When John Brookes began asking questions ten years after his brother was murdered in Central Africa, a number of inconsistencies soon came to light to disprove the police verdict of the killing being a random attack carried out by a local gang. At the time of his death, Norman Brookes and his wife, Pamela, had been living in Samriboi, a mining town on the Copperbelt in Zambia with a small expatriate community, their leisure time spent at the club.
MI6 became involved following new evidence linking the murder with others in Europe, the ensuing enquiry revealing large scale smuggling of precious and semi-precious stones and priceless artefacts with a syndicate operating throughout Europe and the Far East.
Philip Spencer, senior officer with MI6, assigned to the case, was confronted with dis-jointed pieces of first and second-hand observations, but without any real substance or cohesion, requiring him to expand the enquiry to cover periods of time going back more than a decade.
Systematically, the motive for Norman Brookes' murder became clear, although who had actually pulled the trigger continued to elude them right up to the conclusion of the case, more especially with the murder of one of their main suspects, but following several surprising twists and turns, with visits made to Amsterdam, Paris, Singapore and Hong Kong, they were able to break-up what had, for a number of years, been considered by those involved to be an impregnable and foolproof syndicate.