In The Elusive Jerry McDonald post, I go into quite a bit of history of something called Sea Supply, which had been started by OSS (then CIA) operative Paul Helliwell.
In the early 1950s, his main job was to help Chiang Kai-shek to prepare for a future invasion of Communist China. Helliwell created a pair of front companies to supply and finance the surviving forces of Chiang’s Kuomintang Army.
He organized Sea Supply, a CIA proprietary a shipping company in Bangkok with a “sea going bunch of vessels” that furnished weapons and other material to anti-Communist guerrillas in the hills of Burma, Laos, and Thailand. He established Civil Air Transport (CAT), a Taiwan-based airline, later Air America.
Using Sea Supply, Helliwell imported large amounts of arms that were ferried into Burma on CAT airplanes. CAT then used the ‘empty’ planes to fly drugs (from fields of opium poppies that this mercenary army had cultivated) from Burma to Taiwan, Bangkok (Thailand) and Saigon (Vietnam). There the drugs were processed for the benefit of the Chiang Kai-shek’s corrupt government on Taiwan.
When Helliwell was assigned to the Bahamas in 1964 (until 1975) to help launder LSD and marijuana profits, he formed (and controlled) Castle Bank and Trust Company, which also laundered Mafia money. It was initially ‘shelved’ for a few years, waiting…until it started coming into real use in 1968.
Helliwell served the Mafia in a dual capacity as CIA banker and legal counsel. Helliwell’s law firm also represented Louis Chesler and Wallace Groves, both partners in Resorts International, another CIA front group.
That’s actually what he was assigned there to do, set up offshore banks for CIA use, and he set up other banks as well. He established the Mercantile Bank and Trust Company in the Bahamas, and then later the American Bankers Insurance Company based in Galveston, Texas.
Helliwell was an attorney, working out of Miami and he also served as legal counsel to a Panamanian holding company that controlled a Bahamas gambling casino connected with Meyer Lansky.
He also established a Miami office of the Sea Supply Corporation – the primary reason was to create closer ties between the CIA and the Cuban Mafia. This included Santos Trafficante, that brought in Chinese white heroin that the Mafia distributed in the U.S. Santos Trafficante was a Tampa-based crime boss who was among those who lost out on gambling revenues when Castro took power in Cuba.
Richard Helms, the new CIA director, was good buddies with the Mellon family and would often visit Billy Mellon/Hitchcock’s estate where Timothy Leary was presiding over the CIA’s project MKUltra LSD experiments.
When things got too hot, Leary and Mellon/Hitchcok moved to the West Coast, shifting over to empowering the Brotherhood of Eternal Love which Leary and Mellon/Hitchcock helped get going in 1966, after “Farmer” Griggs had visited Leary that summer.
So – now that Leary and Mellon/Hitchcock’s good buddy Richard Helms was heading the CIA, and Paul Helliwell had everything all set up and hunky-dory for them with the offshore banks they would use – lots of world-wide drug-running and money laundering operations then began in earnest.
That’s who Paul Helliwell is.
And gee whillickers, there sat ole Ron Hubbard, the long-term intelligence asset, with his newly formed mini-fleet of ocean going vessels just filled with young and gullible “save-the-world” types, just nice and conveniently available.
Just one year after Helms, if you’ll forgive the pun, takes the helm of the CIA, the Sea Org had been formed 12 August 1967.