Blackwater guards ignored orders before Iraqi civilian killings: US lawsuit Melissa Bancroft at 7:17 PM ET
[JURIST] Blackwater security contractors who were involved in the September 16 shooting [JURIST report] of Iraqi civilians ignored a direct order from Blackwater and US State Department personnel prior to the shooting incident, according to an amended complaint [PDF text; press release] filed in US federal court Monday on behalf of several of the victims. The lawsuit [JURIST report] was brought by the New York-based Center for Constitutional Rights, which said Tuesday that the amended complaint alleges that:
Blackwater personnel who fired on the innocent civilians had ignored directives from the Tactical Operations Center ("TOC"), which was manned by both Blackwater and Department of State personnel, to stay in another area with State Department personnel they had dropped off until further instructed to leave the area.
The complaint also alleges that:
Blackwater routinely deploys heavily-armed "shooters" in the streets of Baghdad with the knowledge that up to 25 percent of them are chemically influenced by steroids or other judgment-altering substances, and fails to take effective steps to stop and test for drug use.
The allegations against Blackwater [corporate website; JURIST news archive] have caused domestic outrage in Iraq and have prompted legal controversy in the US.
Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible, ad-free format.