Charles Taylor Gets 50 Years

    Liberian ex-president Charles Taylor, accused of arming Sierra Leone's rebels who paid him in "blood diamonds", listens to the judge at the opening of the sentencing judgement hearing at the court in Leidschendam, near The Hague, on 30 May 2012. Former Liberian president Charles Taylor will be sentenced for war crimes by a UN court on May 30, 2012 after being convicted for arming Sierra Leone rebels in return for "blood diamonds".  Special Court for Sierra Leone judge Richard Lussick will deliver the ruling at a hearing due to start at 0900 GMT, the first sentence against a former head of state at an international court since the Nazi trials at Nuremberg in 1946. AFP PHOTO  ANP / POOL/ TOUSSAINT KLUITERS        (Photo credit should read TOUSSAINT KLUITERS/AFP/GettyImages)

    Toussaint Kluiters, AFP / Getty Images

    The International Criminal Court at The Hague on Wednesday sentenced former Liberian President Charles Taylor to 50 years in prison for aiding and abetting rebels in neighboring Sierra Leone in return for blood diamonds. In the ruling, presiding Judge Richard Lussaick said Taylor is “in a class of his own” when compared with others convicted by the United Nations–backed court, and that Taylor was responsible for “some of the most heinous and brutal crimes in recorded human history.” Taylor, 64, is the first head of state to be convicted for international war crimes since World War II. More than 50,000 people died in the decades-long Sierra Leone civil war.

    For “heinous and brutal crimes.”
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