Friday, 16 October 2015

Jacobs crackers: the demise of a celebrity lawyer.

I have written before about the showbiz, celebrity lawyer David Jacobs; specifically concerning his involvement with Tara Browne’s estranged wife and her attempts to regain custody of their two children.
Epstein and Jacobs

It appears that, in the months prior to his death, he was attempting to follow Brian Epstein into the world of artist management having signed a band by the name of The Anan.

Despite Jacobs' patronage The Anan were never destined to become the next big thing, but the article is quite interesting, particularly when revealing that the band had formerly been known as The U2 – God only knows how they thought they were going to sell any records with a name like that!

Jacobs’ main claim to Beatle fame, however, comes from the disastrous Seltaeb (Beatle’s backwards for all you Crowley/Iamaphoney fans) deal in which Epstein and Jacobs somehow managed to give away the Beatles’ merchandising rights for next to nothing.

The lucky recipient of this enormous cash-cow was a Kings Road dandy by the name of Nicky Byrne who found himself in the fortuitous position of acquiring a deal giving him a 90/10 split, in his favour, of the royalty proceeds. Now this was a truly monumental faux-pas as unscrupulous manufacturers discovered that you could sell literally anything that was Beatle branded: T-shirts, toothpaste, lunch-boxes, wigs, bubble gum, Beatles-breath-in-a-can, hoax death stories; even cold-sick-in-a-cup (alright, I made that one up) would be snapped up by eager Beatlemaniacs. For Byrne it was a literal licence to print money.

History, however, has been, surprisingly, generous to Epstein and Jacobs over this matter, sighting that they could not possibly have foreseen just how lucrative the fledgling merchandise business would become, nevertheless, it troubles me slightly that the beneficiary of this massive windfall should be an already wealthy young member of the Chelsea set. 

I have already detailed the high-speed, high-octane adventures of Tara Browne and viewed with interest the failed, Beatle-backed nightclub ambitions of Kevin MacDonald so it was with much interest that I read about Nicky Byrne’s previous incarnation as a nightclub host.

The book extract linked names the club in question as the Condor Club but it was, in fact, the El Condor Club and it comes with a very interesting history. The El Condor was owned, at the time, by one Peter Rachman; a notorious London landlord who was friendly with Dr Stephen Ward of Profumo Affair fame; a subject upon which I have written previously.

It is not really within the scope of this article to re-examine those links too closely suffice it to say that Ward was, most likely, a Monarch mind-controller working for MI5 whose actions brought down a government.

Ward, having upset the Establishment applecart, was unsurprisingly dragged before the courts on this matter and was represented by David Jacobs.

Ward, after having been found guilty of living off immoral earnings, promptly committed ‘suicide’ with an overdose of sleeping pills.

Ward had been building up a portfolio of sexual blackmail material: photographs, films, witness statements etc. via his harem of MK’ed girls. It is rumoured, though one cannot possibly know, that the contents of this portfolio were so dynamite that it would have possibly brought down the British monarchy. A significant portion of this portfolio had been left, for safe keeping, with his lawyer who would also handle the details of his client’s estate post mortem. This lawyer was David Jacobs.

Still I guess it was just a coincidence that the guy who Jacobs’ should give the lucrative Beatles merch gig to was an ex-employee of a man who was highly implicated in the whole Profumo affair? A scandal that revolved around mind-control.

So I guess it was also a coincidence that another of Jacobs' clients was the actor Laurence Harvey – the original Manchurian Candidate, a movie about a mind-control victim - who starred in the Magic Christian with Ringo Starr?

Just like it was a coincidence that Jacobs' most famous client, Brian Epstein, should die in precisely the same manner as Stephen Ward?

Jacobs was well known on the London legal scene and would often attend court wearing full make-up. He had a stellar clientele including Sir Laurence Olivier, Shirley Bassey, Marlene Dietrich, Diana Dors, Judy Garland and the Rolling Stones. He had represented Liberace in his successful libel case against the Daily Mirror, who famously accused Liberace of being "this deadly, winking, sniggering, snuggling, chromium-plated, scent-impregnated, luminous, quivering, giggling, fruit-flavoured, mincing, ice-covered head of mother love." 

But Jacobs’ most famous client was Brian Epstein and the Beatles. Indeed, Jacobs’ Hove residence was the, somewhat less than exotic, location for Ringo Starr’s honeymoon following the drummer’s first wedding in 1965.
Jacobs died in 1968; dangling from a length of silk-cord tied to a beam in his garage, elegant even in death; seemingly yet another suicide victim. Numerous theories abound as to why, or indeed if, he committed suicide, but perhaps the most telling aside came from the actress Suzanna Leigh who, moments after hearing of Jacobs’ passing, received an invitation to lunch in the post from the recently expired lawyer. Clearly if he did top himself it wasn’t a hugely premeditated event.

Rumours abound that our old friends the Kray twins offed Jacobs for declining their tempting offer for him to mount their defence against, subsequently proven, murder charges. I know not if these rumours are true, however, perhaps another interesting defence case he took shortly before his ‘suicide’ is worth resurrecting?

An article appeared in the Daily Mail on Saturday, August 3rd, 1968 concerning one Joseph de Havilland, a Hungarian painter and decorator, who had been discovered on Hampstead Heath crucified on a cross.

My interest was sparked by the headline ‘man on a cross ‘black magic’’ but further investigation reveals some other intriguing nuggets and curios. 

Firstly, why would our ‘celebrity lawyer’ bother taking a somewhat low-brow and trite case such as this?

Well it appears our man was himself interrogated by police on this matter; quite on what grounds is unclear, however, the plod clearly thought of him as being someone of interest and this, apparently, was enough to pique Jacobs' professional interest.

Secondly, the men Jacobs' was defending were barred, by law, from using as their defence the fact that de Havilland had asked to be nailed to the cross. 

Under British law, a victim cannot consent to be injured: unless the activity which causes the injury might be “socially useful”.

What counts as “socially useful” in the eyes of the law (e.g. boxing) and what doesn’t (e.g. consensual homosexual sadomasochism) remains a hotly contested issue?

Bizarre, and extreme, as that is the case for the prosecution makes for illuminating reading.

Isn’t that interesting? A man in a ‘semi-trance’ with six-inch nails hammered into his bloodless hands had done so in order that photographs of his ordeal can be taken and sold for a profit.

Interesting also that the man charged with defending the assailants should be a man who has been assigned legal responsibility for a large portfolio of sexual blackmail material and who implies, in court, that the crucifixion was part of some, unspecified, ‘black magic’.

So, what to make of this ‘defence’? We do not know what de Havilland’s motives for being crucified were but playing the black magic card seems a high-risk strategy; certainly not one designed to endear you to either judge or jury.

It appears that Mr Jacobs', legally denied the opportunity to tell the truth, has concocted the black magic tale to either divert attention away from the intention to photograph and make money from this scheme, or to obscure the sadomasochistic, homosexual aspect of the case.

The latter supposition certainly seems the more likely, particularly in light of the following.

The website from which I gleaned a lot of this information contends that shortly after Jacobs' death he left ‘behind almost indecipherable notes. Notes which led to police questioning of several gentlemen, including well-known public figures, about parties which had taken place at country estates and flats across England.

Information about the precise nature of these parties has never been made publicly available.’

Just like a lot of the Ward/Profumo documents which are currently unavailable to public scrutiny until 2046.

However, we can safely deduce that the country estate mentioned is most likely Cliveden, home of the Astor family and the birthplace of the Profumo scandal, whilst the afore-mentioned Peter Rachman specialised in leasing flats to prostitutes and parties took place at locations as diverse as Lord Boothby’s flat, Alan ‘Fluff’ Freeman’s flat and Dolphin Square. 

So, could Jacobs' death actually be connected with materials he had in his possession that he had accumulated over his career?

This article claims that some of the material – sketches by Stephen Ward – landed up in the hands of one of Jacobs' clerks. Rather than dispose of these, as instructed, it appears the clerk kept them and gave them to an art dealer. Curiously, the article also talks of a nightclub called the Paint Box which offered its clientele the opportunity to sit and ogle a nude – you could draw them too, apparently – that was run by a lady called Adele de Havilland.

Could she have been a relation of Joseph de Havilland? Well, whilst it is, of course, possible I doubt that this coincidence will fly.

Pathe has a wonderful video of the Paint Box.

However, this site claims the Paint Box was then taken over by Diana Dors; star of the Sgt Pepper cover, client of David Jacobs and willing participant in orgies organised by her then husband, Denis Hamilton, that were attended by Stephen Ward and Peter Rachman and that pioneered the use of a two way mirror to record the bedroom gymnastics of its participants. 

The Paint Box video suggests that the club was, in fact, run by Tommy Yeardye, who was a former boyfriend of Diana Dors. 
Dors and Yeardye

Given that the real purpose of the Paint Box was to bypass the laws around nude floorshows – in much the same style as Murray’s Cabaret Club – it could well be that this was a front venue for Ward to recruit potential mind-control victims.

Yeardye’s daughter, Tamara, who runs the Jimmy Choo shoe enterprise married into the powerful Mellon family which has, seeming, connections to the CIA LSD operations.

Altogether an interesting tale with far too many coincidences methinks!

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