Simon van der Linde is Papilon's primary public face and Operational Commander, dually in charge of approving and defining operations and explaining them to relevant parties. A former RSF soldier, van der Linde later became a mercenary. He participated as a combat mercenary in Africa during the 1980s, before being sent to Kuwait during Operation Desert Shield as a combat instructor. After the conclusion of his contract in Kuwait, he drifted through agencies as an instructor and advisor, before eventually being recruited by Papilon Security Consultants.

Simon was one of the earliest known contractors for the then newly formed Papilon Security Consultants in 2006, having been recruited as a contractor and combat instructor. His veterancy soon elevated his position, becoming one of two major commanders in the Brazilian Forest Seige of 2008. In 2011, as part of the company's expansion and changes, he was officially promoted to the position of Operational Commander, becoming the primary authority behind Papilon's contracts, overseeing tactical decisions alongside the Field Commanders of each region.

EspWars Papilon Simon 1976 RSF

Simon in service with the RSF in Salisbury, circa 1976