Saturday, May 10, 2008

Blackwater Unlikely to Face Charges

The Associated Press reports that Blackwater Worldwide, the private security contractor, is not expected to face criminal charges stemming from the firefight at Nisoor Square last September.

The seven-month-old Justice Department investigation is focused on as few as three or four Blackwater guards who could be indicted in the... shootings, according to interviews with a half-dozen people close to the investigation.... Blackwater spokeswoman Anne Tyrrell said, "If it is determined that there are any individuals who need to be held accountable, we support that."

However, it appears unlikely that Blackwater, as a corporation, will be charged. "Companies are sometimes charged for the wrongdoing of their employees, but the standard is high. Prosecutors must prove that the corporation — not just the employees — intended to break the law."

In any case, "the final decision on any charges will not be made until late summer at the earliest, a law enforcement official said." So don't get too bent out of shape about rumors you hear between now and then.

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