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Blackwater Case Goes to Jury

  • VOA News

FILE - An Iraqi traffic policeman inspecting a car destroyed by a Blackwater security detail in al-Nisoor Square in Baghdad, Iraq, Sept. 25, 2007.

FILE - An Iraqi traffic policeman inspecting a car destroyed by a Blackwater security detail in al-Nisoor Square in Baghdad, Iraq, Sept. 25, 2007.

The case of four former Blackwater security guards charged with killing Iraqi civilians is in the hands of a federal jury in the U.S. capital, Washington, DC.

Both sides presented closing arguments Wednesday.

The four defendants allegedly killed 14 Iraqis and wounded 18 at a traffic circle in Baghdad in 2007.

The defense argued that the four shot their weapons in self defense against gunfire from insurgents. It said Iraqi police deliberately took evidence away from the scene that would prove guards were under fire.

Prosecutors say the defendants deliberately gunned down civilians trying to flee a car bomb apparently targeting a U.S. State Department official.

One of the guards is charged with first degree murder and faces life in prison. The other three are charged with manslaughter and could go to prison for at least 30 years.

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