80 years in prison for Charles Taylor excessive, defense says

Defense lawyers for Charles Taylor have described as "vindictive" prosecutors' demands for an 80-year sentence following his convictions on 11 counts of aiding and abetting murderous rebels in Sierra Leone's civil war.

The defense team calls the prosecution sentence demand for the 64-year-old former Liberian president "manifestly disproportionate and excessive" and argues that an appropriate sentence "is not one that is simply designed to have Mr. Taylor 'put away for a long time."'

Details of the defense team's submission to judges at the Special Court for Sierra Leone were released Friday. The brief did not say what defense lawyers consider a reasonable sentence.

The brief, which will be discussed in court next week, also makes clear that Taylor intends to appeal his convictions.

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