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San Diego to pay $150,000 to settle lawsuit with former Blackwater firm

The city of San Diego will pay $150,000 to settle a lawsuit brought on by an unsuccessful attempt to block the former Blackwater USA security firm from opening a local training facility.

The agreement was reached in closed session of the City Council on Dec. 2 and is set to become public at today's Council meeting.

When the controversial firm gained administrative approval to open a site, then-City Atty. Mike Aguirre said public hearings were needed on the request. The firm sued. After losing the first round, Aguirre appealed.

Rather than risk a loss at the appeals court and an order to pay Blackwater's $400,000-plus legal fees, the city decided to settle. Aguirre lost his reelection campaign in November.

Blackwater is being sued in San Diego over fatal shootings involving its personnel in Iraq. The North Carolina-based firm has changed its name to Xe.

-- Tony Perry in San Diego

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