Prince is a U.S. citizen, and State Department arms trading rules generally require Americans who broker foreign defence service deals to obtain licenses and get advance approval. But there are exemptions, especially if the brokering is done with the authorisation of other agencies, such as the CIA or Pentagon. The State Department said it does not release information about specific licences or approvals. A Department of Defense spokesman, Major James B. Brindle, emailed a statement to BuzzFeed News, saying: “We are aware of the reports. We have nothing to add, and direct you to the Government of Nigeria for queries relating to their possible use of security contractors.” The CIA, which has clashed with Prince in the past, declined to comment.