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A federal judge on Thursday reduced the sentences of three of the ex-Blackwater security contractors who opened fire in a traffic circle in Baghdad, Iraq, in 2007, killing 14 unarmed civilians and injuring 17 others.
U. s. District Judge Royce Lamberth sentenced, Paul Slough, Evan Liberty, and Dustin Heard, of up to 15 years of age, 14 years of age to 12 years and seven months, respectively. The trio had received 30-year sentences, in 2015, after being convicted the previous year on charges including voluntary manslaughter, and attempted murder. The sentences were mandatory, punishment for the committing of a criminal offence, while the use of a military weapon.
A fourth contractor, Nicholas Slatten, was convicted and sentenced to life in prison after being convicted in the same trial of first-degree murder.
EX-BLACKWATER CONTRACTOR CONVICTED AND SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON FOR THE 2007 IRAQ SHOOTINGS THAT KILLED 14
ormer Blackwater Worldwide security guards Paul Slough (Dec. 8, 2008), Nicholas Slatten (June 11th, 2014), Evan Liberty (11 June 2014) and Dustin Heard (Jan. 6, 2009).
In 2017, the court of appeal overturned the 30-year sentences for the Slough, Liberty and Heard, in answer, that the sentence was excessive and unjust, and was used by the gang members, and drug traffickers — not to the military contractors, who were deputized by the united states government. The judges will also be destroyed Slatten’s conviction and ruled that he should have been tried separately from the other three.
A SERVICE MEMBER IS KILLED DURING A MISSION IN IRAQ, THE U.S. MILITARY SAID
The men claimed that they thought they were being attacked at the moment. The shooting killed 10 men, two women, and two boys of 9 and 11 years of age. The prosecutors said Slatten, was the first of the four contractors, in order to take him out. His lawyers say that he was wrongly assumed to be a suicide car bomber was approaching the end of their convoy.
In this June 11, 2014, photo, former Blackwater Worldwide guard Nicholas Slatten leaves federal court in Washington after the start of the process. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen, File)
Slatten was convicted of in December and in his second retrial after the jury could not reach a unanimous verdict in the first of a new trial. He was again convicted and sentenced to life in prison in the last month.
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The shooting has led to tension between the united states and Iraq, and the focus of intense international monitoring of the extensive use of private military contractors in Iraq. Slatten on the team, claiming that he was prosecuted as a public scapegoat to cover for the increase in the use of private military contractors in Iraq at the time.
Fox News’ Vandana Rambaran, and The Associated Press contributed to this report.