BAFTAS, Corruption, the Charity Commission and Groucho Club

This press release from the Universal Film & Festival Organisation raises some interesting points.

  • Massive corruption and malpractice in BAFTA
  • Close connections between BAFTA and the Groucho Club (“joined at the hip”). The Groucho Club has been previously exposed by Tyrone Murphy for child sexual abuse Groucho Club and Child Sexual Abuse [1]
  • BAFTA is a charity. The overseeing body of charities and BAFTA is the Charity Commission which however relies on the trustees of the Charity to follow up on any investigation – meaning the Charity Commission is toothless as it relies on the fraudsters to police their own fraud!

Tweets can be found on twitter under #BaftaCorruption

Press Release from Universal Film & Festival Organisation

BAFTA has been slammed by independent industry watchdog for double standards and hypocrisy over their public announcement that BAFTA is looking to Stamp Out “Pernicious” working practices in the industry.

The founder of the industry watchdog, the Universal Film and Festival Organisation (UFFO) Tyrone D Murphy, a former BAFTA committee member has slammed the BAFTA executive for the farcical attempt at occupying the moral high ground and offering moral leadership in a time when the industry is in a state of crisis.

Murphy served on the BAFTA Committee for two years and compiled a 26-page report which outlined many corrupt practices at the BAFTA charity. The report on corruption and mismanagement contains evidence for the bulk of the allegations. Murphy is a former investigator and surveillance specialist who has been heading up the UFFO movement aimed at stamping out fraudulent activity at film festivals and awards prior to joining the BAFTA committee.

The issues raised in Murphy’s report include some very serious allegations. These include the switching of awards, giving awards to friends, blocking awards for political reasons, fraudulent committee elections and vice chair elections, members not being informed about elections, committee members and staff not declaring “conflicts of interest”, the leaking of the entire BAFTA members database on three separate occasions, another BAFTA database freely on sale on the internet after the suspected hacking of BAFTA servers, BAFTA committee members being cheated out of their positions, the BAFTA Branches in the regions not adhering to Company or Charity Law, members of the executive completely unaware of the legal structure of the BAFTA branches, bullying and intimidation and the list goes on.

Murphy said, “When I became a committee member, I knew exactly what to look for insofar as corruption was concerned given my experience with the Universal Film & Festival Organisation. However, I was astounded at the level of mismanagement and casual corruption within the charity. I was even more surprised after I presented the “BAFTA Corruption Report” to the BAFTA executive outlining some very serious issues of corruption and mismanagement at the charity. They simply tried to cover it up and expected me to go along with it”.

After Murphy refused to go along with the coverup, he advised the executive that an investigation into the allegations should be conducted by an external body as the nature of the allegations was so serious. In addition, some members of the BAFTA executive were included in the report; they were therefore in a conflicted position. However, the BAFTA executive would not hear of it and tasked a media solicitor who was also a BAFTA trustee to conduct an investigation.

Murphy then advised the BAFTA executive to secure additional evidence of corruption he identified from one of the BAFTA offices. He also pointed out on numerous occasions, “you cannot investigate without evidence”. What followed seems to be a half-hearted flawed investigation by the BAFTA executive simply for appearance’s sake, going through the motions. The BAFTA executive absolved everyone (including themselves) of any wrongdoing while issuing the same old rhetoric we have all become so familiar with in such cases. “Mistakes were made, lessons have been learned and now we move on.”

Tyrone D Murphy is no stranger to controversy. He was the subject of a historic libel action instigated against him by the famous “Groucho Club”. The Groucho Club lost the case in a very embarrassing way after Murphy demolished their case as a litigant in person. Murphy later went on to publish numerous articles on issues such as rape at the club, child abuse on the Groucho clubs own members forum and sexual harassment of staff and much more.

After the BAFTA executive embarked on a coverup, Murphy sent the report to the Charity Commission. However, this is problematic as only a trustee for a charity can follow up on any investigation. The charity commission will not discuss a case with anyone who makes a report. It begs the question, what happens when its the trustees are the subject of the allegations of wrongdoing?. The charity commission has only one version and that is from the very people accused of wrongdoing. This is where the old rhetoric kicks in once again. “Mistakes were made, lessons have been learned, and now we move on.”

Margaret Hodge MP, the chair of the public accounts committee, said the charity commission “risks undermining public trust” in charities. “It is clear that the Charity Commission is not fit for purpose. We have little confidence in the Commission’s ability to put right its problems and failings.

Murphy called for a motion of no confidence in the BAFTA Trustees and management for their systemic failure to tackle the corrupt elections and fraudulent awards at the charity. However, the BAFTA executive then blocked Murphy’s access to the social media sites and to the BAFTA members.

The BAFTA executive also took control of the BAFTA members Facebook group away from its own members in an attempt to control the information. BAFTA members could not openly discuss any BAFTA contentious issues without it being heavily moderated by the BAFTA executive. Members took the drastic step of removing the BAFTA head of membership and the BAFTA Chair from the facebook group. This did not sit well with the Chair and its believed this is why the group was taken from the members.

During a BAFTA AGM, the charity trustees are obliged by law to be transparent and accountable to its members. However, the 2016 AGM, the BAFTA executive refused point blank to be accountable and transparent on any of the issues despite the overriding obligation that all BAFTA trustees have to its members.

However, the BAFTA executive brought up a sanitised version of the allegations early in the evening and completely trivialised the allegations. When it came to the Q&A later in the evening, the time when all BAFTA members had the opportunity to seek answers, the BAFTA executive refused to reply to questions on the corruption allegations.

When Murphy challenged the BAFTA Chair, Jane Lush in relation to one of the fraudulent awards that was given to a friend by two committee members, the BAFTA Chair and Vice Chair both stated to BAFTA members that the recipient of the fraudulent award had actually won the award. The AGM became very heated and tense when Murphy responded to the assertions by the BAFTA executive that the recipient of the fake award had won nothing and it was a fraudulent award.

Murphy says. “This new move by the BAFTA executive reeks of political shenanigans. While stamping Out “Pernicious” working practices in the industry should always be the remit of industry organisations, I agree with that, this is what we have been trying to achieve since 2011 with UFFO. We also tried to do the same at the BAFTA charity without success. How can the BAFTA executive now attempt to spearhead such an endeavour when it does not have a moral leg to stand on? BAFTA is the very epiphany of pernicious practices, bullying and intimidation are rife and its how the executive remains in control. There is a culture of fear and intimidation at the BAFTA charity where members and committee members alike are afraid to speak out on any issues for fear of career suicide”.

The BAFTA Chair, Jane Lush was quoted as saying “We too are determined that the brave revelations, and make no mistake, they were very brave, become a watershed moment for a real lasting change across the workforce in film, game and television,”

While these words sound really impressive and important, we must ask ourselves, If this is really the case and the BAFTA position is a genuine one, then why did Tyrone D Murphy, the festival investigator not receive the same recognition and appreciation when he came forward to the BAFTA Executive about the corruption and fraud at the charity?. Instead, he was faced with “Pernicious” working practices for exposing corruption and faced expulsion from the charity after 14 years under Jane Lush’s leadership.

Jane Lush has been involved in a number of controversial situations at the BBC including allegations made by a former BBC newsreader, Natasha Kaplinsky. She told how she felt Lush and her junior managers had intimidated her into participating in the BBC’s high profile Strictly Come Dancing entertainment programme in 2003.

There are too many allegations in Murphy’s report to list here, but this one seems to sum it up. The BAFTA Executives reaction to one of the fraudulent awards was to attempt to legitimatise the award via a rather pernicious process titled “retrospective re-approval”. However, how can such a blatant corrupt award be re-approved when it was never approved by anyone in the first place.

The BAFTA executives attempt to transform a statuette award that is corrupt and fraudulent in every way imaginable into a legitimate award has further corrupted the award selection process and called the entire BAFTA award selection process into disrepute.

PRESS BE PREPARED – BAFTA is ready and waiting for the press to ask any questions about this fraudulent award. Amanda Berry, the BAFTA CEO informed Tyrone D Murphy that her reaction to any press interest would be the following, “if a member of the press asks me about this award, I will say, the entire award selection process was not correctly adhered to”

Murphy has said, “I ask myself, will any journalist really fall for this rubbish? Lets put this into perspective on this specific issue, no single part of the BAFTA award selection process was adhered to in any way. This was a matter of a couple of long-standing committee members who removed a BAFTA statuette from the office without any adherence to any formal process, nor did they receive any permission and then gave it to their friend. This was then passed off as a legitimate award. Now the BAFTA executive has gone farther by excusing this corruption and are spinning it as a real award. That’s how it works with many people at BAFTA, egocentric and self-serving, they do what they like, are not answerable to anyone and any member who dares to speak out is kicked out of the BAFTA organisation”.

While on the committee, Murphy also brought up the issue of BAFTA’s staunch support for the Groucho Club. After informing the BAFTA Chair of the revelations of Child abuse on the Groucho Club private members forum, the rapes at the Groucho club and sexual assault of staff, the BAFTA Chair told him that the Groucho Club and BAFTA are joined at the hip. Murphy said, “it is unconscionable that BAFTA would still promote and support the Groucho Club membership to BAFTA members despite these revelations”.

Given the very public and dark shadow hanging over the Groucho club on the issues of child abuse on their member’s forum, rape and sexual abuse, it is a reasonable question to ask. Why does the BAFTA executive support and promote Groucho Club membership to BAFTA members while on the other hand speaking out on the Harvey Weinstein issue and kicking him out of the charity, surely the same rule should apply.

BAFTA terminated Tyrone D Murphy’s Membership after fourteen years. Their reasoning under Jane Lush as CEO of BAFTA was that Murphy was embarrassing the Charity. Well, corruption tends to be a very embarrassing affair, however, covering up the corruption is even more embarrassing particularly for the very people who have a moral responsibility to stamp it out.

Murphy was bullied and driven from the BAFTA Charity for exposing corruption which is entirely unacceptable. How can it be possible for people in a position of power to act in such an appalling way with complete impunity? Who is now going to stamp out the pernicious working practices that thrive under some very egocentric and self-motivated individuals in the outdated power structures at the BAFTA Charity?

BAFTA is supposed to be a Charity, is it not?.

Universal Film & Festival Organisation, info@uffo.orghttp://www.uffo.org

Tina Hobbs, Press Department

 

  • The Sanctuary for the Abused [A] has advice on how to prevent triggers.
  • National Association for People Abused in Childhood [B] has a freephone helpline and has links to local support groups.
  • One in Four [C]
  • Havoca [D].
  • Useful post on Triggers [E]  from SurvivorsJustice [F] blog.
  • Jim Hoppers pages on Mindfulness [G]  and Meditation [H] may be useful.
  • Hwaairfan blog An Indigenous Australian Approach to Healing Trauma  [J]
  • Survivors UK for victims and survivors of male rape or the sexual abuse of men [K]
  • Voicing CSA group [L] helps arrange survivors meetings in your area
  • A Prescription for me blog Various emotional support links [M]
  • Fresh Start Foundation Scottish not for profit group, helping child sexual abuse victims & survivors  [N]

 

Links

[1] 2014 Jul 29 Cathy Fox Blog Groucho Club and Child Sexual Abuse https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2014/07/29/groucho-club-and-child-sexual-abuse/

[2]

Let justice be done though the heavens fall – Fiat justitia ruat cælum

 

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About cathy fox blog on Child Abuse

the truth will out, the truth will shout, the truth will set us free...
This entry was posted in cathy fox blog, Child Abuse, Child sexual abuse, Hollywood, London and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to BAFTAS, Corruption, the Charity Commission and Groucho Club

  1. Pingback: cathy fox BAFTAS Corruption, the Charity Commission and Groucho Club | HOLLIE GREIG JUSTICE : SUPPORTING FRESH START @FSFtruthjustice

  2. Pingback: BAFTAS, Corruption, the Charity Commission and Groucho Club | cathy fox blog on child abuse | circusbuoy

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