4 March 2001

192.com, UK hardcopy publisher of The Big Breach: From Top Secret to Maximum Security, now offers the book free for downloading in the following formats:

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Unzipped - http://thebigbreach.com/download/bbpdf.pdf (1.3MB)

MS Word

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Unzipped - http://thebigbreach.com/download/bbword.doc (2.3MB)


Zipped   - http://thebigbreach.com/download/bbtxt.zip (930KB)

Best to grab these from thebigbreach.com, but if there are problems here are Cryptome mirrors:

PDF Zipped: http://cryptome.org/bbpdf.zip (1.2MB)
Word Zipped: http://cryptome.org/bbword.zip (1.6MB)
TXT Zipped: http://cryptome.org/bbtxt.zip (930KB)

3 March 2001. Thanks to DO.

Source: http://www.thebigbreach.com/tomlinson/statement.htm (JPG, 314KB)

Richard Tomlinson

France, 1 March 2001


To whom it may concern,


I would like to clarify certain misunderstandings about my book, "TheBig Breach", in particular rumours that it was written by Russian intelligence.

Contrary to what certain newspapers, particularly the "Daily Telegraph", the "Sunday Telegraph", and "The Times" have reported, "The Big Breach" was not in any way written, sponsored or published by Russian intelligence or any of their agents. It was written entirely by myself and the text was not added to or altered (except for minor editing changes). I have never even met or spoken to any officers or agents of Russian intelligence, let alone allowed them to have any input into the writing or publication of "The Big Breach".

My belief is that MI6 have spread these rumours (through their agents in the media such as Mr Dominic Lawson, Mr. Andrew Roberts, Dr Christopher Andrew and Mr Oleg Gordievsky) to disrupt sales of the book, discredit me, and to distract public opinion from the central theme of the book, namely that MI6 needs better legal and democratic oversight.

Instead of making these spiteful and unnecessary attacks against me, MI6 should redress their obvious shortcomings. National security will be far better protected once they have done so.

Yours sincerely,

[Signed] R Tomlinson

Source: http://thebigbreach.com/download/bbtxt.zip

Postscript to The Big Breach: From Top Secret to Maximum Security, by Richard Tomlinson


By The Author

In view of the considerable press comment on this book I should like to reply to some of the points raised and make clear my own position in regard to them.

1. The Guardian newspaper did not, as they claimed on January 30, 2001, refuse to serialise the book for 'ethical reasons'. In fact, after a personal visit by their journalists they, together with Fourth Estate publishers, offered me £100,000 for rights. They only withdrew after receiving a letter from the Treasury Solicitors, and after Fourth Estate had a visit from Special Branch to confiscate their computer containing the manuscript.

2. As the Russian publishers assert, they did commission a US journalist living in Washington as editor. His task as with all editors was simply to improve the readability and to make it more enjoyable. Such changes and editing affected no more than 3% of the book and in no sense altered the content or meaning of the book. The book is otherwise exactly as I wrote it save for those editing changes which I approved at all stages.

3. There were no changes of any kind introduced 'by the KGB' and the only change to the original manuscript suggested by Serge Korovin - the name by which I have always known Kirill Chashin - was the inclusion of the death of Sarah. For personal reasons I was reluctant to do so but Serge Korovin felt that it added a human touch.

4. In order to minimise any risk to individuals, I have not used real names where it was appropriate to do so, and to avoid compromising MI6 I have also altered the details surrounding some events. For example the trip to Russia described in the book was in fact two trips; I have also omitted details which related to them and which I judged should not be revealed. It was not, and is not my intention to reveal MI6 secrets which could be damaging to national security.

5. Otherwise the events I have described are true to the best of my knowledge. I have sworn an affidavit to that effect and this can be viewed at http://www.thebigbreach.com/tomlinson/statement.htm.

6. I note that MI6 now claim that this book is untrue or written by the KGB while at the same time assert that they have copyright over it. This is clearly inconsistent. It is also inconsistent with the extreme measures which they have taken to prevent its publication - 13 arrests, injunctions in six countries, and a one-year prison term.

7. I have not described events in this book, which did not happen, during my service. The article by The Times, on February 15th, relating to Obukhov partly happened during my time at MI6; the later information included in the book was not provided by 'the KGB' - as has been claimed - but was published in the Guardian. A search of the Guardian website on Obukhov's name will confirm this.

8. It was true that I was forced under duress to sign an assignment of copyright to the Crown. However, I was not paid £60,000 as reported in The Daily Telegraph, on 21st January 2001, but £15,000 - in the form of a down payment of £3,000 and then £1,000 per month for one year. Although the money was paid, the Crown breached the other terms of the Agreement relating to additional support and assistance (the full copyright assignment from 1997 can be viewed on the Internet at http://www.thebigbreach.com/tomlinson/assignment.htm ). My dispute with MI6 stems from the failure of its personnel department, and to that extent is entirely personal. I am afraid that I was not prepared to go quietly.

9. I have never passed information over to any other intelligence agency but I admit that in anger I did once say to MI6 that I had done so. I regret that. It was not true and I said it only for effect. However, I was approached by the Swiss Secret service and the German Secret Service on two separate occasions and encouraged to pass secret information over to them. On both occasions I refused to do so. Under no circumstances would I ever cooperate with a foreign intelligence service. Accordingly my book does not tell them anything they did not know already, as MI6 knows full well - it is only the public which now knows more than they otherwise would have done.

10. I hope and believe that this book has made a difference to the way in which MI6 is administered - which is the main point of it - and that in future its loyal employees will receive better treatment than I have done. I shall, however, continue my attempts to obtain justice in my own case. This book is not, therefore, the end of the story.

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p.s. Christopher Andrew, who actually wrote the Mitrokhin Archives, charged in a newspaper column that The Big Breach was not well written, so we challenge anyone to compare the two books and offer a prize for anyone who actually read the Mitrokhin Archives cover-to-cover without having been paid to do so!

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