Federal investigators examining the shooting death by Blackwater guards of Iraqi civilians have narrowed their focus to three men who were involved in the incident that caused great anger in Iraq. A federal grand jury is conducting the investigation and there apparently are great concerns over testimony that has already been provided the group. An ongoing issue arises from the Blackwater company use of the same lawyer being assigned the cases of more than one guard. This raises concerns about conflict of interest since client “A” might be giving information that could convict client “B.” It also brings to light an integrity issue that might hinder efforts of the grand jury to get at the truth about the shooting that resulted in the deaths of 17 Iraqis. Sources indicate that testimony of the four guards who so far have appeared before the grand jury are raising questions about the shootings which might lead to indictments being taken against at least three of the guards.
Blackwater continues muddying up the situation with its policy of allowing lawyers to handle more than a single client. The goal should be getting at the truth but this might be hampered by the current system in operation. Undoubtedly, those being charged with possible crimes are satisfied to have the company decide on legal support even though, in the long run, it might be detrimental to their own self interests.