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Colonel Merton Bell was a former tank commander who was formerly associated with the United States Army.
After leaving the army, Bell created and also led a mercenary firm, First Defense PMC, the largest in the United States before Bell himself was killed in May 2010 at the hands of his supposed second-in-command, Jason Paul Dean who was later revealed to be working for the Reynosa Cartel.
NCIS Season 7Edit
After spending two months in a Mexican prison thanks to the actions of NCIS Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs, having been jailed on illegal human trafficking charges, Bell, consumed by a strong, overwhelming desire for revenge began planning to destroy Gibbs's life.
To this end, Bell plotted with his own lawyer, Margaret Allison Hart and even secretly enlisted the help of Paloma Reynosa, who was the head of the Reynosa drug cartel aiding, Hart aiding Bell because she believed Bell was a good man while Paloma, like Bell, had a strong grudge against Gibbs because Gibbs had killed her father twenty years ago.
Prior to Patriot Down (episode), Bell decided to up his game and ordered his second-in-command, Dean to send Gibbs a message.
Dean attacked Gibbs's friend, fellow NCIS Special Agent Lara Macy and killed her by viciously slashing her throat, almost decapitating her before he lit a campfire and used the fire to leave Macy's body was left badly disfigured and so unrecognizable that it had to be identified by DNA.
Bell believed that he had personally arranged the killing but in reality, Paloma herself had secretly ordered Dean to kill Macy so that it could be a message that would strike Gibbs at the very heart. During that time, Paloma also turned Dean who now began working for her while also pretending to work for Bell, essentially resulting in Dean becoming something of a double agent.
As that happened, Bell, having finally gathered enough information headed for Mexico along with a group of his own, Bell hellbent on targeting and killing former NIS agent Michael Franks and his family, presumably as a means of exacting revenge against Gibbs and to further weaken Gibbs.
Thankfully, Gibbs alerted Mike to what was going on and as such, Mike was able to get his daughter-in-law and young grandddaughter before Mike chose to stand his ground, engaging in a vicious battle against Bell's men with Franks losing his right index finger.
In the resulting gunfight that happened between Franks and Bell's own men, several of the cartel's men later arrived, Paloma herself having sent the men with clear instructions to capture Franks so that Paloma could use Franks as leverage against Gibbs but to also kill Bell who Paloma felt had long since outlived his usefulness altogether and also due to the fault she strongly disagreed with Bell's plan of killing Franks to further cement his desire for revenge against Gibbs.
Presumably after the gunfight had ended, Dean informed Bell that Dean himself now worked for the Cartel with the two getting into an intense fight with Dean later gaining the upper hand and killing Bell by using a knife to slash Bell's throat, the impact killing Bell instantly while almost decapitating him.
Members of the Cartel themselves later disfigured Bell's remains by cutting off his head and hands, resulting in Bell being left unidentified.
They presumably left while Dean stayed behind, successfully capturing Gibbs who had arrived a few hours later.
During a conversation with Gibbs, Paloma revealed that she had originally agreed to form an alliance with Bell, all for the purpose of exacting revenge against Gibbs with Bell, according to Paloma, eager to prove himself but once they had outlived their usefulness to her, serving as a means to an end, she had ordered her men, including Dean, to kill them.
Bell's body (minus head and hands) were returned to Washington D.C. where NCIS Medical Examiner Dr. Donald Mallard performed the autopsy while NCIS Forensic Scientist Abigail Sciuto later discovered that bullets in Bell's remains were those of Gibbs's SIG-Sauer but Ducky revealed that the bullets had been delivered post-mortem as someone had in fact used Gibbs's own SIG in the hope of giving the impression that Gibbs was a murderer.
Bell's remains were later signed over to Hart who presumably had them buried.
Bell was a man in his late fifties or early sixties with short brown hair.
He also had a tattoo in the center in his chest titled "Liberty or Death".