James Easton

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Person.png James EastonRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
(spook, pilot)
No image available (photo).jpg
Born11 Feb 1908
Died19 Oct 1990 (Age 82)
Alma materRoyal Air Force College Cranwell
An RAF pilot who became deputy director general of MI6

James Alfred Easton was a British aviator and spook.


Easton graduated from Royal Air Force College Cranwell, where he had represented the College at Soccer and attained the rank of Flt Cdt Cpl, he joined No 101 Squadron flying DH9A's. The squadron soon re-equipped with the new Boulton Paul Sidestrand before he moved to India and 31 Squadron equipped with Bristol F2B's and later Wapiti's. Returning to Britain, he attended the Armament Officer's course which was followed by a series of appointments as an Armament officer. In 1937, he was posted to Canada as Armament Liaison Officer and three years later acted as an adviser to the Department of National Defence.

1943 saw his appointment as Director of Intelligence (Research) and it was here that he began to make a name for himself in intelligence circles. This post brought him into close contact with people such as Dr Reginald Victor Jones and external agencies including SOE and MI6. He was heavily involved in the analysis of German technical developments, including the V1 and V2 as well as clandestine operations by RAF aircraft in support of SOE. Easton retired on 12 Feb 1949.

MI6 Deputy Chief

Easton became an Assistant Chief of the SIS in 1945[1] and Deputy Chief of the SIS in 1951. Although promised he would become Chief of the SIS, this did not happen and he quit in 1958.[2][3][4]

He accepted the post of HM Consul-General in Detroit, which carried with it the advantage that his wife, a Canadian he had met during his tour before the war, had many friends in the area. Remaining Consul-General for ten years he retired in 1968, decided to remain in the USA and subsequently held a number of business positions.[2]

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