Liberian president Taylor appeals against war crimes conviction

Former Liberian president Charles Taylor is appealing against his landmark war crimes conviction and 50-year prison sentence for arming and supporting rebels in Sierra Leone’s brutal civil war.

The 64-year-old warlord turned president was found guilty in The Hague in April last year of aiding and abetting Sierra Leone rebels, becoming the first former head of state since the Second World War to be convicted by an international war-crimes court.

Taylor’s lawyers have put forward 45 different grounds of appeal against his conviction and sentence, while prosecutors are arguing that judges should have found him guilty of ordering and instigating crimes and are asking appeals judges at the Special Court for Sierra Leone to raise his sentence to 80 years.

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