Charles Taylor Gets 50 Years

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.