The terrorist organization called the Ten Rings was led by a man called the Mandarin. He established his presence in Afghanistan, especially the city of Gulmira. The organization had worldwide contacts in Moscow, Russia and Hong Kong.
Aldrich Killian, creator of Advance Idea Mechanics needed to cover up his experiments on Extremis, because many of the recipients were exploding. He thought of a plan to control both sides of the War on Terror by creating Extremis Soldiers for the world's governments and having his own terrorist organization as the foes. He hired the actor Trevor Slattery to pose as the "Mandarin".
Slattery was an actor from England who sought fame and fortune. Though a bit dim-witted, he loved loose women, drugs, and alcohol.
Jackson Norriss infiltrated Seagate Prison disguised as documentary film-maker to interview Trevor Slattery. On the last day of his interview, Jackson wanted to wrap out his film asking about the real Trevor Slattery, bringing him documents about his past, such as a photograph with his mother when he was a kid, and his role as a main character in a rejected TV pilot.
Norriss asked about the possibility that the Ten Rings or the Mandarin himself could be angered by his portrayal. Slattery was surprised to learn that the terrorists were real, as he previously thought that they were created by A.I.M.. While relating the history of the Mandarin, Norriss retrieved a handgun he had concealed inside his videocamera, immediately killing the prison guards. Herman, another inmate of the prison and Slattery's butler, attacked Norriss and was shot in the shoulder. Herman slammed Norris into the wall and knocked his gun to the ground. Norris kicked him in the chest and grabbed a baton from one of the tripod legs. Norriss hit Herman in the head several times until he fell to the floor and stabbed him in the neck with a pen.
Slattery picked up one of the guns from the dead guard, and was able to hold Norriss at gunpoint before Norriss used his training to disarm him and aim the gun at Slattery's head. Norriss revealed that he was sent to break Slattery out of prison and take him to the real Mandarin, who Slattery still seemed to struggle to believe was real.