Below is an account of recent activities. All details are true and correct, however, several parties who can bear witness to these events are reluctant to come forward due to fear for personal and property safety.
I am a very private person and do not like to air my personal business in public, or involve others in my personal matters. However, owing to an extremely broken system which appears to favor only the corrupt, males, I have little other avenue left to explore apart from to name and shame.
I have no regard for whether or not you choose to believe the idle gossip which has been flung around town about me by third parties, nor do I have any regard for the opinions of any but a select few who know me and whom I trust and respect and who have seen the truth first hand.
My name is Lyndsey. I came to Vanuatu in 2008 to complete my post-graduate studies and it was in January 2008 that I met my now husband, Duncan Akers. A charming man with whom I spent many happy times with, a friendship developed, I taught him to dive, we traveled, generally enjoyed each other’s company.
As time went on we became closer and a relationship formed and we finally moved in together on or about July 2008 and Duncan proposed in October 2008.
Owing to a number of external factors our planned wedding was postponed on a number of occasions, however, we eventually married in Fiji in July 2011 amid a small party of close relatives and friends. To all on the outside it appeared we were the picture of happiness, and in many respects, we were. However, there was internal turmoil.
Duncan has a well-documented history of domestic violence in Australia, and even prior to our wedding I had experienced this.
Why go ahead and marry him you may ask? Well, love is blind and often we find ourselves making excuses for such behaviors. ‘It is an isolated incident’, ‘it’s only because he is stressed’, it must have been my fault’…
Then there is the thought that, well, when it’s good it can be very good, so I will just let it go. We started our company BuildSmart Vanuatu in 2012. I say we, but Duncan did very little apart from sign his name on the end of some forms.
Between July and approximately October, Duncan worked under the company banner. Following the wrap up of his present project, the only one he had to date brought to completion as he had already been fired from every other job held since coming to Vanuatu, he contracted a mystery illness which left him out of gainful employment for almost 2 years, during which time I was the sole breadwinner.
The violence through this time escalated dramatically.
In summary, over the years Duncan has punched me, dragged me by the hair through our house, broken my tooth, smashed my head into floor tiles, strangled me on numerous occasions, smashed two of my laptops over the kitchen bench causing irretrievable loss of valuable data, smashed my phones, thrown glass directly at me, thrown full plates of food at the walls, countless of my personal items thrown into the lagoon, 4 wedding rings (his), 1 lost, 1 thrown into the lagoon in a rage, one smashed with a besser block, finally one more thrown in the lagoon again. He has relentlessly harassed my family via phone and email. The list goes on, but we could be here forever detailing every event.
So why stay you ask again? We separated for a short period not long after our wedding after a particularly violent incident.
I had to ask a neighbor to take him off the property to a property belonging to a friend as he was too intoxicated to drive. In the following days, we communicated via text where he said on numerous occasions he had nothing to live for and was going to kill himself.
I went to see him and believed this time, I actually believed he would do it. I took him back home but insisted he gets professional help. It was at this point he was prescribed anti-psychotic medication.
Duncan has a long history of depression and psychosis. When he gets into a rage he cannot control himself.
Generally, once calm he claims he does not remember what has happened. I believed this for some time, however, when he came clean and told friends after yet another incident, I find this hard to believe. He asked a friend if she could forgive him for what he had done. She promptly told him ‘I’m not the person you should be asking’! He never asked me, just said, there is no point!
For a time he was taking medication and then decided to just stop. Mood swings quickly onset. I was walking on eggshells as often if I as much as commented that I didn’t like a certain dish cooked or I simply wasn’t hungry at dinner time he could snap.
We went to see a counselor in a joint session where much of this was admitted to. However, now he has backtracked and denied everything.
In another session with the counselor which I attended alone, she admitted, ‘he is very convincing’. This is one of the scariest aspects of this man, he convinces himself and starts to believe his own versions of events.
He is also a very articulate person, articulate and as such, can convince others who choose to listen. Physical violence aside, it is the emotional aspect that is so much worse.
Over time, he wore me down, made me believe everything was my fault and that I somehow deserved this treatment. I became rather anti-social because if I said the wrong thing or spoke to the wrong person, there would be consequences behind closed doors once we got home. Not that there was an issue with him abusing me on the balcony in clear earshot of neighbors or in front of friends.
The final straw hit when I got home from a lengthy illness, almost 2 months in the hospital, which almost cost me my life. I was still very weak and recovery from this alone has taken some time.
Two (2) days after I returned from the hospital, I said something to Duncan and he launched at me, strangling me, causing me to black out and smash my head open on the floor tiles. I woke up covered in blood.
Pro Medical was called and in attendance, he admitted his actions. He later denied this and said, ‘I only said that because you told me that’s what happened’. How pathetic!
He took me to the central hospital as we could not get hold of the after-hours private doctor and I required 7 stitches above my right eye. I proceeded to spend the next 10 days or so not leaving the house due to the bruising and not wanting the have to lie to people again about what had occurred.
I was required to return to Australia for follow up late February, still quite weak. Duncan decided to travel to Santo with friends as he didn’t want to miss out on a celebration for his birthday.
I had to return to Australia unaccompanied. Upon my return it was final, we were to separate, and I was moving out. I arranged to move back to our previous unit and the owners had agreed to this, however it was not available for some time.
In spite of all that had transpired, I agreed for the sake of sparing both of us more hardship, especially as we still operated the business together, we would keep things amicable. In fact, even though the situation was as it was we continued to sleep in the same bedroom.
Once my unit was ready, I moved out taking just one bag with me. I continued to return to the house every day, run errands including his personal errands etc. In late March I had to return home (to Ireland), my Grandad was gravely ill and indeed passed away while I was there.
I was due to return after ten days, however, ended up back in the hospital myself causing me to miss my flight and rescheduled for the following week. Duncan was fully aware and assisted with making the necessary changes.
It was during this time he held a bogus shareholders meeting of which I was never informed and removed me as Director of our company. Upon my return, I went to the house/office to find I had been locked out.
My possessions had been removed from my unit and put in a different one. Much personal property which I had taken when I left was missing and the rest of my belongings were still locked in the house.
He also wiped my computer and hard drives of all information, cut me off from all finances etc. It was at this point I sought legal advice which was initially forthcoming, but as there were no funds to pay, my lawyer had to step down.
Duncan proceeded to convince the owners of the property to ask me to leave forcing yet another move, without my presence, more property broken or stolen or both and still refused access to the house to obtain an inventory of assets etc as requested by the Court, refused me access to my dog Cleo and proceeded with a three month long calculated trail of planned actions from cancelling my medical insurance, to malicious threats against me and my family, malicious lies spread all around town, leaving me virtually unemployable as reputation stands for everything, penniless and on the verge of a nervous breakdown.
Eventually, in August I left Vanuatu following our last interaction where he assured me he would ‘finish the job’ next time he saw me. I fled to friends overseas. I had to return briefly in September to try and obtain copies of important documents.
During this time I stayed with friends who maintained my security at all times. I was finally advised that my divorce hearing date had been set and returned in February purely for this reason.
In the interim period, a friend whom I had left my vehicle with was threatened by a group of thugs and Duncan and she was forced to ‘hand it over’.
Since my return I have been denied access to my vehicle, threatened with bogus criminal charges, still denied access to any finances, more malicious lies spread, it just goes on! The system remains fatally flawed where men such as this can continue to get away with fraudulent and malicious actions.
Vanuatu has been my home for almost ten years. I want to return but on medical grounds and for personal safety I cannot. I have moved on and am ready to walk away.
It may mean that he has won. I am wife number 4 by the way that he has done this to. He has also walked away from 4 children and paid no child support or assisted in any way with their upbringing.
If nothing further comes from this, at least my side of the story is out there.
This man is dangerous, a fraud and a cheat. Deal with him at your own peril. I only wish you luck.
I am not interested in going after him for his crimes. It was my own fault that I didn’t report him to the police at the times but as I mentioned, I kept making excuses for him and he had complete control of me physically and mentally. There is little point in pursuing him when I can better spend my time moving on, and being happy.
I just wonder, as my current lawyer, from the PSO, is no longer responding to my emails or calls, will anything progress in terms of divorce proceedings and settlement?
Duncan will not accept the jurisdiction of Vanuatu Courts and has denied service twice. He now can apparently not be found to reserve documents and due to lack of activity on the file the case has been dismissed awaiting said reservice.
There is little doubt his lawyer, Mark Fleming has had a great deal to do with this. He has played the system perfectly. He has also been involved with blatant intimidation of the PSO’s office for representing me.
There was a second fake shareholders meeting held the end of February detailing company finances, also orchestrated by Mark Fleming and our then Accountant. I received no information about this but received a copy of the minutes of the meeting I supposedly attended three weeks before the meeting supposedly took place. I have informed the VFSC about this but nothing has been done and when the minutes were lodged, they were accepted!
Instead, Duncan is trying to hide behind the fact he is Australian and use the Australian system as he does not have to accept any blame and can more easily ensure I receive nothing from our jointly held finances and assets which I have worked very hard for over the years.
Again, wife number 4 he has done this to. This also I have given up hope on as between him and his crooked lawyer, they have been very busy hiding assets.
How can he continue to call Vanuatu home, yet flaunt the legal system for his own benefit?
He also hides behind the excuse that he is uneducated when it suits him. Comes back to the whole manipulative personality thing. So now really, I think the only way forward is to name and shame. Perhaps that will bring some justice, some peace of mind. I don’t know.
As for now, I am regaining my health but settled into a new life. I have taken a restraining order out against him. This took some time as he has been shirking the law and hiding from service.
His lawyer, Mark Fleming has also been acting illegally by refusing service at the address listed on all Court documents filed in Australia. Duncan has been busy hiding assets and illegally selling assets, spending mutual finances on expensive holidays and new partners, making further threats and false statements about myself, threatening family and friends and treating our staff extremely poorly.
I am a firm supporter of the anti-violence campaign and the 16 days of activism campaign is pivotal to raise awareness about the issues that are occurring every single day to millions of people throughout the world.
If nothing more comes from my story, hopefully, it can give at least one person the strength to stand up and say NO!! This past year, there have been many deaths reported, who knows how many unreported due to domestic violence. How many more need to die before you stand up and say NO! Enough is enough.