Intellectual Property Laws in Britain are as antiquated to the Romans arrival on the shores of England and calling it Britannia.
In the 18th and probably the 19th centuries it was settled by a few rounds of bare knuckle fighting, or in a more serious manner with Pistols or Swords on a cold early morning.
I didn’t even give Intellectual Property Laws a thought when I first went to a Solicitor in Bristol. John Illsley and I had spoken of how I’d contact him if the band became a success, it would be a simple letter from a respected Lawyer telling Illsley it was the real Robert Marshal who was trying to get in touch.
However the Bristol Solicitors took it into their heads to send citations to nearly everyone who had been part of Dire Straits the band, and my letter of introduction to Illsley was put in the bin. Being so many miles away from their office in Bristol,this was all being done without my say so, even though it was my money the sharks had got their teeth into a piece of fresh flesh and were not letting go.
They sent the citations out to the individual band members Mark Knopfler, David Knopfler, John Illsley, Pick Withers, Guy Fletcher, Jack Sonni, I even think Danny Cummings was included. The list of names became almost endless and the pile of Citations was massive, and it was all done without my approval.
The address the Solicitors sent them to, sent them back unopened saying Return to Sender address unknown, they didn’t even know how to contact the people on the list of Citations. And this procedure of sending them out and then having them returned to their office in Bristol, went on and on draining my capital and convincing me I’d met the Key Stone Cops of Solicitors.
To the Bristol Solicitors relieve and to my horror a guy called Denis O’shea from Boscombe in Hampshire, Illsley’s territory, put his hand up and said he would accept the Citations. Who is Denis O’shea and what connection does he have with Dire Straits or any of the band members, none, he is a friend of someone who worked for John Illsley, and that was where the Citations were sent.
The Bristol Solicitors having got shot of their Citations, immediately snapped closed their briefcases with my money, said they’d done their bit as it was getting a bit to heavy for them and retired to the restaurants and bars of Bristol to spend it.
I contacted Denis O’shea who is a dupe in a duplicity set up by John Illsley’s friend, a gentleman who was taken advantage of for being sincere, and trusting someone he thought was a friend. You know how to pick us John so is it fists or Pistols at Dawn, I don”t think you’ve got the bottle even to apologise to Mr O’shea.