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19 Jul 2011

Mike Scarcella, Blog of the Legal Times

D.C. Circuit Refuses To Rehear Blackwater Manslaughter Case [USA]

The full U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit...said it will not review a panel's decision to revive the prosecution of former Blackwater private security guards charged in the shooting deaths of Iraqi civilians in 2007. The nine active judges of the court issued an order today, without comment, unanimously rejecting the request from the guards that the full court review and overturn a three-judge panel decision in April. The panel decision remanded the case back to Washington federal district court for further proceedings. The panel ruling reversed U.S. District Judge Ricardo Urbina’s decision in December 2009 to dismiss the indictment. Urbina concluded the government, in building its case, improperly used compelled statements the guards made in the hours and days after the fatal shooting in Baghdad. The judge said the indictment itself was tainted...The guards were indicted in Washington federal district court in December 2008. The guards claim they acted in self-defense in the shooting, which left 34 civilians dead or wounded.