ICC rejects Libya bid to try Gadhafi son

AP News

4/25/2012 12:04:41 PM - AP News

The International Criminal Court again rejected Wednesday attempts by Libya to delay handing over one of former dictator Moammar Gadhafi's sons, who is wanted for trial.

Judges unanimously dismissed Libya's latest appeal against the court's order to surrender Seif al-Islam Gadhafi for trial on charges of murdering and persecuting civilians in the early days of the uprising that toppled his father's regime last year.

Seif al-Islam was captured by rebels last year and is being held in the western town of Zintan.

Libyan authorities are resisting surrendering him, saying they want to put him on trial at home.

Wednesday's decision heaps more pressure on Tripoli to send Seif al-Islam to The Hague.

The ICC is a court of last resort for suspects accused of atrocities in countries unwilling or unable to try them. However, if Libya is to prosecute Seif al-Islam in Tripoli, it must first surrender him to the court and then apply to get him back by convincing judges in The Hague he will get a fair trial at home.

International Criminal Court Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo says his court has evidence linking Seif al-Islam to supervising and planning recruitment of mercenaries to fight last year's uprising.

"The Libyan general prosecutor has more evidence that confirms our reports and even more that links Seif to more crimes, some (where) he was involved in with his own hands as he executed people," Moreno-Ocampo told The Associated Press earlier this month on a visit to Libya.

Moammar Gadhafi also was indicted by the ICC, but he was killed by rebels who captured him last year and his case has since been dropped.

The third Libyan suspect indicted by the court, Gadhafi's former military intelligence chief Abdullah al-Senoussi, was arrested last month in Mauritania and has not yet been surrendered to the court. Libya also wants to put him on trial.