ROBERT STONE was a serial entrepreneur – an enterprising individual, mostly on the wrong side of the law, who spent twenty-five years operating all over the world, before being arrested in Switzerland as a result of an international manhunt led by an Organised Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force.
Over the course of his career, Stone earned and lost several lifetimes’ worth of fortunes, went to prison on three continents, used dozens of aliases, saw men die, and masterminded one of the biggest marijuana smuggling operations in criminal history.
Fuel smuggling in Africa, trading fuel with generals, rebels and businessman, was both his career high and, ultimately, what brought him down.
Guest Post from the Author
“I ran away from home at 15 years old with just $50 in my pocket and ended up building a fortune in the next 25 years through various entrepreneurial ventures, most on the wrong side of the law. But when the law caught up with me, I lost everything. Now I’m approaching my 63rd birthday and looking ahead as to what I might do next.”
“My time in prison changed me. You have all that time to think about what you’ve done and get your priorities in order. My priority is my family.
“I lost my wife very suddenly about 16 years ago. It was incredibly tough. I don’t know how my wee children and I got through it. I had just begun a new international venture in the oil industry but I had to abandon all that to be there for my kids.
“Then nine years ago I was diagnosed with bowel cancer. People tell you that diagnosis like that is a wakeup call. If my children would of lost me there was no one left for them. That was scary.
“After going to prison, then losing my wife and now having cancer I looked up at the skies and shouted, ‘Hey God. I’m AWAKE Already !!!’
“Thankfully I am on remission and I have recently found love again, which I never thought was possible.
“When I wrote “Chasing Black Gold” I found there were elements of my past I had chosen not to remember and I found some painful truths during my research. I tried to be as true to the story as I could and there are bits that still make me cry when I remember them”
“There are so many times my past has come back and screwed up my present. Most people pretend to be Christian but in reality they are anything but.” They never forgive you for a transgression against the law.
“What life has shown me is that past mistakes can come back to hound you and ruin your life. You need solid foundations to build anything and if you don’t have them you will end up with nothing.”
I’m working with a really wonderful social enterprise at the moment helping fight fuel poverty- a bit ironic I guess considering all the fuel I misappropriated during my lifetime.
It’s amazing that in Britain thousands of people die each year from cold related diseases. That people have to make decisions between eating or heating.
I’m going to write a nonfiction book about my career in the early commercial oil field diving industry. So many of those pioneer divers are dead either from diving accidents or old age. We did some very exciting things back in the 70’s and 80’s without which many of the worlds oil fields would not have been developed as quickly as they were.
Norway actually created a fund to reward the divers for diving back then in the Norwegian sector. Almost 30 divers died in the few short years between 73-79 in the North Sea.
I spent over 2000 days in saturation tanks all over the world. The North Sea, Gulf of Mexico, Brazil, Canadian Artic, Thailand. Mainly doing hyperbaric welding. Welding pipelines on the ocean floor in a dry environment.
I’m also working on a TV documentary series called Project Josephine. See www.projectjosephine.com It is going to be a real tribute to those brave men and women who flew bombers and fighters along The Takoradi Route during World War Two.
It is best to always see the bright side of life. To always remember no matter how bad it is , it could always be worse. Keep knocking on doors. You never know what may be behind the ones that open.
Author Robert Stone first came to Aberdeen Scotland in 1973 as a pioneer saturation diver in the early dangerous days of the North Sea. Retiring from diving in the mid 80’s he became a serial entrepreneur –mostly on the wrong side of the law. He spent the next decade operating businesses all over the world from his Aberdeenshire home.
Stone earned and lost several fortunes, went to prison on three continents, used dozens of aliases, and masterminded one of the biggest marijuana smuggling operations in criminal history. Fuel smuggling in Africa, was only one of his many exploits.
His Scottish wife and young children knew nothing of the dark side of his life until the day they were all arrested in Switzerland as a result of an international manhunt led by an Organised Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force.
Twitter – https://twitter.com/rstonecbg
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