Executive Outcomes is one of a number of 'private security' organisations
offering its services to third world countries, particularly those in Africa.
Most of the countries which use its services are desperately poor but have
significant mineral and oil resources. Therefore EO appears to be paid through
concession deals offered to associated companies, which then foot EO's bill.
In general EO's operations seem to reflect British and/or South African
foreign policy in the area. This, together with the 'ground intelligence'
provided by EO to South African and British intelligence (and Australia, Canada,
US and New Zealand under the UKUSA arrangement) probably explains why the
organisation has survived and prospered.
Connections with Sandline
An associated organisation, Sandline, seems to carry out operations under
similar arrangements to EO but with a greater British involvement. Sandline is
owned by a nominee shareholder, Adson Holdings. At the PNG Commission of Enquiry
into Sandline's contract with the PNG government, Tim Spicer denied that
Sandline was part of Executive Outcomes. However the Enquiry concluded that the
'controllers' of Sandline International were obviously Anthony Buckingham,
Michael Grunberg and at least to some extent Mr Spicer. It said Executive
Outcomes was a 'significant' sub-contractor of Sandline and 'suppled a
significant number of the personel' brought to PNG by Sandline.
The Commission also inspected documents in Hong Hong including a Hong Kong
bank account in the name of Sandline Holdings. The signatories were Simon Mann,
Lafras Luitingh, Eeben Barlow and Anthony Buckingham. This, together with the
degree of cooperation evident between Sandline and EO, suggests that Sandline is
simply one part of the overall set-up and the division is largely on paper.
Executive Outcomes' corporate structure is highly elaborate and winds around
the globe. It is constantly evolving and changing. Therefore all I can present
here is a generalised snapshot.
In simple terms the organisation falls into two halves; companies providing
services (telecommunications, management, recruitment, transport etc), and
companies providing or developing income through the exploitation of mining
concessions. The latter usually have some connection with Anthony Buckingham,
Robert Friedland or Ranesh Saxena.
There are two companies called Executive Outcomes. One is based in the UK,
the other in Pretoria, South Africa. The South African company is controlled by
a Bahamas-registered company called Strategic Resources Corporation.
Here are some details of some, but not all, of the key personnel involved
with Executive Outcomes and companies with which it has links.
Luther Eeben Barlow
South African National.
Special Forces background.
Barlow probably co-ordinates the military and security know-how and planning
for the organisation. Several sources have told me that he was involved with the
Civil Cooperation Bureau's Western European operation based in Knightsbridge,
London. They suggest that because of this involvement he may have changed his
name at some point in the past.
Barlow is a director and shareholder of UK companies Executive Outcomes Ltd
and Advanced Systems Communications Ltd. He became a director of Executive
Outcomes on 7th September 1993 (principal activity described as 'consultancy in
security management systems'). Barlow himself describes Executive Outcomes as a
'military advisory company' offering its services to Governments with internal
problems. He became a director of Advanced Systems Communications (satellite
communications and equipment design and manufacturing) in August 1994. Last
Summer he told the press that he had resigned from Executive Outcomes. However
as of January this year he was still a director of the UK company Executive
Computer software expert
Special forces background.
Mann probably helps co-ordinate the massive computing and communications
resources needed by the organisation.
Mann was a director of UK companies QDQ Systems Ltd and its holding company
Meridian Technology Ltd until November 1986. He was also a director of UK
companies Data Integrity plc and Data Integrity (Holdings) Ltd until 1989. These
companies provided secure software to financial institutions.
Between April 1990 and October 1993 Man was director and shareholder of a UK
company called Highland Software Ltd. A Lloyds broker, Johnathan Hart, was also
a director. Significantly, one address for the company was on the 2nd Floor of
22 South Audley Street, London. Sir David Stirling, the former SAS commander and
pioneer of the concept of private armies, based his company, KAS on the first
Grunberg probably performs the role of advisor on the most efficient tax
structures, transfers of funds, and international property and commercial law.
He is the brains behind EO's labyrinthine corporate structure.
He was a partner in Stoy Hayward (now BDO Stoy Hayward) from 1981 to June
1994. BDO Stoy Hayward is one of the UK's largest firms of accountants. It had a
particularly strong presence in the Defence Sector during the 1980s and, because
of this, has long-standing connections with the intelligence services.
According to his former colleagues Grunberg was one of the rising stars on
the consulting side of Stoy Hayward. However upheavals in Stoy Hayward's senior
management precipitated his falling from grace. While at BDO Stoy Hayward he was
keen on charity work. He is a director of Tommy's Campaign Ltd, a gynacological
research charity connected with a London hospital.
Grunberg became a director of Plaza 107, based in the King's Road, Chelsea,
in August 1994, along with an ex-BP man, Philip Dimmock. Plaza 107 is simply
described as 'a general commercial company' and seems to provide core
administrative services for EO. He is also the shareholder.
.Grunberg is also a director of a Canadian mining company quoted on the
Vancouver Stock Exchange called DiamondWorks. Grunberg has acknowleged that
Sandline and Heritage Oil (see below) are 'clients' of Plaza 107 Ltd which
provides 'representation and support services'. Plaza 107's auditor is Grunberg
& Co. Nothing like keeping it in the family.
Anthony Leslie Rowland Buckingham
Strategic resources expertise
Special forces background.
Tony Buckingham seems to provide the link between the military side of the
Executive Outcomes complex and the management and exploitation of the strategic
resources it controls. As such, and in terms of 'following the money', he is the
most interesting person.
Buckingham controls the Isle of Man company Branch Energy Ltd, which owns
diamond concessions in Angola and Sierra Leone. Branch Energy Ltd is now 100%
owned by DiamondWorks (formerly called Carson Gold), which, although publicly
quoted on the VSE, is majority-owned by Buckingham and Canadian mining
entrepreneur Robert Friedland. Buckingham is a director of DiamondWorks.
To confuse the picture, other companies connected to Branch Energy but, as
far as I know, not part of DiamondWorks are Branch Minerals Ltd, which owns gold
concessions in Angola and Sierra Leone, and Branch Energy Uganda, which holds
gold concessions in that country. Branch International, according to Michael
Grunberg, 'searches for precious minerals through its own set of companies'.
Buckingham is also director of UK book publishers Fourth Estate Ltd, which is
also part-owned by the Guardian. He lives in Guernsey. There are
connections between the Isle of Man company Branch Energy Ltd and Hamilton
Brothers Ltd, Hamilton Nominees Ltd, Hansard Management Services Ltd and Hansard
Trust Company Ltd, which are all based in Guernsey. The Hansard companies are
said to be owned and/or controlled by Buckingham.
Although Buckingham does not show up on Executive Outcomes company documents,
the Prospectus of DiamondWorks makes it clear that there is a relationship,
stating that Buckingham 'facilitates introductions' for Executive Outcomes to
Duriing the late 1980s Buckingham was a director of the UK company Sabre
Petroleum Ltd. His associates at Sabre Petroleum included Robert Christiensen
and Naushad Jivraj (Tanzanian), both involved with the London Park Hotels group.
He resigned from Sabre Petroleum in July 1991.
Following that he founded Heritage Oil and Gas Ltd in 1992. He remains
chairman of this company. Former Liberal Party leader, Sir David Steel and
Andrew Gifford, his former researcher, are on the board.