Simon Mann

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Simon Francis Mann (born 26 June 1952) is a British mercenary and former British Army officer.

Army career

Mann was commissioned into the Royal Scots in the early 1970s, and subsequently joined the Special Air Service, eventually becoming a troop commander in G Squadron of 22 SAS, specialising in intelligence and counter-terrorism. He served a three-year tour in Northern Ireland, as well as postings in West Germany, Norway, Cyprus, Canada and Central America.[1]

David Stirling

According to Adam Roberts, Mann worked for a private military company run by David Stirling, 'but when Stirling's private empire became embroiled in scandal at the end of the 1980s over the misuse of charity money, it was time to move on.'[2]

After serving in Cyprus, Germany, Central America and Northern Ireland, Mann left the army in 1979 and joined KAS, a private military company run by Colonel David Stirling, founder of the SAS. But it was not a success. KAS Enterprises was linked to scandals involving the misuse of World Wildlife Fund money and industrial espionage during major takeover bids.
After the demise of KAS in 1991, Mann rejoined the army.[3]

Gulf War

Mann re-enlisted during the first Gulf War, joining the army staff at the British headquarters in Saudi Arabia, where he liaised with active members of the Special Air Service.[4] Tim Spicer states that he co-opted Mann into Peter de la Billiere's team after the Gulf War. [5]


According to Michael Grunberg, it was Mann who introduced Tony Buckingham to Eeben Barlow and Executive Outcomes. Buckingham and Mann then planned the assault on Soyo in Angola which retook the town from UNITA in 1993.[6]


Mann was Diamondworks’ chief operations officer.[7]

Wonga Coup

Mann was arrested in Zimbabwe in March 2004 during the collapse of the Wonga Coup plot to overthrow the government of Equatorial Guinea. After serving time in jail in Harare, he was extradited to Equatorial Guinea in February 2008 and sentenced to 34 years in its capital's notorious Black Beach jail. But after just one year he was granted a pardon on humanitarian grounds in November 2009 by President Teodoro Obiang, who he had originally plotted to overthrow. [8]


See also


Merrick 'SIMON MANN: A VERY ENGLISH' CORPORATE KILLER', Corporate Watch, Newsletter 22


  1. The Wonga Coup, by Adam Roberts, Profile Books, 2006, p5.
  2. The Wonga Coup, by Adam Roberts, Profile Books, 2006, p6.
  3. Random House: Book extract from Thatcher's Fortunes: The Life and Times of Mark Thatcher, by Mark Hollingsworth and Paul Halloran, accessed 4 May 2008.
  4. The Wonga Coup, by Adam Roberts, Profile Books, 2006, p6.
  5. An Unorthodox Soldier, by Tim Spicer, Mainstream Publishing, 1999, p143.
  6. Making a Killing: How Corporations Use Armed Force to Do Business, by Madelaine Drohan, Random House Canada, 2003, pp205-2078.
  7. Energy firm link to blood diamonds, by Ben Laurance, Sunday Times, 30 December 2007.
  8. Simon Mann pardoned over role in Equatorial Guinea coup plot