This is a fascinated story of a complex man who lived an extraordinary life as a hero of human rights only to die as a traitor in the eyes of British officials.
Roger Casement was born in Kingstown, County Dublin, to a Protestant father and a Catholic mother. He was secretly baptised into the Catholic faith by his mother at the age of four but for most of his life, he considered himself as a Protestant and only a few weeks before his death, he was formally converted to Catholicism. In his youth, Casement worked briefly as a clerk for a Liverpool shipping line, before he moved to Africa in 1884 to work with Henry Morton Stanley, where later as British Consul, began investigations into slave labour in Congo. His report on the atrocities to the indigenous people by the Belgian Force Publique was published in 1904 and it caused a public outrage all across Europe.
In 1910, Roger Casement was sent by the British government into the Amazon jungle to investigate alleged abuse of workers in the rubber industry in the region of the river Putumayo, a no man’s land between Peru and Colombia that today belongs to Colombia. At the end of the nineteen century, a Peruvian merchant called Julio César Arana, taking advantage of the rubber boom, begun to collect wild rubber in the disputed region of Putumayo. Before long his Peruvian Amazon Rubber Company became million-dollar company and Arana decided to registered it in London in order to attract more capital. Soon, the alleged atrocities to indigenous populations and to British subjects, such as the Barbadians, by the employers of Casa Arana, forced the British Parliament to order an investigation.