Liberian Ex-Leader Taylor to Serve 50-Year Prison Term in U.K.

Former Liberian President Charles Taylor is to be transferred to a U.K. prison to serve his 50-year sentence for crimes against humanity in Sierra Leone’s civil war in the 1990s.

Taylor, 65, was found guilty last year on 11 counts, including terrorism, murder, rape and using child soldiers, by the Special Court for Sierra Leone in the Netherlands. The judge at Taylor’s trial said he sold diamonds for and supplied weapons and fighters to the Revolutionary United Front rebels, who hacked off the hands and legs of civilians during the war in Sierra Leone, Liberia’s neighbor, in which 50,000 people died.

U.K. Justice Minister Jeremy Wright said in a written statement to Parliament in London today that following a request from the court, Taylor will now be moved to a prison in Britain.

“International justice is central to foreign policy,” Wright wrote. “The conviction of Charles Taylor is a landmark moment for international justice. It clearly demonstrates that those who commit atrocities will be held to account and that, no matter their position, they will not enjoy impunity.”

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