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True Stories documentary on Yorkshireman arrested for mass murder in Africa


Channel 4 will air a documentary next week about Yorkshireman, David Simpson, who was accused of the massacre of 13 gold miners in Africa.

True Stories: Safari, Witchcraft and Murder uses material, which Simpson shot while in jail and under house arrest, as well as interviews and reconstructions.

Born in Gillamoor in North Yorkshire, Simpson was set to take over the family’s pheasant farm, but instead took up a job with a safari company on a 200m hectare wilderness in the Central African Republic.

It’s a country, which has endured years of unrest, with armed rebel groups roaming the countryside, and as he started opening up the bush for big game hunters, relations between the safari company and the local population became increasingly strained, bordering on hostile.

The roads the company built were being used by local villagers to start illegal goldmines and after escalating confrontations between Simpson and the miners 13 men were founded massacred at one of the mines.

One miner claimed to have seen the 24-year-old beating the victims to death.

Simpson and his boss were arrested and thrown into jail. During the documentary he describes the terrible conditions, rough treatment from the guards and attacks from inmates.

While the investigation continued, a Human Rights Watch researcher and lawyer carried out their own report and concluded that the attack was most likely to have been carried out by a notorious Ugandan rebel group.

After 5 months in prison, the pair were placed under house arrest, but remained suspects, it took another 5 and a half months for them to be released without trial.

Simpson returned to the Central African Republic in November last year, where he continues to work for the safari company. He’s now making plans to launch an animal conservation charity.

Made by Raw, True Stories: Safari, Witchcraft and Murder will TX on 26th November on Channel 4, with a repeat on More4 on the 28th.

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