Four Special Forces officers are facing trial over allegations they received £20,000 after selling spent ammunition to recycling centers in the United States.
- Four officers from an elite group to support the special forces will stand trial for fraud
- They allegedly sold spent ammunition without providing revenue to the Ministry of Defense
- The officers face imprisonment, followed by dismissal, if they are found guilty
Four officers from the Special Forces unit will be tried for fraud after selling £20,000 worth of spent ammunition.
They are said to have taken ten tons of copper casings to recycling centers in the United States and failed to provide the proceeds to the Department of Defense.
The defendants were training with the Elite Special Forces Support Group (SFSG), which fights alongside Special Forces on top-secret missions abroad, when the crimes allegedly occurred.
According to prosecutors, Captain Stephen Child, Brigadier General Belcher and NCOs Jason Davidson and Paul Lindsey were involved in a joint project to deprive the Department of Defense of funds from the sales. They deny the charges.
In the two-week trial, beginning January 10, Catrick Military Court in North Yorkshire will hear that between 2017 and 2019 about 100 SS soldiers were deployed on four training missions at Fort Knox in Kentucky (pictured)
In the two-week trial, beginning on January 10, Catrick Military Court in North Yorkshire will hear that between 2017 and 2019 about 100 SS soldiers were deployed on four training missions at Fort Knox in Kentucky.
Before each exercise, their ammunition, valued at at least one million pounds, was flown out of the UK by the RAF.
Subsequently, the excess and spent ammunition was supposed to be returned by air, but the shortage of aircraft led to the rental of safe facilities for its storage and the sale of ten tons of used casings.
The Service’s Prosecutor’s Office alleges that the four officers failed to declare the amount of cash they received for the brass casings. A jury of five members of the military council will be military officers.
The four officers face imprisonment, followed by dismissal if convicted. Captain Child, of the Parachute Regiment, served in the Army for 30 years. In 2019, he is sent from the SFSG to the Army Infantry Battle School, where he serves as a senior instructor.
According to his LinkedIn profile, Captain Belcher spent two and a half years at the SFSG headquarters in South Wales as “Senior Supply Chain Manager, responsible for a multi-million account inventory program in multiple regions”.
Court-martial listings show Petty Officer 2nd Petty Officer Davidson now serving in the 3rd Battalion, Parachute Regiment, while Petty Officer 1st Petty Officer Lindsey works at the British Army Training Center BATUS in Canada.
The SFSG consists of the Parachute Battalion, the Royal Navy and the RAF. The details of its operations are classified, but its soldiers are known to have fought the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria and the Taliban in Afghanistan.
An army spokesman confirmed that the officers would be prosecuted, but added: “As the process is ongoing, it would not be appropriate to provide further comments.”