MST-13: Richard Sherrow’s Strange Story

John Ashton has uncovered a truly bizarre story. (See Cover-up of Convenience, p 269)

“According to American investigative Journalist Don Devereux, Richard Sherrow passed him an A4 sized envelope containing a number of colour photographs mounted on a sheet of paper at a meeting in May 1993 . Some showed a piece of electronic timer, some arms and others items he had seen in Lome, Togo including an MST-13 timer. The photographs were undoubtedly the same as the ones shown to Sherrow during his testimony at the Lockerbie trial.

Picture from Sherrow - Togo 1986

Picture from Sherrow – Togo 1986

“Devereux says that Sherrow told him that while working for the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) when asked to identify the timer in the photograph he was certain that he knew the origin. Rather than implicating the MST-13’s original manufacturer MEBO, Sherrow said a company in Florida made the timer, and made it exclusively for the CIA. Sherrow allegedly told Devereux, that he brought this information to the attention of senior personnel at the ATF he was reprimanded and immediately removed from active duty and taken off the Lockerbie investigation.

“Angry at his treatment, Sherrow sought advice from Arizona Senator John McCain. A McCain aide, Thomas McCanna, met with Sherrow and introduced him to Charles Byers, a ‘special ordnance’ manufacturer had a long running dispute with the ATF and the CIA. According to Byers, Sherrow told him a similar story.

“In 1994 Byers took the photographs given to him by Sherrow to an invitation only trade show for ‘Special Operations’ held at Fort Bragg North Carolina. At the show he showed the photographs to another exhibitor Dan Perreault, the owner of a Florida Electronics Company called Mathews and Associates. Byers claims that he asked Perreault if he could make such an item and again according to Byers, Perreault said that his company ‘did’ make the device. Byers asked him for whom they were made and according Byers, Perreault said, ‘the same people you make your stuff for, the CIA.’

“The timing of these events meant though that if indeed Mathews and Associates had made a timer identical to the MEBO timer, supplied it to the CIA and for whatever reason it was one of these timers that was used on Pan Am 103, it would have to have been made prior to December 1988.  At that time Mathews and Associates was owned by the founder, Herman Mathews, with Perreault taking over in 1993.  Perrault has no recollection of speaking to Byers at the trade show. Copies of the same photographs were sent to him by the authors and he said he did not recognise the timer.  When Herman Mathews was contacted he claimed that he never did any circuit board work or any work for any branch of the US Military. Although he did not wish to comment on Herman Mathews statement, Perreault did say that Mathews and Associates under Herman Mathews did in fact work with circuit boards and did the majority of his work for the Defence Department. Perreault went on to explain that it was possible that circuit boards could have been ordered without either he, or Mathews, knowing anything about the end-user.”

The story is interesting for several reasons. Firstly, as explained by Ashton in his book, it is quite obvious that this information was – almost certainly – neither investigated nor shared with the defense.

Secondly, it seems to imply that Sherrow had serious doubt about the role of the CIA in this affair. After all, he was almost certainly told not to reveal the presence of the CIA person on their investigation team.

Thirdly, one may wonder why Sherrow suspected Mathews Associates? (I am told that this company has now been bought by a UK company.) Did he notice something in Togo?

Fourthly, it seems to strongly imply that Sherrow had seen the timers in Togo. Keep in mind that he had said that, in his opinion, the timers had been planted and manipulated by a third party. If he had not seen the timers in Togo, it is quite certain that he would have said so to Devereux and Byers.

And finally, if Devereux and Byers are telling the truth about their meeting with Sherrow, then he obviously forgot about them when he gave his Police statement S5757A . Because in that statement taken in Boulder Colorado on  01/12/1999 by DC Kenneth Bell, Sherrow said that:

“I have not passed the photographs, copies, or negatives to any private individual. […] I have no idea and can not comment in respect of any private individual or non-federal agencies receiving the photographs.”


Sherrow S5757A

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2 Responses to MST-13: Richard Sherrow’s Strange Story

  1. Craig says:

    Questions & concerns of what to make of certain matters;

    There is a definite connection between Richard Sherrow & Charles M Byers;
    Published: 03/09/1999
    “The city decided to loan the BATF a total containment vessel to haul chemicals away. If the robot weren’t suitable, Byers and a friend Rick Sherrow – a former ATF agent and explosives expert — offered to go into the shed to do any necessary handling.”

    Keep in mind, this is the year 1999, could be suggested Sherrow has considerable concerns with ATF in 1999 and official authorities.

    Waco Investigation, Day 8 – Part 2

    Witnesses include Richard Sherrow –
    2:12:01 – Richard Sherrow – Good to put a face to a name

    At 2:21:00, Sherrow notes a negative ‘mindset’ within ATF and also concerns ‘bad apples’ within same.
    “Some ATF bad guys have tarnished the Badge of the good guys”
    “WE gotta attack the bad guys”
    “The bad guys are winning”

    Charles M Byers note about the discussions and meetings with Senator John McCain Office, late 1990;,d.c2E

    “My involvement with the Pan Am bombing started when an aid to an Arizona US Senator introduced me to a former BATF Explosives expert who was experiencing the same type of Federal Attention that was being inflicted on me. This man had investigated some captured terrorist equipment and had given a unique electronic timer/detonator to the CIA. This Agency apparently had it copied and made it available to their Agents in the field. The BATF Agent was also involved in the Lockerbie Bombing Investigation and he showed me a picture of this timer and illustrated the corner of the circuit board that had been recovered from the ground under the Pan Am Bombing site. It is different than the two other photos of similar circuit boards that I have seen reported as supposedly factual illustrations of the timer that detonated the Pan Am 103 bomb..”

    Noted, the aid to the Arizona US Senator [John McCain] provided the link and the communication between Sherrow and Byers, due to Sherrow previously bringing matters to McCain office.

    So, it could be that Sherrow had considerable concerns with evidence, including timers, at least as far back as 1990 because he communicated these concerns with McCain office.
    Hence, allowing the subsequent meeting with Byers.


  2. Craig says:

    Further comment;

    2:19:45 –

    Q: “Where you serving with the bureau in 1993 or right about then ?”
    Sherrow: No Sir, I was not.

    Q: “You yo yo, what period of time did you serve with the bureau ?
    Sherrow: “I was on leave, eh, administrative leave in the time period of 1993.”


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