Case Studies

The ABC Case

Duncan first made waves in 1976, when he wrote GCHQ exposé, The Eavesdroppers for Time Out. But in addition to journalistic plaudits, it brought him to the attention of the British government, who tapped his phones and arrested him in 1977 under the Official Secrets Act 1911.

Secret Society and the Zircon Affair

In 1986, Duncan produced a six-part series for the BBC called Secret Society. So controversial were the contents that two of the episodes were banned.

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Duncan revealed in 1988 the existence of Echelon - a global surveillance network. Ten years later, he would prepare several reports for the European Parliament on the capabilities and abuses of the UKUSA snooping agreement.

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Medical Stories

Following the Zircon Affair, Duncan came out as gay. He turned his attention toward the Aids epidemic and began exposing quack doctors and medical malpractice for TV and print.

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Tobacco story databases and investigations

Duncan began working with the newly formed International Consortium of Investigative Journalism after it's formation in 1997. It was designed as an international, collaborative wing of the Center for Public Integrity. Their first investigations looked at tobacco smuggling, and particularly British American Tobacco. There is a wealth of material on the subject.

You will find links to Duncan's ICIJ pages and additional resources below.

British American Tobacco documents archive

Tobacco firm gained secret access to Blair (Guardian)

Globalink - Tobacco

Tobacco Underground (ICIJ)

Duncan's evidence given to House of Commons (1)

Duncan's evidence given to House of Commons (2)


UK 'Dodgy Dossier' Story

Richard M. Smith's exceptional computer-based exposure of UK governement's deception over Iraq war used 'string search' method to locate plagiarised data.

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