In 2001 I set up a permanent Shuffle DJ Academy business and a base for my DJing and Promoting in Caldicot, on the Industrial Estate, hiring a 300 sq foot office space / warehouse from Monmouthshire County Council. With regular gigs running preclub bar in Cast, Bristol fro the big Scream event and attached work, I had plenty of DJing to get on with. The bulk of the work I was doing was via Arts Council Wales for Newport Arts Council and Monmouthshire Youth Services. I was mainly out on the road in youth clubs and community centres teaching adults, children, the disabled, homeless, deaf children, Council workers, Duke Of Edinburgh Award scheme youngsters, youth offenders and the general public. I was also printing and designing flyers for a variety of businesses and retailing DJ equipment. I was recruited to run a big Community Festival in Duffryn, Newport, a poverty-stricken community. Also, I did voluntary work running Arts workshops for the Disabled in YMCA, Pillgwenlly. As the business expanded I was dabbling more and more in the web for future music and work and also attending studio production courses at Immtech in Cardiff under the tutelage of Lenny from The Nightcrawlers. I had plans to move down to Cardiff with the business after being offered free office space in Cardiff Bay by PROMO CYMRU. I had various guest DJ gigs on and launched a series of 3 large club events across Cardiff (Emporium), Bristol (The Level) and London – The Clinic, Chinatown. I was going to industry events such as PLASA in London and networking well and developing good professional business.
The Mental Services had agreed that I would be permanently taken off their books.
I received support from The Prince’s Trust Charity and had an advisor from them assisting me.
Gwent Police, who I was working alpngside in certain events such as Duffryn Community Festival were, however, continuing their ongoing 24 year investigation into my business, which had started when I first launched events as a DJ / Promoter back in 1995.
I turned the company into a LTD venture due to the enhanced tax incentives introduced by Labour Government and Shuffle Promotions LTD was born.
I couldn’t get professional music insurance and contents insurance for my office. I slept in the office at times to protect equipment and as I was working 20 hour days 7 days a week I didn’t spend much time in bed anyway. I could hear noises outside over a period of weeks and it was preventing me from sleeping. I guessed that I had burglars casing the joint out. One night I decided that I would investigate and sort matter out so went out vigilante style and hid away, leaving lights etc on in the office so it appeared that I was inside. Sure enough there was a big group of people casing the joint. I snuck into back carpark of the industrial estate and found to my dismay about 12-15 Gwent Police Officers lieing on my tin office roof, staring through skylight with cameras. They’d obviously been videoing me asleep or whatever for weeks. I thought well, there is little I can do, so just wandered off and thought to myself of the implications. It was an obvious case of trespassing. I was doing nothing illegal and it was just business interference and harassment.
Later a random social worker from Hywel Dda, Sally Wolfenden, a lady I already disliked, forced entry into the industrial office premises and started threatening me with Mental Health stuff. I said ‘Go Away’ I am officially off your books and she wouldn’t accept this. With police and social services on my case I could no longer be in my office during 9-5 office hours and I needed this time for the preparations of the three big events where there was a large financial outlay. Also I needed to do my paperwork etc and run the business admin. I had to be on the street and mobile based in various venues I worked in or in cafes. My events all suffered from lack of promotion and I ended up making an almost maximum envisaged risk cash loss on all three nightclub ventures as the pressure of authorities got to me. It severely impacted my business and I had to sell a load of critical assets to attempt to restore cashflow.
As I made the business survive and was about to make the change of office down to Cardiff Bay, Gwent Police swooped and illegally arrested me for breach of the peace when I had done nothing. They forced me into a police vehicle. I said ‘where are we going?’ They said we have to charge you at Newport Central. I said ‘Ok, Could we make it quick please as I have a Cubase course to complete at Immtech tonight and can travel straight down to Cardiff after you have processed me’. Instead they stayed in vehicle, stationary and then a section team of Sudanese Psychiatrist Dr Ali and social services etc turned up and I was placed oN Section 3 of Mental Health Act and removed to St Cadoc’s Hospital, Caerleon.
They said that my business and LTD company was a delusion of grandeur. They beat me in my court appeal using this fact as evidence of schizophrenia yet it was totally an illusion of their own. They said that I had made up business cards and was totally round the twist in a fantasy world.
I spent 11 and a half months detained and was left penniless, begging inside the secure wards of St Cadoc’s for tobacco and food. Luckily I met a former nurse who had been almost stabbed to death on streets of Newport by a cocaine addict and she looked after me and eventually we had a relationship that lasted for 16 years until Gwent Police and MHA (Monmouthshire Housing Association) kidnapped her.
I decided that it was unwise trying to rekindle the ashes of my business and just set about recreating it in the virtual world so that it would be less affected by police corruption, jealous mental health and social workers and idiots.
It broke my heart to have my dream job and career so ruined by evil. Life goes on though.