2 Blackwater constructors arrested over killing Afghan civilians

Two contractors from Blackwater company and working for the U.S. Defense Department were arrested over murdering two Afghans in Kabul.

2 Blackwater constructors arrested over killing Afghan civilians

Two contractors from the private security company previously known as Blackwater Worldwide and working for the U.S. Defense Department were arrested on Thursday on charges they murdered two Afghans in Kabul and wounded a third.

Justin Cannon from Texas and Christopher Drotleff of Virginia were indicted on 13 counts for the May 5, 2009, shooting deaths of two Afghan nationals and the wounding of a third individual, the Justice Department said.

The two men were working as contractors for the Defense Department providing weapons training to the Afghan National Army. They were employed by Paravant LLC, a unit of Xe which was previously known as Blackwater Worldwide.

The indictment provided no details about the incident other than it occurred at an intersection of two roads in Kabul.

Cannon and Drotleff each faces two counts of murder, one count of attempted murder and five weapons charges, according to the indictment unsealed in federal court in Virginia.

If convicted, the two men could face the death penalty or life in prison.

The indictment follows the dismissal of manslaughter charges last week against five Blackwater security guards who were accused of killing at least 14 Iraqi civilians in Baghdad in 2007. The judge determined that the U.S. government had violated the defendants' constitutional rights.

Reuters
Last Mod: 08 Ocak 2010, 08:37
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