by John Grooms
The Nation is reporting today that Erik Prince, the owner of N.C.-based Blackwater, could be planning to move to the United Arab Emirates. Why? Two reasons, apparently: Nearly everyone around Prince has been indicted on various federal charges, and hes been waiting for the other shoe to drop; and the UAE, which includes Dubai, doesnt have an extradition agreement with the U.S.
The venerable magazines website reports that sources close to Prince claim the move to the UAE is seemingly all but a done deal, and points out that In April, five of Prince's top deputies were hit with a 15-count indictment by a federal Grand Jury on conspiracy, weapons and obstruction of justice charges. The accused include former Blackwater president Gary Jackson, two former VPs, and Princes former attorney. Prince has not been indicted but, obviously, his future in the U.S. doesnt look too promising.
As we wrote last week, Prince has put Blackwater up for sale, blaming his companys problems on politics, not on any actual illegal actions. Apparently, killing 17 innocent civilians at a time, violating firearms laws, and trying to hide what youre doing from the government while that same government is paying you outrageous amounts of money are all OK, but when youre caught, its because of politics.
The Nation story is a good investigative piece that taps several sources, and outlines possible charges against Prince, all of which lend credence to the talk of Prince bolting for the UAE.