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Blackwater Charges: 14 Counts Of Manslaughter

U.S. prosecutors say Blackwater Worldwide security guards used machine guns and grenade launchers in an attack on unarmed Iraqi civilians, some of whom had their hands up.

Prosecutors unsealed a 35-count indictment against the five guards Monday for a 2007 shooting in Baghdad. The guards surrendered in Utah, where they will argue the case should be tried.

The Justice Department charged the men with manslaughter, attempted manslaughter and using a machine gun in a crime of violence. The latter charge carries a 30-year mandatory prison sentence.

A sixth guard admitted in a plea deal to killing at least one Iraqi in the shooting.

U.S. attorney Jeffrey Taylor says the guards were authorized only to take defensive actions.

Blackwater is based in Moyock.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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