Blackwater CEO accused of killing witnesses


The lawsuit filed by Iraqis against the US contractor Blackwater takes turn with a former employee and a former US marine accusing the firm’s owner of murder.

In sworn statements filed on August 3 in federal court in the Eastern District of Virginia, the two testified that company owner and CEO Erik Prince may have murdered or arranged the murder of individuals cooperating with US federal authorities investigating the case.

“[Prince] views himself as a Christian crusader tasked with eliminating Muslims and the Islamic faith from the globe,” the former employee — referred to as “John Doe 2” — alleges in his statement.

“[Prince’s] companies encouraged and rewarded the destruction of Iraqi life,” he adds.

Both men, whose identities were not disclosed for fear of their safety, allege that Blackwater was smuggling weapons into Iraq, One of them even claims that Prince profited from the “illegal” or “unlawful” transfer of weapons into Iraq on his private planes.

In two separate five-page declarations concerning Blackwater, which now operates under the Xe Services LLC, they also charge that Prince and other Blackwater executives destroyed videos, emails and other documents that were proof of their guilt and intentionally deceived the US State Department and other federal agencies.

These and other allegations, make up a seventy-page motion that consists of a series of sworn affidavits given under penalty of perjury.

The motion was filed by lawyers on behalf of Iraqi civilians suing Blackwater for alleged war crimes and other misconduct.

Blackwater lawyers insist that Prince and the company are innocent of any wrongdoing. The company spokespersons, however, refuse to comment to the media.

According to a source close to the case, John Doe 2 is a former member of Blackwater’s management team. Based on his own testimony, he worked with the company for four years.

“It appears that Mr. Prince and his employees murdered, or had murdered, one or more persons who have provided information, or who were planning to provide information, to the federal authorities about the ongoing criminal conduct,” says John Doe 2, citing information provided to him by former colleagues.

“I fear violence against me in retaliation for submitting this Declaration… On several occasions after my departure from Mr. Prince’s employ, Mr. Prince’s management has personally threatened me with death and violence,” he adds.

Referred to as “John Doe 1”, the former US marine who worked for Blackwater in Iraq also made a similar statement.

“I learned from my Blackwater colleagues and former colleagues that one or more persons who have provided information, or who were planning to provide information about Erik Prince and Blackwater have been killed in suspicious circumstances,” he said.

The US Attorney’s office in the District of Columbia has refused to comment on the case, citing legal restrictions.

US Federal prosecutors convened a grand jury in the aftermath of the September 16, 2007, Nisour Square shootings in Baghdad, where seventeen Iraqis lost their lives.

Five Blackwater employees are waiting to face trial on several manslaughter charges and a sixth, Jeremy Ridgeway, has already pleaded guilty to manslaughter and attempted manslaughter.

A hearing before Judge Ellis in the civil cases against Blackwater is scheduled for August 7.

Articles by: Global Research

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