Sierra Leone Rebel Convicts Sent to Rwandan Jail
Sierra Leone Rebel Convicts Sent to Rwandan Jail

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The U.N.-backed war crimes court in Sierra Leone has handed over its prison to the government, as it begins winding down its activities.

At a ceremony Monday, a court official, Acting Registrar Binta Mansaray, gave the prison keys to Sierra Leone's attorney general Abdul Serry-Kamal, who then turned them over to the country's director of prisons.

The Special Court for Sierra Leone was established to try those most responsible for atrocities committed during the country's 11-year civil war.

The court recently finished its last trials in the West African country and transferred eight convicts to a prison in Rwanda.

The court is still trying former Liberian President Charles Taylor, who is accused of supporting Sierra Leone rebels.  That trial is being held in the Hague due to security concerns.

The eight convicts transferred to Rwanda are serving sentences ranging from 15 to 52 years.  They will be housed in a facility built to hold people convicted by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.

The prisoners were moved because no prison in Sierra Leone met international standards for housing people convicted by international tribunals.