A simple means of checking if someone is still alive is by looking at their banking, telephony and online activities
There are several questions answered in this thread, and here is what Mark has to say:
This is a really complex area of our current investigation that the authorities paid little attention to. It was, I suspect far easier for them to construct a case around me than to pursue a lengthy and expensive probe into my father’s clandestine activities. The police are supposed to pursue all “reasonable” avenues of inquiry, but in practice this doesn’t – and in all fairness can’t – happen. The police must decide which areas to prioritise, but this judgement is coloured by their perception of the case and inherent biases against the suspect. With time restraints, limited resources, and the hunger to build a case for conviction, the police tend to focus upon the suspect already in hand rather than pursuing avenues of inquiry that point away from him or may undermine their own case. Readers of this forum will know that my case is far from unique in this respect.
The superficial approach is to look at Samuel Alexander qua “Samuel Alexander”, which is what the police did. But this isn’t much use when he also went by a number of other names whose activities were strictly separated from his main identity. The situation becomes more complex when you realize that dad used separate ‘burner’ phones, separate accounts, and that no two identities were registered to the same postal address, or even the same GP. He’s been doing this successfully for 20 years, so had developed a very sophisticated system. As far as I can tell, dad took advantage of county borders to pursue his interests through multiple regional administrations simultaneously.
“He was perfectly capable of dropping off the radar when he wanted” JP
“There was no point in pursuing him if he didn’t want to be pursued” SSP
“A member of the Serious Case Review Panel observed ‘he seemed not to exist”
“Even if he was in, he wouldn’t necessarily answer the door or see anyone”SSP
“If he wanted to remain private and uncommunicative he would do just that” MP
One prosecution witness recounted an occasion when dad “was chased into the Close by another vehicle” JP
After my trial, dad’s father-in-law told our team that “Sami could easily accumulate enemies” LE
When someone has gone out of their way to cover their tracks as elaborately as my dad, trying to uncover them is fiendishly difficult. Just trying to access data from companies, banks, and mobile phone operators after someone has passed away is hard enough. We’ve contacted places like Tesco for example, to find out information about when and where dad last used loyalty cards under his ‘Samuel Alexander’ alias when, as he often did, he paid in cash rather than by card. Many have refused to disclose anything to us on the basis that the Data Protection Act only applies to ‘living individuals’. We’ve also approached bodies like HMRC and the UK Cards Association for details about investigations conducted into my father’s affairs, and whether they have evidence as to known associates, linked accounts, and so on. We haven’t had any luck there yet either, for the same reason, so we will need to seek a court order to compel them to release this vital data to us.
Legally speaking then, we can only get at his other aliases through his core alias, and only if the connection has been made. Simply approaching a company for information about x registered at y address when neither x or y are officially linked to you in any way is an impossibility. We’re essentially trying to do what the police should have done 7 years ago but without their powers, and with ever-diminishing guarantees that records will have survived. When we made enquiries with BT and EE we discovered that cell site data is deleted after 12 months and bills after 2 years – “these records are not copied as archived tapes, nor stored on any other media. Crucial evidence has thus already been lost and could still be trickling away.
What I’d like to do then is publicise dad’s known aliases for the first time, here, in the hope that this might turn up new evidence quicker than we are able to on our own. If nothing else, it will give you a clearer sense of what we’re up against. ‘Samuel Alexander’ was a name first adopted by my father in 2004, though I can find no record of a deed poll certificate. It looks like he gradually transferred assets from his birth name to ‘Samuel Alexander’ over the next 4 years or so. Dad was originally christened ‘Sami Fahmi Kalyoubi’ and many of his aliases were simply variations of this. As far as I know, with one exception, he always used the first name Sam, Sami, Samuel, or Simon in real life (though he was more inventive online). The full list of known surnames is:
Alexander, El-Kalyoubi, Kaloubi, Yacoub, Jacob, Wahba, Boshra, Demetrius, Fernandez.
‘Fernandez’ being the exception in which he used the forename ‘Carlos’ instead of one beginning with ‘S’.
Dad usually got me to do most of the legwork when it came to withdrawals under his core ‘Alexander’ alias. As his appointed power of attorney holder we had a longstanding arrangement whereby I would withdraw regular and set amounts on his behalf: £240 from ‘Coventry Building Society’ and £250 from ‘Nationwide’. I made eleven such withdrawals between September and the last time I saw him on 15th October 2009, which I was able to deliver to him directly, totally £2680 in cash.
Dad didn’t directly use these 2 accounts in that period, but as already discussed, I believe he had access to other accounts under his other aliases which he may well have used in that time because he managed these accounts himself without my help. Given that these ghost accounts weren’t registered to our family home it’s not surprising that amongst all the mail we only found one unopened letter chasing up debts owed under his ‘Yacoub’ alias. This was from 1st Credit Ltd; who have refused to disclose any further details. As might be clear by now, dad kept a ready supply of paper money which he would draw on when going off-grid.
The simple answer here is that the last time dad signed off the internet on the family home PC was 22:31 on 4th September 2009. The prosecution inevitable seized on this fact to press home their theory that he must have died the next day. There is a perfectly innocent explanation for this which is far more mundane and altogether less convenient for the prosecution. This was a shared PC in my office at home, and I’d been steadily packing all my things for London. I ran a web design business at the time, so an internet connection was absolutely essential to my work. I was also about to embark on my final year of law at university. Dad insisted I take the equipment I needed with me so I could get set up as quickly as possible at the new pad, so I packed the wireless hub and Ethernet cable with everything else.
The internet cut off not because dad died, but because I was moving out. Any ‘changes’ the prosecution may have observed on 5th September were caused not by a murder taking place, but by the inevitable disturbances and confusion stirred up by someone moving home. They have mistaken, or rather re-interpreted for their own purposes, the symptoms of a natural event for those of an unnatural one. At any rate, as you’ve probably already concluded, our home hard-line and PC weren’t the only ways dad could access the internet
Dad wasn’t using his main mobile in the period because he left it in the car before I drove to London on 5th September. Of course, having access to more than one mobile, he would have made use of those others. As one former neighbour noted, “Sami had a number of numbers that he changed frequently”MP. Indeed, between 2007 and 2009 he changed his landline number at least 3 times.
Dad and I had been shopping together that morning and only got back about 13:15. Within the next 2 hours, I’d packed the first round of things and was on my way to collect the keys for the new flat – but dad had left his main phone in the glove compartment. The battery went flat on 7th September. I brought it back with me on my next visit home and remember plugging it in to recharge, but I’ve no idea what happened to it after that and dad made no mention of it. The police found it at the house during their search but they also discovered a number of empty phone boxes.
I think the main point to take away from all this is that we can’t treat dad’s case like a conventional missing person’s enquiry, which is where the police went wrong. We can’t expect to follow the normal evidential trails, nor can we assume that all enquiries are exhausted simply by examining dad’s activities qua ‘Samuel Alexander.’ There are many more variables to play with here, so it’s important not to jump to conclusions prematurely. I’m confident that the evidence is out there, we just need to find it. Getting our hands on a court order will be an important first step in the road ahead