The Heritage Front
A report to the Solicitor General of Canada
December 9th, 1995
VI. THE FUNDING OF THE SOURCE IN THE HERITAGE FRONT
In this section, we examine CSIS funding of its Source in the Heritage Front.
We do so using Human Source Branch files, both from Headquarters and Toronto
Region, interviews with Human source officials and the source handler, and
an interview with the Source.
6.1 CSIS Payments to the Source
According to Service policy, Human sources "... shall not normally
be offered any form of inducement or compensation, other than the assurance
of confidentiality and payment in money or payment in kind, in exchange
for providing operational assistance to the Service."
6.1.1 Payments for Operational Assistance
CSIS pays sources for "operational assistance" usually
information. It provides these payments according to an annual budget.
The Service reimburses sources for monies spent while assisting the Service.
The Service accounts for some of the expenses as part of the monthly payments
to the source. Trips by the sources, however, are accounted for separately.
This is done, in part, because the Service provides travel advances.
The Service noted that, on average, expenses were $260 per month over the
seven years, an amount which was, in their view, reasonable.
The Service compensated the Source from time-to-time for special trips.
Usually, the Investigator would estimate the likely cost of the trip before
the fact, and provide the Source with a cash advance. The Source, on completing
the trip, would provide the handler with receipts, and the handler would
then calculate the balance from the advance. All expenditures relating to
trips, throughout the period, are rigorously accounted for by receipts.
The handler also compensated the Source for daily expenses. He usually
claimed for regular expenses once a month .
These expenditures were, primarily, for meals, telephone use, and transportation.
Until January 1990, the "Source Financial Statements" would
list items and the corresponding receipts obtained from the Source. Beginning
in February 1990, the handler estimated expenses, and would periodically
ask the Source for receipts.
According to the CSIS Operational Manual, to obtain authorization, the handler
has to fill in the "Source Financial Statement", and the
Human Source office has to review the statement and ensure that "receipts
are attached or an explanation is given when receipts are not obtained".
According to the records we examined, the Source frequently divided up expenses
with other Heritage Front members, and he was reimbursed accordingly by
CSIS. For example, CSIS paid the source only $67 dollars on two Radisson
Hotel invoices totalling $202 dollars. The
invoices had a hand notation that the bill had been split three ways. Such
invoices, and hand notations, were common.
From time to time the Source would agree to pay dues and make contributions
to the Heritage Front. For example, one telex shows that the Source listed
people making donations, and put himself down for $40. Another telex shows
that the Source obtained a "Nationalist Party citizenship card".
Recipients "were to pay $50 on receipt of their card".
All group members were asked to "donate some personal money"
to defray the printing costs of the Heritage Front publication "Up
Front". There is no evidence that the Source ever contributed to
Droege's legal fees.
According to the Source, as a Member of the executive, he was generally
exempt from paying dues and paying for the magazine subscription. Many of
the contributions took the form of paying for group meals, transportation
or accommodation. He noted that he had made an initial contribution of $70
to $100 dollars to the Heritage Front. On one occasion, he had had to come
up with several hundred dollars for hall rental, of which all but $50 was
reimbursed. He also said that he had pledged $75 to $100 to help defray
the cost of the Metzger's trip, though this may have been written off against
a lunch for Droege's lawyers. He paid 25% (probably $200 - $300) of the
publication costs for the first issue of the Heritage Front magazine, "Up
Front". He provided $90 - $100 towards the Front hotline, but was
reimbursed by Droege and, on a special occasion, he donated some money because
Droege wanted the hotline to continue. Generally, according to the Source,
he made no direct contributions, although he would buy T-shirts and the
like from time to time.
The Source said that he always claimed for what he spent, and he does not
think that CSIS provided funds for the creation or maintenance of the Heritage
Front through any other means. He said that
he was "cheap", and Front members knew "he would
not part with a penny".
The Source said that he sometimes paid lunch expenses during Court hearings.
Droege would ask him to pay the bill and would then reimburse him. In 1993,
there were five or six times when the bill might have been $50 for sandwiches.
The Source added that Droege reimbursed him dollar-for-dollar about 50%
of the time.
The handler said that Droege and the Heritage Front collected money in a
haphazard manner. He thought dues were between $25 and $50. The Source,
like other leaders, would frequently duck paying dues. According to the
handler, the Source contributed no more than $1,000 over five years in donations
to the operations of the Heritage Front. This takes into account postage,
letterhead paper, general office supplies, donations to the Heritage Front
legal fund, and $25 here and there. The Source said that he may also have
made a $25 contribution to the costs of Ken Barker's hotline.
The handler discussed the treatment of dues and contributions as expenses.
He noted that he was not required to itemize and account for specific expenses,
but that he himself vetted expenses from time to time . He also noted that
the Source was supposed to tell him about any contributions he made to the
HF, and that any large amounts were to be approved first by Headquarters.
In our review of the expenses files, we found no reference to any contributions
or donations. In our review of the source administrative files, we found
no applications to Headquarters for donations or contributions.
6.3 Loss-of-Employment Compensation
CSIS officers stressed to the Source that the payments were temporary, and
actively encouraged him to look for other work. At one point, he was asked
for "a monthly report detailing [his] efforts to find a job".
6.4 The Source's Financial Situation
Evidence from many sources indicates that the Source did not spend lavishly.
A review of his 1989 and 1990 "meals" expense receipts
indicates that he only infrequently (i.e. perhaps four or five times a year)
"treated" anyone. Many of the available bills indicate
that he paid (and was reimbursed for) only 1/4 or 1/3 of the bill. Most
of the meal bills were for $50 or less. CSIS did not keep itemized receipts
Nor was he generous with CSIS money. He apparently gave few gifts that CSIS
was specifically billed for; total miscellaneous expenditures for seven
years are less than $260.
According to the handler, the Source did not have much to spend. He earned
between $35,000 and $40,000 per year from his employment, including car
allowances and benefits. He supplemented this with odd investigation jobs.
Considering the time spent in his employment and his work for CSIS, however,
the handler indicated that he did not have much time for odd jobs. He did
some skip tracing, but not very much or for very long: no more than $5,000
The handler said that the Source was thrifty, as were other Heritage Front
members. Also, he was in some financial difficulty. He was always in debt
because he used his credit card for expenses and maintained high debit balances.
Also, his car (a 1987 or earlier year Ford) was always breaking down. He
owed money from a failed business as well. His common law wife was not working,
and he had to support the family. According to the handler, the Source spent
his money on himself not on the movement.
The Source said that he had very little money. He was known within the Front
as not wanting to part with a penny, and he certainly did not have enough
money to finance or underwrite Front activities.
In the CSIS Human Source files, we did not find any discussion of lavish
spending by the source. The Service, of course, did not know precisely what
the Source was spending his income on.
6.5 CSIS Assistance To The Heritage Front
In our review of financial and source administrative files, we found no
indication of any intention to financially support the creation, development,
or continuation of the Heritage Front, or any other groups. In no files
predating August 1994 did we come across any discussion of the potential
of Service payments to assist the Heritage Front. To the best of our knowledge,
it was never a subject of Service discussion.
According to the financial files, the Source did pay for vehicle rentals,
shared accommodation and the like. These costs were then shared with other
Heritage Front members. In the case of meals, the Source infrequently picked
up the bill. More frequently, receipts
indicate that the source paid for a portion of the bill, and that the Service
reimbursed the Source for this portion only. According to CSIS files, "many
of the expenses were paid on a cost-sharing basis (one would pay one time
and someone else the next)".
CSIS noted that the majority of the transportation and meals costs were
paid to the Source as business expenses incurred on their behalf and in
no way supported the Heritage Front.
We asked Al Overfield and Wolfgang Droege if anyone made significant direct
contributions. They indicated that everyone would share in costs, and that
this meant at times giving as much as a few hundred dollars at a time, but
that, in the words of Wolfgang Droege, there were "no large lump
sum payments". Al Overfield said that the Heritage Front was perpetually
6.5.1 Other CSIS Funding of the Heritage Fund
We found no other indication of any funds being provided to the Heritage
Front by CSIS.
6.5.2 Funding of American White Supremacists
When the Metzgers were deported, they were unable to take their flight from
Toronto, and had to have a ticket reissued. This resulted in an additional
expense. The Source paid his share of the additional expense, and the handler
is not certain whether he was reimbursed by Droege.
We found no other indications of funds provided to white supremacists.
According to the files, Sean Maguire, another American white supremacist,
came to Canada with $25,000 to deposit in banks. He deposited most of the
money in various banks, and left the remainder at Grant Bristow's home.
The Source told us that Bristow later returned an unspecified amount to
We asked Wolfgang Droege about possible funding. He indicated that he had
no direct knowledge of any such funding. He noted that Maguire had called
him up to complain that Bristow had not returned $40,000 he had left with
Bristow as an investment. He said that Bristow subsequently returned the
We asked Metropolitan Toronto Police Officers about the funding of foreign
white supremacists. They stated that they saw no money or information going
to or coming from south of the border; people in the movement were supported
by UIC, welfare, donations, subscriptions, and some jobs.
6.6 Value of Information and Assistance
Over a seven year period, the Source was paid less than $80,000 for actually
assisting the Service.
The evaluation of the worth of a Source is always subjective. However, the
Source provided a great deal of information.
According to a CSIS assessment:
"Between the Years 1989 and 1994, Human source coverage has
provided the Service with a high volume of quality information concerning
white supremacist activities in Canada, the United States and, to some extent,
Europe. This coverage enabled the Service to monitor developing trends within
the violent racist movement as well as to warn of potential public confrontations
involving violence... "
CSIS information primarily from [the Source] led to the arrest and deportation
of a number of leading international white supremacists:
CSIS also provided information to the police which led to the arrest of
Ken Barker, a Heritage Front member, who was charged with armed robbery.
- Steve HAMMOND (01/91)
- Sean MAGUIRE (09/91)
- Tom METZGER (06/92)
- John METZGER (06/92)
- David IRVING (11/92)
- Dennis MAHON (93/01)
Since 1989, CSIS has produced over 80 threat assessments on the activities
of white supremacists. We have provided
advance information to police and government officials on the potential
for violence at demonstrations and other events.
In addition, the Service has produced 10 detailed CSIS Reports on the status
of the white supremacist and organized racist community in Canada."
The Source also provided police with information that may have saved individuals
from harm. For example, the handler told police about a Skinhead plot to
disrupt an anti-racist march by hurling bottles and rocks from downtown
Toronto rooftops. Police subsequently manned the rooftops. He frequently
reported on activities involving guns and other weapons, providing information
which was passed to the Metropolitan Toronto Police Force.
The handler was asked about the value of the operation. He indicated that
he saw it as having severely damaged the right wing in Canada and the USA
and "they know it". He stated that the organization is
turning in on itself. He added that if an organization like The Order in
the United States had started up in Canada, CSIS would have been in a position
to know about it.
We do not know for sure that the Source was the direct cause of the arrest
of any HF members. According to the Metropolitan Toronto Police, however,
in 1993 they and the Ottawa Police arrested about 15 members of the HF and
the Church of the Creator (COTC) for various offenses.
There is no indication that CSIS consciously provided funding for the creation,
development or nurturing of the Heritage Front. Indeed, CSIS Human Source
files suggest that CSIS officers never discussed the impact of funding on
the growth of the Heritage Front.
There is no way of determining objectively if the Source was overpaid. However,
only about $79,000 was paid for information, the rest being for expenses,
and loss-of-employment compensation.
The Source was paid at the rate of $30,000 annually for fifteen months,
in compensation for losing his job. This payment was based on an estimated
employment income of $41,000.
Service accounts suggest that expense monies from the Service were by and
large not spent on other Heritage Front members; though some money was most
certainly spent for shared vehicle expenses and the like. The CSIS financial
records indicate that CSIS never paid for airline tickets for other Heritage
We do not know, with certainty, what the Source decided to do with the money
he obtained from CSIS. He and his handler indicate that he was a penny pincher,
and had substantial bills to pay.
The Source said that he made minor contributions and donations to the Heritage
Front. Service financial records, however, contain no entries for donations
1 In a few cases, the Source would make no claims for a month.
2 "Source Financial Statement", April, 1989.
3 SIRC interview of Source
4 SIRC interview of Source
5 SIRC interview of Source
6 SIRC interview of Source
7 SIRC interview of Handler
8 SIRC interview of Handler
9 SIRC interview of Investigator
10 SIRC interview of Source
11 We have detailed expenditures and receipts for 1989 and 1990.
12 Correspondence from CSIS, November 18, 1994.
13 SIRC interview of Handler .
14 SIRC interview of Source.
15 SIRC interview of the Metropolitan Toronto Police Force.
16 According to the Service, "while it is not possible to quickly
attribute the contents of specific assessments to [the Source], the intelligence
from this individual is seen as a significant contributor". Staff
estimates that about half derive from, or are likely to derive from, the
17 "Value added", undated.
18 SIRC interview of Handler
19 SIRC interview of the Metropolitan Toronto Police Force.
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