doctor linked to SA germ warfare programme
Mon, 04 Nov 2002
California doctor who committed suicide after being accused in
a murder plot gave deadly germs to apartheid South Africa's
secret chemical and biological weapons programme, CBS'
"60 Minutes" reported on Sunday.
C. Ford met with scientists from South Africa's Project Coast
in the 1980s to discuss chemical and biological warfare,
Wouter Basson, who headed the project, told the programme.
also passed a bag filled with cholera, typhoid, botulism,
anthrax and bubonic plague to a South African military doctor
during a meeting at the house of the South African trade
attaché in California, former FBI informant Peter Fitzpatrick
told "60 Minutes."
Coast, which has been accused of trying to create deadly
bacteria that would only affect blacks, poisoning opponents'
clothing and stockpiling cholera, HIV and anthrax, opened an
offshore bank account to pay Ford, "60 Minutes"
committed suicide after assassination attempt
(49) committed suicide March 2, 2000, just days after a
botched assassination attempt on his business partner at
Biofem Inc., of Irvine, California. The company did not
immediately return a telephone message from The Associated
Press on Saturday.
Ford was behind the shooting, investigators dug up his yard
and found a cache of military-grade weapons and explosives,
according to court documents in California. In his
refrigerator, investigators found jars of germs that cause
typhoid and cholera.
Minutes" reported that sources said an anti-balding agent
Ford had been working on was actually a poison and the company
called Delta G his pharmaceutical company was doing business
with was actually a front for Basson's Project Coast.
gave germ warfare lectures in SA
African prosecutor Torie Pretorius told "60 Minutes"
Ford had visited scientists at a secret military installation
outside Pretoria and given them a lecture on germ warfare,
including how to lace pornographic magazines with germs and
plant them in rebel army barracks.
acquitted in April of 46 counts of murder, fraud and drug
dealing in connection with Project Coast, said the project had
only paid Ford for Aids research, though "60
Minutes" said it had a document saying Ford was paid for
the "acquisition of relevant chemical and biological
FBI sources, the television programme also said authorities
had found a trick umbrella at Ford's house that could inject
poison into a victim, a device reportedly developed by Project
would say that that is impossible," Basson told the
programme. South African prosecutors, including Pretorius,
declined to comment on the television programme and Basson did
not return a telephone message.
Minutes" also reported that the US government was
concerned that Basson might be trying to sell his knowledge of
biological and chemical weapons during several trips he made
to Libya in the 1990s. US intelligence documents also accused
him of trying to reach out to Iran and Iraq, the programme