We women were put in two Range Rovers at the direction of Andy, with the men leading the way in another.
The hotel was bad and it was easy to tell the rooms had not been used in months; dusty, dirty, stale. The water had to run for thirty minutes before the yellow rusty color went away. Well, we are not drinking that stuff without putting in sanitizing pellets or boiling it.
We had brought plenty of bottled water and MRE’s so we would not have to venture out.
There was a sign in the lobby that the restaurant would only serve the supper meal and the bar was closed by order of the local government. That translated out that they had not paid enough bribe money to the local officials.
This hotel was listed as belonging to a major international chain. Yeah, right; that was the lie of the century. I guess in this part of the world corporate could not force then to stop advertising past connections or force them to take the signage down.
The elevators did work; I also noticed that when we walked by the security camera panel was black. That was a setback in a way; Robert was planning to hack the camera system so we could keep an eye on the Prince when he arrived and then disable it when we wanted.
Robert and Burt had came prepared for setbacks, each of them had a suitcase with a portable satellite dish for communications and several wireless cameras they were going to put in the hall.
Robert was with my team and Burt was with team five staying in the other hotel that was within seeing distance. Burt reported that hotel conditions were not any better over there. We were prepared for whichever hotel the Prince met with the arms dealer in.
The two teams had long range radios – the kind hunters used – so we could communicate. Burt was still monitoring the Prince’s banking and Robert the emails.
At 1400 I turned on my phone and made the call to Jenny letting them know we had arrived and were on schedule. I received an update on the interrogations. I would turn the phone on again at 1600, 1800, 2000 and 2200 South African time. 2200 would last of the day, 1500 at Morton – barring any emergencies.
I did have a clean laptop I could do emails with if I really had to; it had come from England. Robert had installed a stripper program to clean it every time it was shut down and the operating system I would use was on a portable hard drive. Robert and Burt were using the same type.
Wednesday morning the men – with the exception of Andy, Robert, Burt and the Mossad ladies – and a couple of guards and I met their hunting guides. That carried the last of the prince’s terrorist supporters out to the boonies.
Thursday was more planning and finalizing the last details as best we could. I began to wonder if the meeting between the Prince and the Chinese arms dealer was going to happen. I had expected some kind of communication between the two but all was quiet. I was getting nervous and paranoid.
All that changed about dark; Robert intercepted a dozen emails among the four.
We already knew where the diamonds, rubies and gold the Prince was to get was hidden. It was in the hotel safe; the two Iranian spies gave it up when they thought they were going to die. The small treasure was in three travel bags. The gold was in 10 wooden boxes, 50 kilos to the box.
The mines apparently were still very productive even after the owner was told there was no gold left in the ground. That is, unless the real owner of the mine was the Kingdom and this was another terror financing scheme by the Prince.
Crown Prince Sultan al-Zahab, Prince Abdulraouf al-Zahab and Abu Barazan (the terrorist planner) were arriving from Riyadh Saturday morning at 1000. The Chinese arms dealer was arriving at noon.
The Prince gave the hotel and room where he was holding his meetings. We had guessed right. It was the same floor we were on, at the opposite end of the hall.
Robert began putting the rest of his plans together with the confirmation that the cameras and equipment that Burt had could be set up on this floor. We began trying to find a window or balcony where one of the satellites could be set up. With that small of a dish, the angle had to be perfect. The two satellite dishes had been in the materials that Ben-David had supplied. They were the best that Putin could supply the mobile Russian army with; made by Motorola in Mexico.
All of us worked following Robert and Burt’s orders placing and testing the equipment. We worked four hours then split into shifts for rest and duty monitoring the floor and outside. Someone went to the lobby and outside every hour. Rarely was there anyone at the lobby check-in counter during the day and never after 1600.
I made the last call of the day to my mates. Then I did my four hour stint; Andy and the Mossad ladies refused to allow me to go outside. When they went they always had a male with them as was the custom in this part of the world.
It was a long night and when my four hours was up I slept like a baby. I was awakened at 0600 by the ringing of Andy’s satellite phone. The safari hunting groups four and five leaders had left camp at that time saying they had an important meeting to attend.
The leaders had tried for an hour before they left to contact hunting safari groups one and two. The theory was that there were problems with the radio equipment, maybe it had gotten wet.
On my orders Andy sent instructions to Bruce Sloane and Jerry Christopher – the team leaders for teams three and four – ordering them to kill the hunting scouts and guides at noon and feed the gators, burn all their equipment and then come back to Polokwane in the Land Rovers by 1400 and stay out of sight of the airport unless called. That was two more groups taken care of.
The same scenario played out with teams five and six. The two leaders left for the airport to meet the Prince leaving the scouts and guides with my men. Andy gave them the same orders.
The next orders went to the men with Burt “As soon as the Prince comes into the hotel and into the room, send half of your men to the fifth floor to our rooms for backup. As soon as the Chinese arms salesman gets into the hotel the rest are to come to the fifth floor but keep enough with you for security.”
Now it was the waiting game that I hated so much. A dozen hotel staff appeared for the first time in days. They cleaned the Princes rooms and vacuumed the hallway. Food, ice, beverages and table and chairs were brought in.
Andy and I along with the Mossad ladies used the commotion to venture to the lobby and back, making inquisitive conversation along the way. The cleaning crew only knew they were prepping for a VIP but did not know who. They were given strict orders that they were to finished and gone from the hotel by 0945.
Two hours later the lookouts reported that there was a plane in the air. The tower had not been in operation since we had been here. Four Range Rovers drove onto what was a first class tarmac. The drivers had the traditional greeting then a heated and agitated conversation with arms flailing and fist shaking.
The jet landed and pulled into the parking area; a big fancy and flashy Hawker jet with the Prince’s coat of arms painted on the tail. Four Range Rovers drove to the jet and waited.
It would have been nice to overhear the conversation with the four Prince’s body guards that exited the plane to greet the men. Thirty minutes later Crown Prince Sultan al-Zahab, Prince Abdulraouf al-Zahab and Abu Barazan exited the plane.
The body guards and pilots began loading the Range Rovers with suitcases from the cargo hold of the plane. The Range Rovers went to the hotel with two of his body guards and the suitcases were carried to the suite. One of the guards stayed while the other one and one of the leaders moved all the things in the safe to the suite while the Range Rovers returned to the plane.
The wireless cameras Robert and Burt had placed were working great.
The Range Rover carried the last of the individuals to the hotel. There was Crown Prince Sultan al-Zahab, Prince Abdulraouf al-Zahab and Abu Barazan, six body guards, two pilots still at the plane and the eight terrorist hunting leaders present; that made nineteen of them. It was decision time.
Edit by Alfmeister
Proof read by Bob W.