Volume 101 - Issue 5 Georgetown Law Journal

James Bond, Inc.: Private Contractors and Covert Action

This Note addresses the challenges and options arising from private contracting of U.S. government covert activities. I argue that, because of the difficulty of remedying ex post facto problems with these contracts, the government must limit the contracting out of such functions in the first place. Part I analyzes the restrictions in U.S. law that apply to contractor performance of covert action, as well as the benefits and risks of such involvement. Part II discusses the implications for contractor immunity when things go wrong under contracts of this type and the challenges of enforcing the legal restrictions. Part III proposes solutions for a better covert action contracting policy.

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