Annie Machon

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Annie Machon presenting at 30C3 in Hamburg, December 2013

Annie Machon (born 1968) is a former MI5 intelligence officer who left the Service at the same time as David Shayler, her partner at the time, to help him blow the whistle about alleged criminality within the intelligence agencies. By doing this, they had to give up their careers, go on the run across Europe (August 1997), live in hiding for a year, and then spend the next two years in exile in Paris. They, and many of their friends, family, supporters and journalists, claim to have been intimidated, and some of them were arrested and put on trial. A death threat was announced against her on a Middle Eastern radio station.

In 2005, Machon published her first book, Spies, Lies and Whistleblowers: MI5, MI6 and the Shayler Affair in which she offers criticism of MI5 and the Secret Intelligence Service based on her observations of the two whilst in the employment of MI5.

Early life[edit]

Machon read Classics at Cambridge University and after her graduation began a career in publishing.


In 1991 she was recruited by MI5 where she was posted to their counter-subversion department, officially known as 'F2'. It was there she met Shayler. She then spent two years working in 'T' Branch, investigating Irish terrorism, before being reposted to the international counter-terrorist division, known as 'G Branch'. In 1996 she and Shayler resigned to blow the whistle on a series of alleged crimes committed by the spies, none of which were subsequently followed up by the Crown Prosecution Service. These include:

After MI5[edit]

Annie Machon at 30C3 in Hamburg in December 2013

Drawing on her varied experiences, she is now an author and journalist,[1][2]

In 2006, Machon ended her relationship with Shayler due to his alleged use of hallucinogenics and his claims that he is the Messiah. In 2008 she worked for Make Wars History.[citation needed] Machon is featured in Last Man Out, a 90-minute documentary movie by Jonathan Kerr-Smith about William Rodriguez.[3]

Currently Annie Machon is serving as European Director of LEAP and has announced[4] the starting of a new Whistleblower protection organisation called 'Courage' at the 30C3 conference in Hamburg on 29 December 2013.


  1. ^ Machon, Annie (3 August 2005). ""MI5 must back use of phone-taps" – 3 Aug 2005". London: The Guardian article. Retrieved 1 January 2012. 
  2. ^ MacHon, Annie (29 August 2010). "Sunday Telegraph article: "My so-called life as a spy – 29 Aug 2010". The Daily Telegraph. UK. Retrieved 1 January 2012. 
  3. ^ "". Retrieved 1 January 2012. 
  4. ^

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