THE HAGUE - Former Liberian President Charles Taylor was jailed for 50 years on Wednesday for helping Sierra Leonean rebels wage a savage war, receiving a precedent-setting sentence from a special war crimes court.
Taylor, the first head of state convicted by an international court since World War Two, had been found guilty of backing rebels who murdered, raped and mutilated tens of thousands of people in an 11-year war that ended in 2002.
Presiding judge Richard Lussick said there was no legal precedent by which to determine a sentence, but the term was intended to reflect Taylor's position of authority. Prosecutors had demanded 80 years.
"He was found responsible for aiding and abetting some of the most heinous and brutal crimes in recorded history," he said, reading out the sentencing.
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