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Blackwater Hires Big-Name Lawyers

Posted Nov 1, 2007 5:45 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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The company whose security guards have been accused of killing 17 unarmed Iraqis has hired some big-name legal talent.

The move by Blackwater Worldwide is part of an aggressive legal and public relations campaign being waged in an effort to preserve its government contracts, the New York Times reports.

Among Blackwater’s lawyers are former White House counsel Beth Nolan and Stephen Ryan, former general counsel of the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee. In the past, lawyers who represented the company included former Whitewater independent counsel Kenneth Starr and Fred Fielding, who is currently White House counsel.

In one case, Blackwater lawyers are seeking to restrict public comments by lawyers for the families of four Blackwater employees killed in a 2004 Fallujah ambush. The men had signed confidentiality agreements, and the company argues this extends to their estates and the lawyers who represent their families.

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