RALEIGH, N.C. — The international security contractor formerly known as Blackwater has agreed to pay a $7.5 million fine to settle federal criminal charges related to arms smuggling and other crimes.
Documents unsealed Tuesday in a US district court in North Carolina said the company, now called Academi LLC, agreed to the fine as part of a deferred prosecution agreement.
The list of 17 violations includes possessing automatic weapons in the United States without registration, lying to federal firearms regulators about weapons provided to the king of Jordan, passing secret plans for armored personnel carriers to Sweden and Denmark without US government approval, and illegally shipping body armor overseas.
Federal prosecutors said the company, which has held billions in US security contracts in Iraq and Afghanistan, repeatedly flouted US laws.
‘‘Compliance with these laws is critical to the proper conduct of our defense efforts and to international diplomatic relations,’’ said Thomas G. Walker, the US attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina. ‘‘This prosecution is an important step to ensuring that our corporate citizens comply with these rules in every circumstance.’’
Blackwater was founded in 1997 by former Navy SEAL Erik Prince. The company rose to national attention after winning massive no-bid security contracts from the US government at the Iraq War’s start.
In 2010, after several high-profile controversies, the company reached a $42 million settlement with the Department of State over repeated violations of the Arms Export Control Act and the International Trafficking in Arms Regulations.