This individual is notorious for his connections to the Security Services and for the recruitment of mercenaries in the seventies. Banks had been dishonourably discharged fron the Army, had convictions for blackmail and been a paid informer for various agencies. He has been described as an "Agent Provocateur" and has had people jailed on his say-so, but everything has not been very rosy with his informing activities. His involvement with mercenaries began in the mid seventies with fighting that was going on in Rhodesia, as it was then known. I do know one former paratrooper who was approached to volunteer for this African campaign but turned it down. The whole recruiting exercise fell apart.
Banks returned with the recruiting of mercenaries to fight in Angola. This is actually what happened, despite the ridiculous claims of one man. It was spelled out by Dave Tomkins & Chris Dempster in their book "Firepower" about their role in the fighting in Angola. It was also reiterated to me in an email from Dave Tomkins himself. British mercenaries were in Angola; Costas Georgiou(Callan) Nick Hall & i think, Mick Wainhouse. After a spectacularly lucky attack on the MPLA forces, more mercenaries were requested. NICK HALL came back to Britain and asked JOHN BANKS to do the recruiting. Georgiou DID NOT do any recruiting. He was out in Angola!!!
Banks then surfaced in a trial at the Old Bailey involving arms for the IRA in which three men received lengthy prison sentences. It was claimed that Banks persuaded the accused to buy guns from him, making the whole scenario, a set-up. Back in the seventies, juries simply would never believe that kind of behaviour went on. Banks then found himself in jail for blackmail, but absconded from an open prison, being a wanted man for eight months. Yet when he was recaptured, the authorities gave him an astonishingly light punishment.
Banks popped up in more criminal cases including drugs, murder plots, military plots, intimidation of witnesses, and yet he was still highly regarded by Police & Security Services, and most disturbingly, he had no conscience at all when it come to setting up and betraying his friends. It is alleged that Banks has been paid a great deal of money for his informing activities. There is still a great deal more information in the public domain about Banks, which is worth people researching, and shows the depths of criminality that informants can sink to.