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Raiders

 "Raider" is a general term applied to any space pirate organization (human, alien or, rarely, a mixed-species crew). Their primary targets are unarmed cargo vessels and undefended colonies. Most of their hardware is stolen, military  surplus (acquired legally or not), or bought from alien arms dealers. The ZPH 45e20, a delta winged

Death's Hand Insignia

atmospheric/orbital fighter, is a popular and inexpensive mainstay of raider fleets. Most are based out of mobile space platforms or motherships as most habitable planets near rich tradelanes are colonized. Outfitting such a venture is extremely expensive, yet the profits to be made make such a cost insignificant. Common positions within a raider group are pilots, mercenaries (for boarding actions), support staff, and a small spy network capable of lifting or hacking the secret jump routes of commercial

haulers. However, raider groups rarely have pilots and boarding troops as effectively trained as those in actual military organizations. It is a rare that a leader will arise from the ranks of a pirate band to unite several into one fighting force. Unfortunately, once a raider group gains enough power to significantly affect shipping in a given sector the local military is send to intervene with (usually) disastrous results for the raiders.

 One of the most successful raider groups was led by a man known only as Six. He commanded one of the most powerful Raider groups in the Neutral territories; owning over twenty fighters and a jump-capable mothership, Lady Fortune. Most of his armaments were bought from the Narn and his targets were centered around the major tradelanes near Epsilon Eridani. In August, 2258, fortune fell in Six's lap when he was approached  by a Centauri noble. Lord Kiro wished for his

group to steal the Centauri relic known as the Eye (worth the price of a small habitable planet) and take him "hostage." According to the Centauri fop, the Eye would soon be on the space station Babylon 5. Kiro paid well, so Six agreed. After purchasing hardware upgrades and the Lady Fortune (an investment that took five years of saving), the plan was set in motion. A small team positioned themselves on the station to steal the Eye and kidnap Kiro. As a distraction, the Raider's fighter wing attacked the station. While the station was defending itself, Six's team accomplished their mission and hijacked Kiro's transport. With the Centauri and the Eye in the Raider mothership's docking bay, the plan worked despite heavy fighter losses (eleven craft were destroyed and four were captured). Lord Kiro learned too late that instead of allowing him to leave upon final payment Six planned to ransom both Kiro and the Eye to the Centauri government. for many times more credits than Kiro had paid. Unfortunately, a Shadow Battlecruiser obliterated the Lady Fortune and recovered the Eye for a client, Londo Mollari.

 Despite the slaughter of Six's group, a new group led by Dagana Shakti emerged. Their targets were transports laden with morbidium (a vital metal used in phased plasma weapons strictly controlled by Earth Alliance). They bought shipment schedules directly from AreTech Consolidated Mining (a Martian mining company headquartered on Earth). AreTech sold out information about its shipments directly from their office on Mars. The raiders paid market price for the shipment in exchange for a ship's schedule, in turn selling for a vast profit on the black market. With the discovery of the artificial element "supermorbidium," AreTech hoped to profit from the soon-to-be useless morbidium. Shakti's organization, less its income and hunted by Earth Alliance forces, headed into Non-Aligned Territories.

IRL: Notes on the Entries

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