Richard Lyntton was born (Richard Bramford) in Highgate, London. He is of English descent. He attended William Ellis School, Exeter University, Moscow State Linguistic University (formerly Maurice Thorez Moscow State Pedagogical Institute of Foreign Languages), and Sandhurst. Richard served as a Captain and tank commander in the British Army in Gulf War 1; European Community Task Force Humanitarian Liaison in Russia; UNHCR Liaison Officer (when he was abducted by warring factions) and United Nations Military Observer (during heavy shelling and NATO airstrikes) in Sarajevo, Bosnia; and was a United Nations Television producer in former Yugoslavia. He was called to testify at the International War Crimes Tribunal in the Hague after witnessing and filming human rights atrocities and abuses in Bosnia. His films are archived at the Imperial War Museum, London.