[back] Wakefield GMC Hearing 2007

March 21, 2009

A Character Assassin Caught in the Act

Breaking news By Dan Olmsted and Mark Blaxill
At the source of the General Medical Council’s (GMC) investigation and trial of Dr. Andrew Wakefield lies a man named Brian Deer. In his first Sunday Times article on February 22, 2004, Deer accused Wakefield of launching a “public panic” over the connection between the MMR vaccine and autism by failing to disclose his conflict of interest and participation as an expert witness on behalf of a group of families involved in vaccine litigation against the British government. Since then, Deer has alleged many things. Among them are the following: that he is an independent, investigative journalist; that he is not a complainant in the GMC investigation; that Wakefield is guilty of medical misconduct; and that Wakefield and his co-authors committed scientific fraud.

According to documents obtained by Age of Autism (Melanie Philips of The Spectator reported on these documents last month, but we provide for the first time a copy of the key document HERE and new information on Dr. Wakefield’s complaint against Deer; a copy of Dr. Wakefield's original 3/13 complaint to PCC is HERE and the addendum is HERE. Deer’s claim that he is not the complainant in the GMC investigation is false. In a February 25, 2004 email addressed to Tim Cox-Brown of the GMC, Deer first listed the GMC reference numbers of Drs Andrew Wakefield, John Walker-Smith and Simon Murch, and then wrote the following opening sentence.

“Following an extensive inquiry for the Sunday Times into the origins of the public panic over MMR, I write to ask your permission to lay before you an outline of evidence that you may consider worthy of evaluation with respect of the possibility of serious professional misconduct on the part of the above named registered medical practitioners”


This statement stands in stark contrast to claims Deer has recently made denying he was a complainant in the GMC investigation. On February 19, 2009, amid growing concern over claims that Deer had failed to disclose his conflict, Deer made the following statement on a public blog,

“the GMC’s procedures include monitoring media coverage for possible cases to be referred to fitness to practise committees. The GMC - following its own procedures – then approached me and asked if I had anything to substantiate what had appeared in The Sunday Times. I willingly supplied them with many of my files on the subject.”

In the copy of the document obtained by Age of Autism you can see for yourself that Deer is lying:

• He was not approached with an inquiry from the GMC, rather he approached the GMC himself and was “writing to ask [their] permission” to do so.

• He did not provide substantiation for an existing inquiry, rather he took the initiative himself “to lay before you an outline of evidence.”

• He did not presume that the GMC was following up on his article from three days before in pursuance of its own procedures, rather he urged they follow up on evidence “that you may find worthy of evaluation.”

• He did not merely respond to the GMC’s monitoring procedures, rather he sent Cox-Brown the GMC reference numbers for the three doctors, a clerical detail that only a complainant would think worthy of inclusion.

In her thorough report on Brian Deer’s role in the GMC trial, “A Deer in the Headlights”, Melanie Philips placed Deer’s introductory sentence to Timothy Cox nearly halfway through a lengthy article. We suspect that many may have missed this key statement. It proves clearly that while Deer has represented himself as an objective journalist, he has been reporting on a complaint that he made himself. Playing the dual role of journalist and complainant, Deer has misrepresented himself as an independent party. In the ultimate irony, Deer is guilty of the same offense—failure to disclose a conflict of interest—that he accuses Wakefield of committing. As one source close to the investigation commented, “that’s not just a smoking gun, that’s a video of Brian Deer pulling the trigger.”

In the years since his original article launching a widespread campaign of character assassination against Dr. Wakefield, Deer has written infrequently for The Sunday Times (before his February 8 articles accusing Wakefield and his co-authors of falsifying clinical records, Deer had written nothing for the newspaper since July 15, 2007) and has no other visible means of support. This previously unseen document demonstrates that Deer has lied about his role as a complainant in the GMC. It also raises a disturbing question.

If Brian Deer is lying about his role as a source of the GMC complaint against Dr. Wakefield, what else is he lying about?

Dan Olmsted is Editor and Mark Blaxill is Editor at Large for Age of Autism.


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Jerry has been escorted out of the building. So has another genius who compared Deer to Woodard and Bernstein.

It is very clear from the other documents in Wakefield's second complaint to the PCC, as well as the letter published here, that Deer was trying to exercise pressure to prosecute Wakefield. He was making the running, as several remarks suggest.

For instance on 1 July 2004:

"I trust that you will notify me, in whatever way is appropriate, of how my concerns are progressed."

Or 12 February 2007:

"I’ve several times previously written to the GMC, or to its solicitors, Field Fisher Waterhouse (FFW), regarding my investigations for the Sunday Times and Channel 4 into the serious professional misconduct in which the above named practitioners were involved, between mid-1996 and late 2001, while they were employed at the Royal free hospital, Hampstead. My first email was dated 25 February 2004, summarizing my findings as of that date. I’ve made my submissions as a matter of public duty.

"Although, quite properly, I’ve received no information from FFW, or from the GMC directly, it’s clear from open sources, such as court proceedings and press coverage, that some considerable investment has been committed to looking into the matters I’ve raised."


After all, it is one thing to have an investigation (as proposed by John Reid and supported by Wakefield who did not believe he had anything to hide) and another to mount a prosecution.

Aye to the troll call.

Time to move on.


One thing that you are very obviously missing is a simple fact; Brian Deer is guilty of what you accuse Dr. Wakefield of. I'll capitalize it for you so you can get the picture into your miniscule and obtuse little mind.


You and the rest of the vaccine-gestapo deify him almost as much as you worship Pauly PrOffit, and your little golden boy has been lying the whole time. He was the one that placed the original complaint (something he denies), and he is the one who is smearing his own journalistic integrity by NOT disclosing this to the public. If he lied about this, then how much of his "investigation" into Dr. Wakefield did he also lie about?

He is phony, he is a fabulist, he is a cheat and a con artist. And you and the rest of your "science-based" idiots all fell for his bullshit hook, line and sinker. Something you accuse us of doing with Dr. Wakefield.

Your hypocrisy has been noted. You may move along.

Gee, it does make one wonder, doesn't it? I mean, spending all his days in court, not many articles published. How is the poor man paying his rent? Does he live in public housing? Or is he subsidized by Glaxo?
Hi Jerry


The boss of Mr Deer has just been enrolled onto the board of the biggest vaccine company in the world at a fat, huge, enormous salary for little, no or nothing to do for his money.

I think disclosure laws are currently being passed and next year all sums over 5 GRAND will have to be publically declared.

Funny this move to regularise payments have resulted in a flurry of people being regularised onto the pay packets of the vaccine companies.

I wonder how much was paid to Deer's employers before this regularistion? We may never know now unless they are honest and divulge the ZERO sums they have received from the vaccine companies in secret payouts.

As a thought; if I got paid say half a million a year in secret payouts and then had to stop receiving them as disclosure was coming I think I would opt to "out" myself so the money could still come rolling into my pocket. Thanks you very much GSK.


Let's not forget that neomycin, the antibiotic in MMR vaccines does in fact potentiate the effects of ethyl mercury compounds such as thimerosal which does actually contain an amount of methyl mercury impurity to put it at over the limit of reference for toxic methyl mercury which in itself can only come down as we know more of the harm. (The effect is DESTRUCTION of the brain)

There is no reason why neomycin on its own is harmful but the fact is that vaccines have gone up in use enormously causing adverse effects when used several at once and in this case with mercury compounds which linger in our brains for 20 years and more.

While we argue about who is right or wrong between Deer and others we are seeing 50 babies a week or more around the world developing autism and other illnesses to save the odd person getting a vaccine preventable disease.

And if honesty instead of obfuscation was to return to science we might even get safe vaccines so there are no autism cases and no people getting vaccine preventable illnesses.

In the mean time every regulatory authority in the world knows what toxic compounds don't cause autism but have no clue as to what toxic compound does cause it.

It would be good to do double blind control tests with vaccines as used in the field on the age groups under consideration but that might not be costly in the sense of being expensive for the vaccine companies to do but expensive as it might prove vaccine harm from untried combinations and age at use of vaccines today.

In the mean time deaths from vaccines alone must now be in the millions.

All to help the already fit child get ill and die?

What a liberty! And no one much seems to be able to stop this mayhem?

Re: Jerry at 12:51pm

Jerry, this is silly. Brian Deer brought a complaint about Wakefield et al to the GMC, which holds hearings on medical matters. He was/is a complainant in this matter.

Unless you have something more substantive to offer in this matter, please stop wasting our time. There are important issues to be looked at here. We need to move on to them; otherwise it is as if this thread is being hijacked. I believe the word is a 'troll'.

Consider this example. A professor on staff at a nearby university blogged against a US Senator during a recent election. There was clear and repeated identification on the blog that the professor was teaching students at a nearby University. He posed as just a curious and investigative sort of guy that had the publics’ interest in mind due to his profession.
After a flurry of very critical remarks and stories by the professor and others on his blog, the incumbent lost the election. One big problem though. After the election, it was uncovered and revealed by others that the professor had been paid all along by the political party opposing the incumbent.
If a reporter only submits evidence and accusation to the GMC, then there is no conflict of interest. But clearly when there was a public accusation by a reporter in the press as well as a private accusation to the GMC, with no disclosure to the public of this private role, then this person is a hired character assassin as well as a paid reporter. One conflict of interest is the promotion of the story! And another is the motivation for the accusation!
And back to the professor’s story. He was paid a nice fee for his attack services and then left teaching to go to work for the newly elected Senator. It was prepayment and postpayment for a job well done. Obviously he crossed the ethical line by not revealing his financial interest in the fray. He was a hired gun.

You are still playing "the name game" and not addressing the bigger picture.

According to the GMC website:

..."We have strong and effective legal powers.."

does show that the GMC has power and those who present *a complaint* do so expecting an investigation...so your continual play on words is without merit and getting tiresome.

"Please check the GMC web site. The GMC is a registered charity and is not a court of law. Therefore your point is moot--of no value."

Okay, so if the GMC is not a court of law, how in the world is he a 'complainant' at all? If it's not a court of law, why are you accusing him of being a complainant? If it's not a court of law, accusations of being a complainant are completely useless, i.e. your entire post is moot!

Such disregard for facts! Are you not ashamed, sir?

To put it another way round: as a reporter Deer had an interest in the case against the 3 doctor progressing, but if he took the lead this as he manifestly did, and did not report this, his journalism was compromised.

As we know it was stated in a high court ruling by Judge Eady that Deer had made at least 3 complaints against Wakefield to the GMC in 2004. Whether or not he was named as a complainant by the GMC he did a lot more than just be interviewed by the GMC as background to the case. He actively pursued the prosecution of a case in which he had a professional interest (as the newly puplished letter demonstrates), and he did not report this.

We also know that the GMC lawyers sought to clarify Deer's role as "informant", because his status in the case had put him in professional difficulty (letter of Matthew Lohn (partner Field Fisher Waterhouse) to Deer, May 25, 2005. This, of course, does not clarify the ethics of the issue but just makes everything more opaque.

Brian Deer is hanging by a thread -- hoping that the difference between being a "complainant" and some other artfully and heavily nuanced word for "complaint-bringer" will save him from journalistic infamy. Nice try. It's like Paul Offit, whose career is hanging by the fact that he thinks methyl mercury is toxic but ethyl mercury is a "gentle bacteriostat." i would have to be hanging by either of those threads, journalistically or scientifically. they are distinctions without a difference and show the fundamental ignorance of both of 'em.
Jerry wrote:

"I'm sorry, but none of this proves he is actually a complainant. A complainant in a court of law is one who stands to gain from the conclusion of a case, i.e. a plaintiff."

Please check the GMC web site. The GMC is a registered charity and is not a court of law. Therefore your point is moot--of no value.

I want to hear both sides of any issue and wish that you had something to offer here, but it does not seem as if you do.

Jerry has trashed Jake Crosby here too. I don't think we need to pay him much attention.


So he was just a "material witness"?? How many NY Times reporters get to cover trials in which they are a witness? How many do so without disclosing that fact? The answer is the same as Deer's regard for the truth: ZERO
Jerry's comment is a classic of fact free mud-slinging and clearly shows he did not read the addendum posted here, so I will pull out a few salient facts for the benefit of our readers.

A defendant in a trial is typically permitted to face his accusers, that's one of the bedrocks of the Western legal tradition. The GMC process is a bit unusual, but Wakefield did receive the following letter on April 8, 2004 that plainly indicated that there were specific complaints being brought against him. The letter stated, "“I am writing to confirm that we have received complaints about you from a number of sources."

As part of the hearing process, Wakefield and the other defendants had the right to "discovery", a process whereby they gained access to documents that would otherwise have remained private. Obviously, they asked for the source of the complaints. That is how they obtained the Deer email to Tim Cox-Brown. As for the identity of any other complainants, they received reports of only two others, and here is what the addendum reports on these.

"The two additional complaints included one from an R. Sarkel of 21st Feb 2004 in which the only named doctor being complained about was not one of the Defendants in the current GMC hearing. James Walsh of the GMC responded on 26th Feb 2004 saying that the GMC “will not be taking any further action at this stage”. The second ‘complaint’ was anonymous, purportedly from the Royal Free Hospital. In a memo of 18th March 2004 Tim Cox-Brown of the GMC wrote, “I don’t think there’s much we can do with it, but it looks as though it should probably be kept with the Wakefield papers.”"

Clearly, Brian Deer is the only named individual to file a formal and specific complaint naming the defendants in the trial. Yet Deer asserts that "I did not lay the initial complaint against Wakefield." The evidence is now available for the first time on AoA and is clear and uncomplicated. Deer is a liar.

The GMC - following its own procedures – then approached me and asked if I had anything to substantiate what had appeared in The Sunday Times.--Brian Deer

Jerry, as you can see this, in your opinion, does not make BD the plaintiff, but these documents do, however, make him look like a big, fat liar:) And when someone is a big, fat, liar once.....well, you can fill in the rest....

Arguing semantics in this case is just someone trying to go off topic. Brian Deer should have NEVER been allowed to continue as the journalist to this story. PERIOD! Brian Deer should have been man enough to disclose his connections honestly and openly, PERIOD. How this is all playing out speaks volumes for him as a person.

Has anyone sent this to Keith olberman (SP?)

Whatever you want to call it -- him -- the correct term, "instigator of the latter", "intigator of the former", "complainant", "i.e. a plaintiff", "a material witness", some here are defending a guy who made the complaint, and has continued to report in a maniacal and obsessive manner as if someone else made the complaint, with no visible means of financial support, and who may (disclosure?) very well benefit/profit from his original complaint in a financial manner that as of now, has yet to be shared or discovered. If money is not the issue and again, how does one make a living by being maniacal (?), but instead this is a personal vendetta or some kind of fantasy about saving mankind from those who question vaccine safety -- then maybe Brian Deer needs an evaluation as to his ability to know truth from fiction, legal from illegal, and the simple fact of going to the GMC rather than the GMC coming to him...ie being approached vs doing the approaching.

So to those who like to dissect every word in the autism truths -- "autism vs autism- like" , "autism vs PDD" and now "complainant vs a material witness" -- you guys are getting SO desperate and really need to change these feeble tactics.

However this is sliced, there is a shady and questionable person making allegations that are being shown to be false.