My Friend the Mercenary

14th March 2005| Channel 4 Dispatches

Film maker James Brabazon should be locked up in a Zimbabwe prison – and if he hadn’t had to go to a family funeral, that’s where he would be right now. Because James had been chosen to be the official film maker of the disastrous attempted coup in Equatorial Guinea.

James was invited into the adventure by his old friend and bodyguard Nick du Toit, who introduced him to old Etonian Simon Mann. Nick invited James to a top secret rendezvous in a village near Paris to meet Simon and cut him in on the deal. Then James’ granddad died, and he was out of the loop the week the coup kicked off.

As his friend faces thirty four years in the worst jail in Africa, and Simon Mann languishes in prison in Zimbabwe, James travels to some of the most dangerous places in Africa to find out why the coup went so disastrously wrong, why Nick got involved in the first place, and who was really behind it.


Directed & Produced by Carla Garapedian
Reporter: James Brabazon
Executive Producer: David Henshaw