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     Home > Justice & Peace >  2013-08-28 18:45:01
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Appeal by Charles Taylor to be heard by the UN-backed Court next month in the Hague

The United Nations backed Special Court for Sierra Leone has said it will rule on September 26th on the appeal of former Liberian President, Charles Taylor, who is seeking to overturn his conviction to 50 years in jail. Last year, the tribunal ruled that Taylor helped to plan, aid and abet brutal crimes committed by the rebels of the Revolutionary United Front during the civil war in Sierra Leone. The court found him guilty on 11 charges, including acts of terrorism, murder, rape, sexual slavery and the use of child soldiers. Defense lawyers appealed, saying the judges had made errors during the trial, and that the sentence was too severe. Prosecutors also appealed, saying Taylor personally ordered rebels to commit crimes, and that his sentence was too light. They asked the judges to increase the sentence from 50 to 80 years in jail. Taylor was president of Liberia from 1997 to 2003, when he was forced to resign under international pressure. He was accused of giving weapons to rebels of the Revolutionary United Front, in exchange for diamonds. He was arrested in Nigeria and returned to Liberia in 2006 after which he was transferred to the Special Court at the Hague in the Netherlands.


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