Raleigh (US): The US prosecution of five former employees of private security firm Blackwater has collapsed after the defendants said they were acting at the direction of the CIA to provide five automatic rifles as gifts to King Abdullah of Jordan.
Federal prosecutors had indicted former Blackwater president Gary Jackson and four others on a long list of felony firearms violations in 2010. But charges against three of them were dropped yesterday.
Jackson and former company vice-president William Matthews pleaded guilty to misdemeanour charges related to record-keeping violations, resulting in USD 5,000 fines and no jail time.
The government`s case crumbled after defence lawyers produced two retired CIA officials who said they knew about the weapons presented to Abdullah during a visit to Blackwater`s compound in North Carolina.