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Harold R. Miller Biography

Harold R. Miller (Read Penn Gwinn's Biography)

Harold R. Miller, author of The Thai Moon Saloon, The Belize File, The Australian File, The Philippine Chase and The Emerald Head Caper (The Penn Gwinn series) uses his private investigator case files as the basis for his novels.

His semi-volunteer status in the Defense Intelligence Agency found him stationed in Okinawa, Belize and other exotic locales. The proximity to the ocean and his undercover status allowed him to pursue his love of sailboats. He built four sailboats; two of which were his own design.

Five years spent in Hollywood as a member of various film crews, as well as time spent at the American Film Institute provided him with a working knowledge of the entertainment business.

His training in the agency, and a natural ability to 'discreetly snoop', provided an excellent background for private investigation, a career begun in 1969. He passed The California Private Investigator's examination in 1977, and has been a career investigator ever since.

Known as Hal to his friends, he has worked in the fields of surveillance (sub-rosa camera and stationary surveillance), undercover, loss prevention/determination, commercial insurance fraud and locating run-a-ways. Six years in Idaho allowed him to develop experience in his specialty field of criminal defense investigations. He worked for the Public Defender's offices in Twin Falls County, Idaho and Jerome, Idaho, as well as for a number of criminal defense attorneys. He was the only private investigator sanctioned by the 5th District and 6th District Courts of Idaho to work defense investigations on capital cases. He was also the District Director for the San Francisco District of California Association of Licensed Investigators, and the President of the Idaho Private Investigator's Association.

His experiences in journalism, the intelligence agencies, film, and private investigation provide the basis for a number of action/adventure international intrigue novels. The Penn Gwinn Series is being considered for film production, and there is talk of a television series.

Penn Gwinn Biography

Penn Gwinn enlisted in the U.S. Army, originally serving in the U.S. Army Security Agency. Due to his adaptable aptitude for intelligence work, he was inducted into the Defense Intelligence Agency, where he was trained to do field work, an assignment the DIA does not admit exists.

During his fourteen year tenure in that field, he was engaged in several assignments to place listening devices in South East Asia, before, during and after the Viet Nam non-war, as well as in various Latin American countries. When he and his agency partner were released by the agency, they stayed in Thailand, where they operated the Thai Moon Saloon. Their bar was rather unique in that it had an American decor, and martial arts displays for their patron's entertainment.

Penn Gwinn eventually returned to the States, where he obtained a Private Investigator's license in California. He met PZ Thomas and formed a company which specialized in insurance related defense, and criminal defense investigations. They opened their office for the Flyin' Penguin Detective Agency in San Rafael, California, where Penn lived on his 53 foot sailboat, the Flyin' Penguin, with his live-in secretary, Lara.

Due to Penn's knowledge and experience in affairs of international intrigue, the Flyin' Penguin Detective Agency was sought out and given certain assignments by clients whom were often covertly from the U.S. government. Their varied investigative cases took him to the Philippines, Australia, Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama, Colombia and Guyana.

In his fifties, with balding pate, beard, and a developing need for bifocals, Penn decided he had enough of the investigations racket, and tried to settle in Belize for the easy life of a legitimate hunter of pre-Columbian relics. However, the retirement proved short lived when he discovered relic hunting involved more investigative work than he expected. He quickly found his clients were just as impatient, and the people he had to speak with to locate relics were just as deceptive, as those confronted in the States.

When last interviewed, he was still involved with relic hunting, confronting nefarious characters, and dodging greedy government representatives. However, he did mention contemplating another change in career.