How does a CIA contractor in Afghanistan fall under U.S. jurisdiction?

A CIA contractor was recently arrested and charged with crimes in N.C. for bad stuff he did in Afghanistan. News story

From the story, I’m not clear whether it was a state charge or a federal charge. DOJ implies federal but the charges sound like state.

Regardless, why do U.S. or North Carolina laws apply in Afghanistan?

If you commit a crime in another country (murder, for example), you are subject to the laws of that country. Murder is also a crime in the U.S., and as a U.S. citizen you can be prosecuted upon your return under our laws. It’s up to the U.S. whether or not they let the guy be extradited for trial elsewhere.

It will be interesting to see whether the defense claims that contractor or his employer was encouraged to behave that way by the U.S. military…

David A. Passaro stands accused of the crimes while on a US base in Asadabad, Afghanistan, while working for the US government. Our government has privatized many of the functions of the military. In other words, we’re using mercenaries instead of our own soldiers and spies. This rent-an-iterrogator was on a military base, but wasn’t military. He worked for the CIA, but he wasn’t CIA. He was in Afghanistan, but the Afghan courts are pretty much non-existant, like the rest of the US-installed Afghan government. When a US citizen commits a crime in a lawless place while working for a US subcontractor, who tries him? We’re making it up as we go along. There will surely be more of these cases. Thousands of armed contractors are running all around Iraq and Afghanistan, with no clear lines of responsibility.

In the construction and consulting contracts I’ve worked with, there’s always a clause stating something to the effect of “this contract is entered into under the laws of [whatever state], and all disputes arising from it shall be resolved puruant to [state] law.” I know that clause is referring to civil actions, but I wonder if it could be read as covering criminal prosecution if the government is one of the parties to the contract.

Well, he wasn’t charged with murder, just assault. Which I doubt would be extraditable in general, except that he came back to the US himself.

This implies that if I punch a guy in Spain on vacation, and then come back to the US, Connecticut could charge me with assault if they found out. Is that right?