News / Africa

Former Special Court Prosecutor Once Considered Indicting Gadhafi

Multimedia

Audio
Joe DeCapua

The former chief prosecutor for the U.N.-backed Special Court in Sierra Leone says he once considered indicting Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi.

David Crane, who’s now a law professor at Syracuse University, is the man who signed the war crimes indictment against former Liberian president Charles Taylor.  He says evidence showed Col. Gadhafi’s involvement in West African turmoil in the 1990s.

“Involvement of Moammar Gadhafi in the affairs of sub-Saharan Africa are well known,” he says, “Moammar Gadhafi was a center point in the West African joint criminal enterprise that was essentially the blood diamond story and had a direct involvement in the tragedy that was the civil war in Sierra Leone.

What investigators found

Crane says, “He had a geo-political plan to place surrogates in various countries in West Africa, starting with Burkina Faso, then Liberia, followed by Sierra Leone, then Cote d’Ivoire, Guinea, Gambia and Senegal.”

Crane began work as chief prosecutor in 2002.

“We realized very quickly that Moammar Gadhafi was involved in setting up and creating the conditions by which the Sierra Leonean civil war kicked off in March of 1991.”

He says unraveling the evidence found that “both Moammar Gadhafi, [and] Blaise Campaore, the current president of Burkina Faso, as well as then-president Charles Taylor, were very much involved in this joint criminal enterprise to move guns, diamonds, gold and timber about and using diamonds as a basis by which they were able to create cash to buy guns to further their rebellions in West Africa.”

Indicting Gadhafi?

“I considered indicting Moammar Gadhafi, but again, there were several challenges, one of which was political.  But also there was some evidentiary challenges,” he says, adding, “In paragraph 17 of Charles Taylor’s indictment, we name and shame Moammar Gadhafi as an unindicted coconspirator.”

Crane denies suggestions that some countries pressured him not to indict Gadhafi.

“That is just not true.  I received no political pressure regarding any of the cases that I ran.”

Would Crane like to see Gadhafi indicted, possibly by the International Criminal Court?

“I think a careful look should be given by the International Criminal Court as to what he is allegedly doing to his own people during this particular rebellion.  And if the facts show he’s committed international crimes that justice be done,” says Crane.

You May Like

EU Court Fines Poland for Hosting CIA 'Black Sites'

Ruling is first time a court has acknowledged suspects were held and tortured at the sites, under US program launched following the 9/11 terrorist attacks More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

Video At AIDS Conference, Prevention Pill Stirs Excitement

Truveda shows promise, spurring debate over access and other approaches More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnelsi
X
July 24, 2014 4:42 AM
The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video MH17's 'Black Boxes' Could Reveal Crash Details

The government of Malaysia now has custody of the cockpit voice and flight data recorders from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, which was hit by a missile over Ukraine before crashing last week. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports, the so-called black boxes may hold information about the final minutes of the flight.
Video

Video Living in the Shadows Panel Discussion

Following a screening of the new VOA documentary, "AIDS - Living in the Shadows," at the World AIDS conference in Melbourne, a panel discussed the film and how to combat the stigma associated with HIV/AIDS.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video US Awards Medal of Honor for Heroics in Bloodiest of Afghan Battles

U.S. combat troops are withdrawing from Afghanistan, on pace to leave the country by the end of this year. But on Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama took time to honor a soldier whose actions while under fire in Afghanistan earned him the Medal of Honor. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid