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Thursday, January 31, 2013

Damned Lies - Man Uses Vet Tale to Bilk Bikers

 Bryan Harley

Cagers - If you see this guy in your rearview mirror  youd better get the hell out of the way. How many of us out there have either met this guy or seen him at rallies? Turns out, the man who has been passing himself as Robert Harris is really an international criminal called Eugene Paull, according to a story by the Tampa Bay Times. Worse yet, he's been passing himself off as a vet on a mission to raise money for homeless vets but apparently has been pocketing the money himself. Read the story for details.
This is one of the most dedicated old vet motorcyclists around. His unique bike is locked  cocked and fully loaded.
I’ve been bilked. Bamboozled. Hoodwinked. Had the proverbial wool pulled over my eyes. Worst part is, a lot of you out there did too. This joker fooled a lot of us. My eyes almost popped out of my head when I read this story on the Tampa Bay Times website. It’s a tale of deceit, SWAT raids, shotguns and machine guns and underground tunnels. But let’s rewind a bit before we press forward.

A few years back, met this crazy character in Daytona Beach at the Harley-Davidson Ride-In Bike Show. Dude claimed to be a vet, rode the wildest 1985 FXST decked out with rockets, machine guns, bandoliers of bullets, gas masks, and tons of other military-themed paraphernalia. He called it the “Vietnam Vets Tribute Bike” and called himself Sky Soldier. He then spun a convincing tale of how he was embarking on a cross-country trip, “Operation: Dust Off” to raise money for homeless and disabled veterans. He went on to say how he was going to carry American flags with him on the journey to be signed by dignitaries along the way which were ultimately going to be placed at the Vietnam Memorial Wall in D.C. on Memorial Day. Great story, huh? Easy to buy into, a vet and fellow biker helping out vets. Wanting to help the guy out, I wrote a little story about it. (Veteran Tribute Bike Embarks on Vet Fundraiser)

Turns out, if the allegations in the Tampa Bay Times story are true, it was all a lie. This guy is a complete con artist. Apparently, the guy who rode around rallies on his rocket-launching motorcycle shouting “Look at me, look at me” who we knew as Robert Harris, aka “Sky Soldier,” is really an international criminal named Eugene Paull who's been living under a false identity for the last 33 years. Stole a dead person’s name. According to the story, he’s suspected of racking up a small fortune back in the day trafficking drugs in Jamaica. Yeh, mon! He’s even had him a little long-time, live-in Jamaican girlfriend he snuck into the country illegally.

But that’s not the part that really irks me. What really irks me is this guy has been traveling around motorcycle rallies over the past couple of years passing himself off as a patriot when he’s a total fraud. How many of us have seen him with his crazy motorcycle parked at the Weirs or on Main St. Daytona Beach with his sign: “$1 to photograph the bike, $5 to take a picture with it, $10 to take one sitting on it. To help homeless veterans,” it concluded. Get this, though. The report says that in one year, Paull raised more than $100,000, but investigators could only confirm he donated $1,300 to veterans. Guess where the other $98,700 went? I’ll give you a clue.

Paull was recently caught in Miami with explosives and almost $90,000 in cash they found stashed in gas cans with false bottoms. This after authorities confiscated two houses, three vehicles, two campers, a pair of custom motorcycles, a 47-foot yacht and about $20,000 in cash from him the first time they raided his compound. The story’s just unbelievable. You’ve got to check out the well-done piece the Tampa Bay Times did on it. (Hernando Hideout of International Criminal and his Jamaican Girlfriend Come to Light) You’ll be sitting there shaking your head just like I was.

When I read it, I was angry. How dare this guy abuse the big-hearted nature of the biker community for personal gain. Even worse, he did it under the guise of being a patriot who wanted to help out disadvantaged brothers. That’s treasonous, because from what I understand the guy actually served in ‘Nam. If he really did, which knowing his trail of lies I’d question even that, then how could he betray his brothers knowing first-hand the nature of the beast known as Vietnam? About now, I’d like to kick this guy right in his ‘nads. I rescind my story and apologize to readers for helping to propagate his lies. Now I’m trying to help spread the word about what a low-life this guy is in case he dares show his face at a rally again trying to pull the same old tricks.