Sandline International

Last updated
Sandline International
Private military security firm
Industry Private military and security contractor
Defunct 2004
Headquarters London, England
Key people
Tim Spicer
Products Law enforcement training, logistics, Close quarter training, and security services
Services Security management, full-service risk management consulting
Website www.sandline.com

Sandline International was a private military company based in London, established in the early 1990s. It was involved in conflicts in Papua New Guinea in 1997 and had a contract with the government under then-Prime Minister Julius Chan, causing the Sandline affair. In 1998 in Sierra Leone Sandline had a contract with ousted President Kabbah and in Liberia in 2003 was involved in a rebel attempt to evict the then-president Charles Taylor near the end of the civil war. Sandline ceased all operations on 16 April 2004. On the company's website, a reason for closure is given:

A private military company (PMC) is a private company providing armed combat or security services for financial gain. PMCs refer to their staff as "security contractors" or "private military contractors". Private military companies refer to their business generally as the "private military industry" or "The Circuit".

Papua New Guinea constitutional monarchy in Oceania

Papua New Guinea, officially the Independent State of Papua New Guinea, is an Oceanian country that occupies the eastern half of the island of New Guinea and its offshore islands in Melanesia, a region of the southwestern Pacific Ocean north of Australia. Its capital, located along its southeastern coast, is Port Moresby. The western half of New Guinea forms the Indonesian provinces of Papua and West Papua.

Sir Julius Chan was Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea from 1980 to 1982 and from 1994 to 1997. He is currently Member of Parliament for New Ireland Province, having won the seat in the 2007 national election. He is also the current Governor of New Ireland Province, since 2007.

Contents

Sandline was founded and managed by retired British Army Lt Col Tim Spicer. Sandline billed itself as a "Private Military Company" (PMC) and offered military training, "operational support" such as equipment and arms procurement and limited direct military activity, intelligence gathering, and public relations services to governments and corporations. While the mass media often referred to Sandline as a mercenary company, the company's founders disputed that characterisation. A commercial adviser for Sandline once told the BBC that the firm saw themselves differently from mercenaries, stating that they were an established entity with “established sets of principles” and that they employed professional people. [2] He reiterated that the firm would not accept contracts from groups or governments that would jeopardise its reputation. [2]

British Army land warfare branch of the British Armed Forces of the United Kingdom

The British Army is the principal land warfare force of the United Kingdom, a part of British Armed Forces. As of 2018, the British Army comprises just over 81,500 trained regular (full-time) personnel and just over 27,000 trained reserve (part-time) personnel.

Timothy Simon "Tim" Spicer, is a former British Army officer, and former chief executive officer of the private security company Aegis Defence Services. He is a veteran of the Falklands War and also served with the British Army in Northern Ireland. He became well known as the founder of Sandline International, a private military company which closed in April 2004.

Mercenary soldier who fights for hire

A mercenary is an individual who is hired to take part in a conflict but is not part of an army or other-governmental organisation. Mercenaries fight for money or other forms payment rather than for political interests. In the last century, mercenaries have increasingly come to be seen as less entitled to protections by rules of war than non-mercenaries. Indeed, the Geneva Conventions declare that mercenaries are not recognized as legitimate combatants and do not have to be granted the same legal protections as captured soldiers of a regular army. In practice, whether or not a person is a mercenary may be a matter of degree, as financial and political interests may overlap, as was often the case among Italian condottieri.

Spicer recounted his experiences with Sandline in the book An Unorthodox Soldier.

Bibliography

International Standard Book Number Unique numeric book identifier

The International Standard Book Number (ISBN) is a numeric commercial book identifier which is intended to be unique. Publishers purchase ISBNs from an affiliate of the International ISBN Agency.

See also

Aegis Defence Services is a British private military and private security company with overseas offices in Afghanistan, the United Arab Emirates, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Libya, Somalia and Mozambique. It is part of the Aegis Group of companies, which includes Aegis LLC, which is based in the United States. It was founded in 2002 by Tim Spicer, who was previously CEO of the private military company Sandline International; Jeffrey Day, an entrepreneur; and Mark Bullough and Dominic Armstrong, former investment bankers.

Executive Outcomes former private military company

Executive Outcomes was a private military company (PMC) founded in South Africa by Eeben Barlow, a former lieutenant-colonel of the South African Defence Force, in 1989. It later became part of the South African-based holding company Strategic Resource Corporation.

Simon Mann British military officer; Equatoguinean detainee

Simon Francis Mann is a former British Army officer and mercenary. He served part of a 34-year prison sentence in Equatorial Guinea for his role in a failed coup d'état in 2004, before receiving a presidential pardon on humanitarian grounds on 2 November 2009.

Related Research Articles

Sierra Leone republic in West Africa

Sierra Leone, officially the Republic of Sierra Leone, informally Salone, is a country on the southwest coast of West Africa. It has a tropical climate, with a diverse environment ranging from savanna to rainforests. The country has a total area of 71,740 km2 (27,699 sq mi) and a population of 7,075,641 as of the 2015 census. Sierra Leone is a constitutional republic with a directly elected president and a unicameral legislature. Sierra Leone has a dominant unitary central government. The president is the head of state and the head of government. The country's capital and largest city is Freetown. Sierra Leone is made up of five administrative regions: the Northern Province, North West Province, Eastern Province, Southern Province and the Western Area. These regions are subdivided into sixteen districts.

The Sandline affair was a political scandal that became one of the defining moments in the history of Papua New Guinea, and particularly the conflict in Bougainville. It brought down the government of Sir Julius Chan, and took Papua New Guinea to the verge of a military revolt. The event was named after Sandline International, a UK-based private military company force.

Jerry Singirok was the commander of the Papua New Guinea Defence Force throughout the Sandline affair of 1997.

Joseph Saidu Momoh Sierra Leonean politician

Major General Joseph Saidu Momoh, OBE served as President of Sierra Leone from November 1985 to April 29, 1992.

Koidu Place in Eastern Province, Sierra Leone

Koidu Town is the capital and largest city of the diamond-rich Kono District in the Eastern Province of Sierra Leone. The population of Koidu Town is 124,662 based on the 2015 Sierra Leone Census. Koidu Town is the fifth largest city in Sierra Leone by population, after Freetown, Kenema, Bo and Makeni. Koidu Town is a major urban, business, commercial and diamond trade center. Koidu Town lies approximately 270 miles east of Freetown, and about 54 miles north of Kenema.

Sierra Leone Civil War civil war between Commonwealth-backed government and rebel factions

The Sierra Leone Civil War (1991–2002) began on 23 March 1991 when the Revolutionary United Front (RUF), with support from the special forces of Charles Taylor’s National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL), intervened in Sierra Leone in an attempt to overthrow the Joseph Momoh government. The resulting civil war lasted 11 years, enveloped the country, and left over 50,000 dead.

Kamajors

The Kamajors were a group of traditional hunters from the Mende ethnic group in the south and east of Sierra Leone. The word "Kamajor" derived from Mende "kama soh", meaning traditional hunter with mystical powers, who were originally employed by local chiefs.

Anthony Leslie Rowland "Tony" Buckingham is a former North Sea oil-rig diver and is currently an oil industry executive with a significant share holding in Heritage Oil Corporation. Heritage is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange since 1999. In 2008, Heritage listed on the London Stock Exchange. Buckingham's direct and indirect share holding is estimated to represent 33% of Heritage. This share was reduced in November 2007 via a share placement made through JP Morgan and Canaccord.

Sir Thomas Stuart Legg, KCB, QC is a British former senior civil servant, who was Permanent Secretary of the Lord Chancellor's Department and Clerk of the Crown in Chancery, United Kingdom (1989–98).

Al J. Venter is a South African war journalist, documentary filmmaker, and author of more than forty books who also served as an Africa and Middle East correspondent for Jane's International Defence Review.

Neall Ellis Rhodesian/South African pilot

Neall Ellis is a South African military aviator and mercenary. Raised in Bulawayo, he joined the South African Air Force after a brief stint in the Rhodesian Army. As a helicopter pilot he was awarded the Honoris Crux decoration in 1983, and later attained field rank. After retiring from the SAAF he contracted for various private military corporations, including Executive Outcomes and Sandline International. During the civil war in Sierra Leone, he and his crew held off Revolutionary United Front (RUF) forces almost single-handedly. He also provided fire support for British troops during Operation Barras.

Peter Alfred Penfold, CMG, OBE, is a retired British diplomat. His career began in 1963, when he joined the Foreign Service as a clerical officer. Two years into his career, he was posted to the British embassy in Bonn, West Germany, and two years after that to Nigeria. From 1970 to 1972, Penfold served as a "floater" in Latin America, filling in as necessary for staff at British missions in the region. He served in Mexico during the 1970 football world cup, and on St Vincent, where he was responsible for organising an evacuation after a volcanic eruption. After Latin America, Penfold briefly served in Canberra, before returning to London to take a post in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO). He earned early promotion to second secretary in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where he was responsible for reporting on the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) and the Eritrean War of Independence and was still in the country during the revolution, in which the pro-Western emperor was overthrown. After completing his tour in Ethiopia, Penfold served as information officer in Port of Spain and then as first secretary in the West Africa Department of the FCO.

Bougainville Civil War

The Bougainville Civil War, also known as the Bougainville conflict, was a multi-layered armed conflict fought from 1988 to 1998 in the North Solomons Province of Papua New Guinea (PNG) between PNG and the secessionist forces of the Bougainville Revolutionary Army (BRA), and between the BRA and other armed groups on Bougainville. The conflict was described by John Momis as the largest conflict in Oceania since the end of World War II in 1945, with an estimated 15,000 to 20,000 Bougainvilleans dead.

The Wagner Group, also known as PMC Wagner, ChVK Wagner, or CHVK Vagner, is a Russian paramilitary organisation. Some have described it as a private military company, whose contractors have reportedly taken part in various conflicts, including operations in the Syrian Civil War on the side of the Syrian government as well as, from 2014 until 2015, in the War in Donbass in Ukraine aiding the separatist forces of the self-declared Donetsk and Luhansk People's Republics. Others are of the opinion that ChVK Wagner is really a unit of the Russian Ministry of Defence in disguise, which is used by the Russian government in conflicts where deniability is called for.

References