Failed EQUATORIAL GUINEA Coup: Simon Mann (cold-blooded blue blood) & Mark Thatcher..


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Naamini kuna wengi mlishasikia kuhusu kesi hii... pia naamini wengi bado mnaifatilia. It is fascinating to know what dirty business went on behind the coup. Below are profiles of some of the culprits... Please read on....

The cold-blooded blue blood

Simon Mann used his wealthy background to reach the highest levels of society and was ruthless in exploiting them for material gain

By:Guardian reporters
guardian.co.uk,Tuesday June 17 2008

Simon Mann, who goes on trial in Equatorial Guinea today, is an Old Etonian adventurer who has spent most of his decidedly mixed career in the murky world of special forces and mercenaries.


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Simon Mann. Photograph: AFP/Getty

His privileged background is in stark contrast to his current residence – Black Beach prison in Malabo, the capital of oil-rich Equatorial Guinea, where he stands accused of launching a failed coup in 2004.

Mann's establishment pedigree is impeccable: his father George captained the England cricket team in the late 1940s and was heir to the Watney's brewing empire.

After Sandhurst, Mann joined the Scots Guards, but soon hungered for something more.

He passed the gruelling selection procedure for the SAS at the first try and became a troop commander in 22 SAS, specialising in intelligence and counter-terrorism. He served in Cyprus, Germany, Norway, Canada, central America and Northern Ireland.

At this stage, it was the perfect establishment career and he was not out of place among the dukes and earls of White's, London's oldest club, where he was a member.

But in 1981 he left the army. A former colleague said: "I think he wanted a new challenge, and after a while some people find army life a little bit mundane."

Mann began his post-army freelance career quietly enough, selling supposedly hack-proof computer software. But he soon moved into the security business, reportedly providing bodyguards to wealthy Arabs to protect their Scottish estates from poachers, before briefly being persuaded back into uniform in 1990 to serve on British Gulf war commander Sir Peter de la Billiere's staff in Riyadh.

In 1993 he set up a mercenary outfit, Executive Outcomes, with the controversial entrepreneur Tony Buckingham. It made a fortune protecting oil installations from rebels in Angola's civil war.

In 1995, when EO became too high profile, he set up an offshoot, Sandline International, with another ex-Scots Guard, Lt-Col Tim Spicer, and shipped arms to Sierra Leone in contravention of a UN embargo.
An estimated £5m made, Mann step down a gear.

According to the land registry, he bought Inchmery, a former residence of the Rothschild family, in 1997, in the name of Myers Developments Inc, a firm registered in the offshore tax haven of Guernsey. Under the advertisement, "Is this the most beautiful beach house in the country?" he then rented it out and moved to Cape Town.

Already a father of three children from two previous marriages, Mann had another three with his new wife, Amanda, and settled at 18 Duckitt Avenue, a Cape Dutch gabled house in Constantia, a secluded suburb beloved by British expatriates such as Earl Spencer and Mark Thatcher. Mann went fishing, bought sculptures and threw dinner parties for a small set of friends.

There was also an appearance in a gritty television reconstruction of Bloody Sunday in which he agreed to play the part of Colonel Derek Wilford, commander of the paratroopers who fired on marchers in Derry. In 2002, Mann told the Guardian he took the part to defend the army, though he admitted Bloody Sunday was a "cock up".

Mann then embarked on a monumental blunder himself by becoming involved in a plot against Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, the tyrant who has ruled the small west African nation of Equatorial Guinea since 1979, and who pockets vast profits from offshore oil drilling.

Together with a group of 60 mercenaries, Mann was arrested in March 2004 when their private plane landed at Harare airport. The mercenaries denied plotting to topple Equatorial Guinea's government and claimed they were flying to the Congo to provide security for the diamond industry.

Mann and the rest of the group were put on trial in Zimbabwe and on August 27 2005, Mann was found guilty of attempting to buy arms for an alleged coup plot and sentenced to seven years imprisonment. Sixty-six of the other men were acquitted.

Thatcher was embroiled in the plot and pleaded guilty in South Africa to unwittingly funding a purchase of an aircraft allegedly linked to the mercenaries.

He was given a four-year suspended sentence and fined £265,000, after entering into a plea-bargain deal.

Despite Mann's hopes that he might be released by Zimbabwe, he was sent to Equatorial Guinea at the end of January this year. His lawyers accused Zimbabwean officials of a criminal conspiracy in secretly flying him out of the country before his appeals procedure was finished.
Source link: http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2007/may/09/equatorialguinea.world

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Simon Mann trial: Mark Thatcher named as coup plot organiser

By:Peter Walker, Matthew Weaver and agencies
guardian.co.uk,Tuesday June 17 2008

Mark Thatcher was named today as one of the organisers of a failed coup in Equatorial Guinea on the opening day of the trial of the British mercenary Simon Mann.

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Simon Mann, with glasses, at the Chikurubi maximum security prison, outside Harare, Zimbabwe in 2004. Photograph: AP

The son of the former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher was named by Equatorial Guinea's state prosecutor, Jose Olo Obono, as he opened the case against Mann.

Obono said the prosecution was seeking a jail term of 30 years for Mann.
The mercenary is charged with leading a plot financed in part by Thatcher to overthrow Equatorial Guinea's president, Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, and install an exiled opposition leader, Severo Moto, who is currently under arrest in Spain.

The severity of the charges, which also include "destabilising the peace", merited the death penalty but this was not permitted under the terms of Mann's extradition from Zimbabwe, Obono said. A verdict was expected on Thursday.

Obono told the Associated Press news agency prosecutors would "demonstrate through Simon Mann's own statements the level of participation of each of the people implicated in this affair, which was orchestrated from beginning to end by Simon Mann."

Mann has given a variety of explanations, including that he and his mainly South African mercenary team were hired to be bodyguards for a new president, not to overthrow Obiang.

Thatcher struck a plea bargain with prosecutors in January 2005 over the coup plot. He admitted he had provided $275,000 (£140,000) for the purchase of a helicopter to Crause Steyl, a South African pilot and confessed plotter.

Although claiming at first that he thought it was for an air ambulance, he agreed he had suspected the helicopter "might be used for mercenary activity". He was fined $450,000 and given a four-year suspended sentence.

Mann, 55, an Old Etonian former SAS officer and heir to a brewing fortune, was driven in an armoured car to the courtroom, a conference centre in the capital city, Malabo, at the start of the trial. The court was heavily guarded by helmeted soldiers carrying machine guns.

Wearing a grey prison suit with blue stripes on the back, Mann looked on in silence as the Spanish-language hearing was conducted.

Outside the building, more armoured vehicles patrolled the streets and snipers were deployed on nearby rooftops. Obiang told reporters yesterday he feared a plot to kill the mercenary during his trial.

Reporters and other foreign observers allowed into the courtroom had to leave their cameras and mobile phones outside, exchange their shoes for flip-flops and could only use supplied notebooks and pens.

Human rights groups accuse Obiang's regime, which began after a 1979 coup that overthrew his uncle, of staging show trials and warn that Mann is unlikely to receive a fair hearing.

Mann's government-appointed defence lawyer, Jose Pablo Nvo, was given the job just two weeks ago.

Mann was detained in Zimbabwe in March 2004 after a private plane owned by his security company carrying 64 alleged mercenaries landed in Harare to collect weapons. He has already spent more than four years in a Zimbabwe jail. Accused of heading to Equatorial Guinea to stage a coup, Mann insisted the group was going to the Democratic Republic of the Congo to provide security to the diamond industry.

In August 2004 Mann was sentenced to seven years in prison by a Zimbabwean court for illegally possessing weapons. He was then extradited to Equatorial Guinea in January this year to face coup charges.

A South African former special forces soldier, Nick du Toit, was jailed for 34 years in Equatorial Guinea in late 2004 for leading an alleged advance party of plotters.

In his first media interview since his arrest, Mann told Channel 4 in March that the London-based Lebanese millionaire Ely Calil was the main instigator of the plot. Calil has always denied involvement. Mann said he was the "manager" of the coup, but did not plan it.

Mann also said Thatcher was "part of the team". Thatcher pleaded guilty in South Africa in 2005 to helping to charter a helicopter that he agreed "might be used for mercenary activity". Under a plea bargain he received a four-year suspended sentence and a £265,000 fine.

Equatorial Guinea is Africa's third-largest oil producer, but the bulk of its population remains very poor. Obiang's regime is accused of being one of Africa's worst violators of human rights.

In parliamentary elections last month, the president's ruling party and his allies won 99 out of 100 seats.
Source link: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/jun/17/equatorialguinea1

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Matajiri na viongozi wa nchi za magharibi wamekuwa wakimastermind mapinduzi ya kijeshi kwenye nchi za africa tangia nchi hizo zilipopata uhuru, hali itaendelea kwani bado wanainterest katika nchi zetu na ndo maana hawawezi kuziacha zijitawale zenyewe lazima waingilie.
 
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More on the trial...
Shackled but smiling, Simon Mann begins trial over African coup plot

Chaotic court hears Mark Thatcher named among conspirators in alleged bid to overthrow president

By: David Pallister in Malabo
The Guardian,Wednesday June 18 2008

With a tank on the street and the international conference centre ringed by heavily armed soldiers and police, Simon Mann, shackled by the legs, finally had his day in court in Equatorial Guinea yesterday, amid chaotic scenes of security precautions and, contrary to government promises, the entire proceedings conducted in Spanish.

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Mann, looking pale and slight but otherwise cheerful, professed after the three-hour hearing that he did not understand a word.

But for attempting to mount a coup against President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo in 2004 the prosecution asked that he should spend 32 years in prison. He was not asked to plead but his lawyer said he was not the mastermind and should not be penalised so harshly.

The day started with a muggy drizzle as Mann, 55, was driven from Black Beach prison in a convoy of two armoured personnel carriers followed by a truck full of soldiers. He was also accompanied by six Equatorial Guineans and a Lebanese national, all in blue prison uniforms with white stripes.
Only Mann, though, was shackled, with an 18-inch chain around his ankles. He slowly shuffled into the conference centre, which was only announced as the trial venue the day before.

With a wide colonnaded entrance, the centre resembled a garish concert hall, circa 1970, with seats for about 300. Snipers watched the scene from a nearby roof. Outside, almost the entire diplomatic community of about 30 people, trooped in unimpeded as did 75 other dignitaries. The diplomats had been specially invited by the government and some, diplomatically, were sceptical of the reasons. "We are entering uncharted waters here," said one.

The dozen journalists fared less well - the president told a news conference on Monday there were fears that deadly and sophisticated weapons could be smuggled in to do Mann some harm. Besides having their mobiles, pens and notebooks confiscated, reporters were subject to body searches and told to remove all jewellery including rings. One was told to leave his glasses behind until he pointed out they were on prescription.

Yet when the press entered the room they were initially allowed to stroll over to where Mann sat with the other defendants on a rank of fixed seats to one side of the court. Before the press were moved away, he was asked if he had been treated well. He smiled and said: "Yes, from the beginning."
Mann was even allowed to walk slowly to the public toilet in the foyer accompanied by only one guard. But before the three black-cloaked judges took their place at the long table, beneath a huge chandelier, the men were then moved to the front two rows of the auditorium, seated on plush red chairs.

Then came the first drama. The presiding judge announced that, under law, no defendants had to appear in court in shackles. For 15 minutes the room sat in complete silence until a prison guard arrived with a key. Mann took off the cloths which had prevented his ankles from being chafed and put them in his pocket.

Although two translators were sworn in they were not used for the next three hours. The judge opened with the reading of a police report setting out the well-rehearsed allegations: Mann had conspired with the London-based Lebanese businessman Ely Calil and the exiled politician Severo Motto to mount an armed coup with South African mercenaries that would not have ruled out killing the president.

In return Mann would have received £15m. There was a contract in evidence.

Then it was the turn of the attorney general, Jose Olo Obono, who outlined the prosecution case and read out the charges: crimes against the head of state, against the form of government and against the peace and independence of the republic.

He said Mann's first lawyer, who was suspended from the case last week, was to be prosecuted for insulting Obiang. This was a reference to the fact that he had wanted to argue that Mann's extradition from Zimbabwe in February this year was illegal.

Obono compared Mann with the terrorists who attacked New York, Madrid and London. They were, he said, "a threat to humanity that must be wiped out".

The attorney general also claimed the main conspirators included Calil, Mark Thatcher, the British businessmen Greg Wales and David Tremain and Nigel Morgan, a former intelligence officer with the Irish Guards now living in South Africa. Calil had put in $2m (£1m).

Obono told the court for the first time that the Lebanese defendant, a Malabo resident called Mohammed Salam, had known about the plot but failed to tell the authorities.

The court heard the six local men were opposition members of Motto's party who had been in touch with Motto by email. Each of the 70 mercenaries would have received £3,000. For the first two charges against Mann he asked for 14 years and eight months and two years and four months on the third.

The defence lawyers were about to present their opening speeches when the judge dropped another bombshell. He ordered a smartly dressed man who had been sitting with the diplomats to join the defendants. He is a serving minister. Although evidence has yet to be adduced it is understood he knew of Calil's investment in Equatorial Guinea as a precursor to the coup and failed to raise the alarm.

And so to Mann's new lawyer, Jose Pablo Nvo, who in a short speech said his client was a "mere instrument" working for Calil and the coup could have gone ahead without him. It was, in effect, a guilty plea.
The hearing continues.....
Source link: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/jun/18/equatorialguinea

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Simon Mann gets 34 years in Equatorial Guinea jail !!!!!!!


By David Pallister, James Sturcke and agencies, guardian.co.uk,
Monday July 7, 2008

The British mercenary Simon Mann was today sentenced to 34 years in prison for plotting to overthrow the government of Equatorial Guinea.

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Simon Mann during his trial for a failed coup attempt in Equatorial Guinea. Photograph: Rebecca Blackwell/AP




The Eton-educated former SAS officer was sentenced after a trial last month during which it was claimed that a number of western governments knew about the coup plans. The court heard that Sir Mark Thatcher, the son of the former British prime minister, was a committed member of the group.


Mann was arrested in Harare, Zimbabwe, in 2004 with dozens of mercenaries when their private plane landed. He acknowledged knowingly taking part in the attempt to topple the government, but his lawyer argued Mann was a secondary player.


The sentence is longer than expected. During the trial, José Olo Obano, Equatorial Guinea's attorney general, urged the court to sentence Mann to 31 years, eight months and three days. The death penalty was not permitted under the terms of Mann's extradition from Zimbabwe. It was suggested last month that Mann may be released before completing any sentence.


Mann, wearing a grey prison uniform, stood impassively as the sentence was read out by the presiding judge, Carlos Mangue, in the heavily guarded courtroom.


Another defendant, Mohamed Salaam, a Lebanese businessman, received a jail sentence of 18 years, while four Equatorial Guinean nationals were given terms of six years each. Another was jailed for one year, and one other was acquitted.


Mann was ordered to pay a fine and compensation to the Equatorial Guinea state totalling around $24m (£12.1m). Mangue said in the ruling that Mann failed to show "an attitude of regret", despite his apology before the court.


During the trial in Malabo, a contrite Mann claimed he was "not the person I was" after four years in prison. He claimed that Spain and South Africa, with the endorsement of the South African president, Thabo Mbeki, had supported the plot. By January 2004, two months before the attempted coup was put into action, it was, Mann said, "like an official operation. The governments of Spain and South Africa were giving the green light: 'You've got to go, you've got to do it.'"


Senior members of the Equatorial Guinea army, police and cabinet were also implicated, Mann said, and he was given details of President Teodoro Obiang's daily movements and his health problems. From the Pentagon in Washington, and from the CIA and the big US oil companies, came tacit approval for regime change, according to Mann.


Thatcher "was not just an investor, he came completely on board and became a part of the management team", Mann claimed during his trial. He said Thatcher had provided $350,000 (£178,000) in funding for the coup.
Thatcher pleaded guilty in South Africa to unwittingly funding the purchase of an aircraft allegedly linked to the mercenaries. He was given a four-year suspended sentence and fined £265,000, after entering into a plea-bargain deal.


Mann was convicted in Zimbabwe of attempting to buy arms for an alleged coup plot and sentenced to seven years imprisonment. He was rendered from Zimbabwe to Equatorial Guinea in January. His lawyers accused Zimbabwean officials of a criminal conspiracy in secretly flying him out of the country before his appeals procedure was finished.


Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo has ruled the small west African nation of Equatorial Guinea since a 1979 coup overthrew his uncle. He pockets vast profits from offshore oil drilling. Equatorial Guinea is Africa's third-largest oil producer, but the bulk of its population remains very poor. Obiang's regime is accused of being one of Africa's worst violators of human rights.


Mann told the court that he took Thatcher to the Chelsea home of Ely Calil, the Lebanese businessman who is alleged by the government of Equatorial Guinea to have been the main financier of the plot. He named the management board as Calil, himself, a London property developer, Thatcher and a Lebanese colleague of Calil who lives in Beirut.


Calil has always strongly denied involvement in the coup plot and says Mann was pressured into repeated in court allegations that previously been extracted from him under torture in Zimbabwe.


Thatcher's money was used to buy a small plane that would transport the new provisional president, Severo Moto, from his opposition exile in Spain to Malabo via the Canary Islands.


Mann accepted he was doing the job for money – said to be $15m - but he claimed he was sympathetic to the story he was told that oil money was not reaching the people. "I believed it was right."
Source: The Guardian

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hii ni asante kwa mugabe, penda tusipende, wangekuwa wamepitia nchi nyingine kama t........ wasingekamatwa, au kesi ingebadilishwa ikawa tofauti.
 
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Bila Mugabe haya mambo tusingeyasikia!!
 
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Matajiri na viongozi wa nchi za magharibi wamekuwa wakimastermind mapinduzi ya kijeshi kwenye nchi za africa tangia nchi hizo zilipopata uhuru, hali itaendelea kwani bado wanainterest katika nchi zetu na ndo maana hawawezi kuziacha zijitawale zenyewe lazima waingilie.
Sawa kabisa. Matukio kama haya yameelezewa vizuri katika movie inayoitwa 'Dogs of War'.
 
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Mugabe ni dictator kama rais wa Equatorial Guinea.Zaidi ya 3 millions zimbabweans have left the country due to hunger,human rights abuses na diseases!Wanasota South Afrika mitaani!
Haika wake up
 
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Simon Mann freed from Equatorial Guinea jail

Simon Mann, the Briton who led a failed coup attempt in Equatorial Guinea, has been pardoned and released from prison.



By Sebastien Berger in Johannesburg
Published: 3:35PM GMT 03 Nov 2009

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Simon Mann, the Briton who led a failed coup attempt in Equatorial Guinea, has been pardoned and released from prison Photo: AP


Mann, a former SAS officer and heir to the Watney Mann brewing fortune, walked free from prison in the capital Malabo and was due to leave the country later on Tuesday.
He was convicted in the West African country last year of crimes against the state for his attempt to topple President Teodoro Obiang Nguema. He was sentenced to 34 years in prison.
More at http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/wor...n-Mann-freed-from-Equatorial-Guinea-jail.html
 

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