I have been asked to communicate with you, as a member of Charlie Company 8RAR, to seek your help in trying to clarify what actually evolved as best you can remember from your "first hand" knowledge (not hearsay) in answer to the following several questions:-

1. Do you recall, from your own knowledge, if Tony Flaherty was put in charge of any unit or sub-unit, other than Catering Corps/Mess Duties? YES NO (circle one)

2. If YES to question 1, what unit, sub-unit, section or platoon was Tony Flaherty in command of?..............................................................................................

3. If you have answered YES to question 1, what was the period of time that Tony Flaherty was in command of that unit, sub-unit, section or platoon? ........./....../.........

4. What Section and Platoon where you in, in Vietnam? ...................Sec .................Pl

5. What was your period of service in that Section or Platoon? ...../......../......... to ....../........../...........

6. If you were in more than one Section or Platoon during your time in Vietnam, please indicate the period served in each Section and/or Platoon.

..........Sec ...........Pl ......./....../.......to ......./...../....... ........Sec ........Pl ......./....../.......to ...../......./......

To date, 30 replies have been received from a cross representation of former Platoon and Company members of 8 RAR. In particular former Platoon Commanders and Section Leaders.

Not one has confirmed or supported Flaherty's claims. Two responses agreed that Flaherty was a member of a couple of rear detail Tactical Area of Responsibility (TAOR) patrols, when the Battalion was absent from base on operational duties engaged with the enemy. This was normal procedure when the Battalion was assigned to engage the enemy elsewhere, and logistics personnel were utilised to conduct TAOR security patrols around the base.

Flaherty had no contact with the enemy whatsoever. Any claim that he did is false. Any claim that he was a 8 RAR Platoon Commander on these TAOR Patrols is a lie.

Seven former 8 RAR senior personnel have signed sworn Statutory Declarations detailing Flaherty's lies. Thirty other former 8 RAR personnel have now also completed a questionnaire rejecting his lies.

If Flaherty is telling the truth, then seven senior credible former Infantry soldiers have knowingly sworn false statutory declarations, punishable by law !

You be the judge !!

The time for any attempted mediation is over. You do not mediate with imposters.

Like most imposters who appear on this site, Flaherty has threatened to sue ANZMI and everybody who has disputed his false claims.

We here at ANZMI say go right ahead. We are confident that we can produce another 100 statutory declarations proving Flaherty is an imposter and liar of the highest order.

When the S.A RSL State Branch show some backbone and determines an appropriate outcome in this matter, we will look forward to publishing the results in our next update.


Surname: Fleming
Christian Names: David John
Country: Australia
State or Province: Unknown
City or Town: Unknown
Service: Army
Branch: Armoured
Case Notes:

David John Fleming

Fleming is an open and shut case of flagrant exaggeration.  Fleming served as a National Serviceman in the Australian Army from January 1969 to August 1971, then again from April 1980 until June 1985.  During his National Service commitment he served in South Vietnam with the Royal Australian Armoured Corp [RAAC] but only for a period of less than three months, before being medically evacuated back to Australia for a non battle casualty injury or illness.



Notice in the photograph that he is wearing eight medals. Fleming is a wannabe because he is only entitled to wear four medals. In addition Fleming has claimed on an application to join an Ex Service Organisation (ESO), that he had also been awarded a gallantry medal from the Government of South Vietnam in 1970. He wrote “1970 – Cross of Gallantry with Bronze Star”. He is not wearing that medal in the photograph, the medals he is wearing are:

Australian Active Service Medal  1945-75 -                                              Entitled

Vietnam Medal   -                                                                                      Entitled

Australian Service Medal 1945/1975 with clasp SE Asia  -                       Not entitled

Defence Force Service Medal (missing 15 year clasp) –                          Not entitled

Commemoration of National Service Medal –                                           Entitled

Australian Defence Medal –                                                                      Entitled

Vietnam Campaign Medal –                                                                      Not entitled

National Service Unofficial self purchased medal (Tin) –                          Must not be worn by anyone.


In summary Fleming should be wearing only four medals – not eight.




Shown above is Fleming’s service history, this history proves that Fleming is not entitled to wear four of the medals. In summary Fleming had two periods of service with a total of less than 8 years service. He spent less than 90 days in Vietnam and was evacuated due to ill health not related to enemy action.

Medals he is NOT entitled to wear

Australian Service Medal 1945/1975 with clasp SE Asia

Fleming’s only posting to South East Asia was to Vietnam and for that he was awarded the Australian Active Service Medal and the Vietnam medal.

Defence Force Service medal

Awarded for fifteen years efficient service completed on or after 14 February 1975 counted as qualifying service. The qualifying period is not less than 12 years permanent service with a period of up to three years Reserve service allowed to be counted towards the 15 years qualification period. Clasps were awarded for each additional five years of permanent service

Vietnam Campaign Medal

The Australian government maintained the basic qualifying criteria specified by the Republic of Vietnam for allied troops. To be eligible for the medal a person must have completed a minimum period of 181 days, either continuous or aggregated, unless:

killed on active service (KIA);

wounded in action i.e. classified as a Battle Casualty and evacuated as a result of those wounds; or

captured and later released or escaped.

Note that medical evacuation from the area of operations for any reasons other than wounds received in action does not constitute an exemption from meeting the minimum qualifying period.

National Service Unofficial Medal Self purchased medal

This is a worthless piece of junk. Some ex National Servicemen purchased and wore it prior to the issue of the official National Service Commemorative Medal

Below is the signed Application to join an Ex Service Organisation  where he has written that 1970 he was awarded the Vietnamese medal “Cross of Gallantry with Bronze Star”. Note also that he has wrongly included the “Vietnam Campaign Medal”. A copy of the application is shown here.



Fleming served in the Australian Defence Force for an aggregate of less than eight years and should have been proud of that, however, he has chosen to enhance his service by adding medals to which he is not entitled, therefore he is a wannabe.  We wrote to Fleming requesting he produce evidence of his entitlement to the medals he wears. He chose to ignore us.

Fleming has earned his right to be named and shamed on our web site.  Before other genuine veterans embark on a similar dishonest course they should understand that ANZMI has veteran supporters the length and breadth of Australia and those who cheat will be observed, reported and featured on our web site.


This is published in the public interest, particularly that of the Vietnam Veteran Community. All information presented here is fact and the truth. Reports from private citizens are supported by statements of fact and statutory declarations.

Surname: Fleming
Christian Names: Andrew
Country: Australia
State or Province: VIC
City or Town: Echuca
Service #: R134401
Service: R
Commencement of service: 30 Mar 83
Completion of service: 30 Aug 09
Case Notes:




Andrew Fleming is a well known identity around Echuca and Beechworth in Victoria. He separated from the Royal Australian Navy in March, 2004 after 21 years. He then transferred to the RAN Reserves and served in that capacity until August, 2009.

Since his discharge in 2009, he has attended the Echuca RSL and the Beechworth RSL on Anzac Days and other commemoration days dressed in his former Royal Australian Navy Uniform with medals.

He is a former President of the Echuca RSL Sub Branch.

Below is a photograph of Fleming leading the Echuca Anzac Day march recently.
Marching behind him and in front of genuine returned Vietnam veterans, are two uniformed Special Air Service Regiment (SASR) imposters Jan Bier and Michael Woolard. Bier is also a local Echuca resident. Both these imposters appear separately on Anzmi.


In the above photographs, Fleming is wearing the following medals.

1. Australian Active Service Medal, (AASM) two clasps. First clasp East Timor. Second clasp unknown.
2. Australian Service Medal, (ASM) Clasp Kuwait.
3. Australian Operational Service Medal. Border Protection. (AOSM)
4. Defence Force Service Medal. (DFSM)
5. Australian Defence Medal. (ADM)
6. United Nations Transitional Administration – East Timor. - UNTAET.

On the right side, Fleming is wearing the Navy “Individual Readiness Notification Badge”. (IRN) This is the Navy equivalent of the Army AIRN badge. (Army Individual Readiness Notification Badge)

“These badges are worn on the right breast and indicate that the individual is currently ready and able to be deployed overseas on operations in his/her normal posting.”

The above photograph was taken at the Beechworth RSL Sub Branch, Victoria, on
Anzac Day 2015. Fleming had discharged from the Royal Australian Navy Reserves in August, 2009. He still wears his uniform with rank and badges as if he is a current member of the Navy. There is no possible way that Fleming is entitled to wear the Individual Readiness Notification Badge. (IRN) He would be out of date on medical, physical training, etc. He is purporting to be a fully ready sea going sailor, when he had discharged some five years beforehand.

Fleming wears at least two medal awards that he is not entitled to. The second unknown operational clasp on his AASM has not been awarded. He would be entitled to the East Timor clasp but this is the only active service area he deployed to in his Navy Service.

The second non entitled award is the UNTAET medal, the last medal on his rack.

We have received notification from former crewmates of Fleming that he is not entitled to wear the UNTAET medal as he did not fulfil the required deployment time for this medal. We were informed that Fleming flew out of the qualifying area of East Timor well short of the 90 consecutive service days that he was required to complete for this award.

We were also told of Fleming’s boasts of how easy it was to “beat the system” as far as qualifying for Military Medals is concerned.

The below mentioned photograph depicts the UNTAET medal.

The UNTAET medal was issued for 90 days service in the qualifying area (East Timor) between 20 February, 2000 and the 19 May, 2002.

The criteria for this medal is as follows -;

UNAMET/UNTAET medal was established on 9 December 1999. The ribbon has two outer bands of UN blue, representing the UN presence in East Timor. Inside the two bands, there are two equal bars - closest to the blue, the bar is crimson, with the bar closest to the centre being sunrise yellow. These colours represent the brilliant and spectacular sunrises and sunsets experienced in East Timor. The centre of the ribbon is a band of white, traditionally the colour of peace and hope, the goal this Mission seeks to achieve.

Qualifying time of service for the reception of UNAMET/UNTAET medal is 90 days.

Every Defence Force member who served in East Timor or East Timor waters at the relevant time of qualifying for this medal knows that the time prescribed is 90 days.

We contacted former RAN Petty Officer Naval Police Officer/Coxswain Fleming and invited him respond to reports from his fellow colleagues that he was not entitled to this award.

Fleming stated that he was posted to the HMAS Wewak and had deployments to Operation Tanager that satisfied the criteria for the awarding of the medal. He was in no doubt.

Fleming then sent documentation from the Australian Government Honours and Awards Department confirming that he had been awarded the 6 medals and one clasp mentioned above, in particular, the UNTAET medal. A problem for Fleming though, is that he wears two clasps on the AASM for operational service and the document he sent to us clearly states that he has only been awarded one, East Timor.

Another document he sent to us was a copy of a dispatch dated the 28 May, 2001, (List 19) from Australian Defence Headquarters (ADHQ) to all ratings who served on the HMAS Wewak in the relevant period noting their UNTAET entitlement. The name of R134401 PONPC. A.A. Fleming appears on this document.

However, in this document, it is also made clear to all recipients that -;

"Requests concerning the issue and eligibility of awards should be directed to the Australian National Command Element. – East Timor. Not DHA. Before enquiring about eligibility, personnel should note that to qualify for the UNTAET medal they had to serve with the UN or on Operation Tanager for 90 consecutive days. Service with INTERFET and deployments of less than 90 days with the UN do not qualify for the UNTAET medal".

This document goes further and states that the 90 days must be consecutive days.

A copy of this dispatch was sent to all crew members of the HMAS Wewak who the United Nations issuing body had been notified of their eligibility.

Inquiries with his colleagues revealed that PONPC Andrew Fleming was posted to the HMAS Wewak on the 14 February, 2000. The HMAS Wewak was a Landing Craft Heavy vessel. (LCH) and had a crew of thirteen personnel.

Between the 14 February, 2000 and the 29 October, 2000, Fleming served on the HMAS Wewak in East Timor waters on two occasions to qualify for Operation Tanager service during this time. We have been advised that he served for 29 days on the Ship from the Mid July to Mid August, 2000 and for 31 days from Mid September to Mid October 2000. All up a total of 60 days and not consecutive days as required, and not 90 days as required.

Operation Tanager was conducted between the dates of the 20 February, 2000 and the 19 May, 2002. It was concerned with the provision of Australian forces in support of the United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET) until Independence day in May 2002.

Now to the reader out there, this may seem trivial and unworthy of Fleming appearing on this site.

However, as we continued to research his claims to this award we were contacted by former colleagues who provided evidence that Fleming, prior to leaving the ship in October, 2000, had arranged for a false entry to be made on his PM Keys records (personnel records) by a close mate after he transferred off the ship and flew out of East Timor, that would add to his qualifying time for the UNTAET award.

It was discovered that a false entry was indeed made by a senior rating who had access to the Ships Operations Log functions, that indicates and confirms that he was again deployed for a third time to the HMAS Wewak on the 22 January, 2001 to the 4 February, 2001, where he accumulated a further thirteen days for Operation Tanager qualifying service.

This information had obviously been confirmed by signal from the HMAS Wewak to the Department of the Navy Office “by his mate”, who had access to PM keys data entry and who had been posted onto the ship at that time.

This false advice was then recorded on Fleming’s PM keys record, which would normally be automatically downloaded and subsequently sent to the appropriate Department for Fleming's records to be noted, the United Nations Administrative Department notified, and a UNTAET medal issued upon request. There would be no further checks. It was all there on his PM Keys record. Easy.

The United Nations (UN) Administrative body would rely on information provided to them by the Royal Australian Navy and/or the Department of Defence. The UN would have no reason to doubt advice provided to them from the RAN in regards to sailors entitlements and qualifying periods of service.

The problem for Fleming though, is that at the identical time of his alleged third deployment to HMAS Wewak on Operation Tanager in January, 2001 to February, 2001 , he had already been transferred off the ship since October 2000 and was subsequently posted to HMAS Cerberus, a Shore Base Establishment in Melbourne, Victoria, where he had reported medical problems of being “sick -injured.”

Our informants advised us that he remained at HMAS Cerberus from 15 January 2001 to 17 April 2001. This includes the time he was supposed to be serving on the HMAS Wewak on Operation Tanager in East Timor for his alleged third deployment.

So here we have one version stating that he was on operational service in East Timor accumulating days for a UNTAET medal and at the same time he is on “Medical –sick-injured” duties at HMAS Cerberus, in Melbourne, Victoria.

When we first contacted Fleming he was in no doubt that he qualified for all his awards and he confidently referred us to Honours and Awards for any further inquiries and documentary proof.

We then advised Fleming that we thought that his UNTAET award was fraudulently obtained and that we would be notifying the relevant Government authorities.

Within a few days of this e mail being sent, all photographs of himself wearing a Naval uniform, medals, rank and IRN badge on his Face Book site and the Beechworth RSL Sub Branch website were removed.

Coincidentally, also within a few days of this E mail being sent, a close friend of Flemings, who relieved him on the HMAS Wewak, resigned from his position as President of a Victorian RSL Sub Branch for personal reasons due to his intentions of extensive travel in Asia and Europe. We will not divulge his name here.

In addition to wearing the UNTAET medal fraudulently, Fleming also wears a second unknown operational clasp on the AASM. His only operational service is East Timor for 60 days aggregate on Operation Tanager. For this he was awarded the AASM and East Timor Clasp. He had service in Kuwait, but this was a prescribed "non war like area" at the time he served. For this he was awarded the Australian Service Medal (ASM) with clasp Kuwait.

Below is a photograph clearly depicting Fleming in his Navy uniform wearing the second unknown and unawarded operational clasp on his AASM. (First medal).

We have also been informed by his colleagues that he claims that he was involved in a “fire fight” whilst he was in Kuwait. Fleming however, is the only person who can remember this “fire fight” and his colleagues have no recollection of it.

In 2001, Fleming was a Petty Officer, Naval Police, in the Royal Australian Navy when he was charged with a number of fraud related offences. He appeared before a Court Martial, was convicted and demoted to the rank of Leading Seaman. He lost 10 years in seniority. Strangely though, he was subsequently promoted to Petty Officer again sometime later in the same Branch as a Naval Police Officer/Coxswain.

Although Fleming has removed all photographs of himself in uniform with medals from the internet, we did save some photographs to remind him of his unlawful behaviour in claiming at least one medal and one clasp fraudulently that he well knows he has no entitlement to.

Fleming can produce as many documents as he likes confirming his UNTAET Medal award. However, he cannot produce evidence that he served for a 90 day consecutive period to earn it. Something is amiss.

When requested, he also could not provide any evidence for the award of the second operational clasp that is affixed to his Australian Active Service Medal (AASM) as shown in the photographs.

The RAN and Honours and Awards might like to investigate the claims Fleming makes about his other medals including the Australian Operational Service Medal (AOSM).

Both the "Falsification of a Government Record" and "False data entry", are criminal offences under the Criminal Code Act 1985. There is no statute barred time limitation.

We recently contacted Fleming's Commanding Officer on the HMAS Wewak, Lieutenant Commander Scott Martinsen who resides in Queensland. Mr Martinsen replied,

Scott Martinsen 9.15am.

In response to your above request, Mr.Martinsen is not interested in discussing his career in the RAN, and in particular, the role he played as Commanding Officer, HMAS Wewak during Operation Tanager, now or in the future. We wish you all the best for your future research.


Fishsakara Team

We are not suggesting that former Lieutenant Commander Scott Martinsen has done anything wrong, however, we are disappointed that he declined to assist us in regards to circumstances and clarification of the UNTAET medal awarded to himself and his crew, in particular, former Petty Officer and Naval Police Officer/Coxswain Andrew Fleming.

Although this incident occurred some time ago, the Royal Australian Navy and the Department of Defence should investigate this serious matter and take stern action to ensure that similar fraudulent entries relating to PM Keys entries and corresponding medal entitlements was/is not a common occurrence, particularly on the HMAS Wewak during Operation Tanager from 20 February, 2000 to the 19 May, 2002.

It would not be difficult for a Royal Australian Navy investigator to identify the senior rating responsible for initiating the false entry on Fleming's PM Keys record and instigating appropriate action against both of them.

Also if other HMAS Wewak crew members were complicit in identical circumstances and awarded themselves UNTAET medals when the 90 consecutive day requirement for Operation Tanager was not fulfilled.

We have the former senior rating's name and current address who we believe made the false entry regarding Fleming's alleged service and we look forward to an RAN Investigator contacting us. We also have a list of the names of HMAS Wewak crew members awarded the UNTAET medal.

An update on this matter will be provided when appropriate.

Two other high ranking Naval Police Officers also appear on this site for wearing unawarded medals on their Naval Uniforms. -;

Current Warrant Officer Peter John Ritchie

Former Petty Officer/Coxswain Christopher Ross Petersen.

All information published on this site is corroborated by photographs and other documentation.

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