Gaddafi sons set to appear in Libyan court
14 April 2014, 13:50
Cairo - Two sons of former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi - along with more than 30 Gaddafi-era officials - are expected to appear in court on Monday, facing charges for crimes they allegedly committed while trying to stop the uprising that ousted Gaddafi.
The 37 defendants face charges varying from murder, kidnapping, and embezzlement of public funds as well as abuses during the 2011 uprising that led to the ouster and killing of Gaddafi.
Saif al-Islam and Saadi Gaddafi and former intelligence chief Abdullah Senussi are among those on trial.
Saadi, Gaddafi's third son, was extradited earlier this month by Niger, where he sought refuge, while Saif al-Islam has been in custody since November 2011, when rebels arrested him almost a month after his father was captured and killed.
Libya has resisted pressure from The Hague-based International Criminal Court to hand over Saif al-Islam Gaddafi to be tried for crimes against humanity during the uprising. Human Rights Watch said the trial raises serious due process concerns, including the defendants' limited access to lawyers and key documents on the evidence against them.
"This case has been riddled with procedural flaws right from the beginning, which have made it grossly unfair to the defendants," said Richard Dicker, international justice director at Human Rights Watch.
"Putting Gaddafi-era officials on trial without fair trial guarantees shouldn't leave anyone satisfied that justice is being done."