On Friday, BuzzFeed News reported that Erik Prince, the former Navy SEAL officer and brother of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, is operating his new security firm, Frontier Services Group, in Iraq, with backing from China.
Frontier Services Group, which is based in Hong Kong and operates in Africa, China, Southeast Asia, and Dubai, has never publicly acknowledged that it had an Iraq subsidiary. But documents obtained by BuzzFeed show it is registered with Iraq’s Ministry of Trade. The firm’s largest investor is CITIC, a state-run Chinese enterprise.
Prince is best known for founding the private mercenary firm Blackwater, which was given U.S. contracts to operate in Iraq in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, but was expelled after killing 14 unarmed civilians.
Prince has also faced scrutiny from special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation. He was reported to have participated in a secret meeting in the Seychelles with Kirill Dmitriev, the manager of Russia’s sovereign wealth fund and an ally of Vladimir Putin, about setting up a backchannel to the Kremlin for President Donald Trump’s administration.