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Mauritania extradites Libya ex-intelligence chief

Mauritanian authorities extradited former Libyan chief of intelligence Abdullah al-Senussi to Libya on Wednesday according to Mauritania state news agencies. Al-Senussi was arrested [JURIST report] in Mauritania in March, and Libya is now seeking to try al-Senussi [BBC report] for crimes he purportedly committed while serving under former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi [BBC obituary; JURIST news archive]. Libya's National Transitional Council (NTC) [official website, in Arabic], the International Criminal Court (ICC) [official website] and France have all requested custody of al-Senussi. The ICC issued an arrest warrant [JURIST report] for al-Senussi in June 2011 on charges of murder and persecution for planning attacks on civilians during the Libya conflict [JURIST backgrounder], but he is also suspected of organizing mass rapes [JURIST report]. France requested custody because al-Senussi was sentenced to life in prison in France for his role in a 1989 plane bombing over Niger that killed 170 people, including 54 French citizens. Al-Senussi also faces charges of illegally entering Mauritania [JURIST report]. Both members of Gadaffi's "inner circle" [JURIST report], al-Senussi and Gadaffi's son Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, have now been arrested.

In November former ICC chief prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo detailed the charges [JURIST report] against al-Senussi and Saif al-Islam to the UN Security Council [official website]. Saif al-Islam was arrested in November, is currently in Libyan custody and faces trial this month [JURIST reports]. Earlier in November Ocampo said that he has evidence against Saif al-Islam for his role in planning attacks on Libyan civilians [JURIST report]. According to Ocampo, Saif al-Islam hired mercenaries to assist him in carrying out his plans to attack civilians that protested the rule of his father.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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