Charles McArthur Ghankay Taylor

Charles McArthur Ghankay Taylor

Former President (1997-2003)

Date of Birth: 28/01/1948
Place of Birth: Arthington

Education: Economics, Bentley College, Waltham, Massachusetts, 1977.

Career: National Chairman, Union of Liberian Associations; Director of Government Purchasing, 1980-83; Head of the National Patriotic Front of Liberia, 1989; President of Liberia, 1997-2003.

Commentary: Following his arrest in Nigeria in 2006, Charles Taylor quickly become a pariah in Sub-Saharan Africa (AC Vol 47, No 8, Taylor's trajectories). Indicted by the Special Court for Sierra Leone, his trial took place in the Hague rather than in Freetown because of the risk of political destabilisation in Sierra Leone and because no West African country wanted to take him in (AC Vol 41 No 13, Godfather to the rebels). He was charged with committing war crimes, crimes against humanity and violations of international humanitarian law including terrorism, murder and rape.

His trial marked the first time that an African ruler, forced from power by a combination of diplomacy and military pressure,  faced justice in an internationally recognised court. In April 2012, Taylor was found guilty and sentenced the following month to 50 years in prison (AC Vol 54 No 20, Taylor goes down alone). He appealed against the sentence and lost in October 2013. He had asked to serve out his time in Rwanda but instead was transferred to Britain, where he is likely to remain – bar any unforeseen events: in 1985, gaoled for corruption in the United States, Taylor managed to escape from the Plymouth House of Correction. He later claimed that a prison guard had left his cell door open and that he managed to return to Liberia via Mexico.

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Vol 55 N0 22


Firefighters against an inferno

The state sponsors of war and terror have been eclipsed: Gadaffi is dead, Charles Taylor is in gaol and Compaoré in exile...

Vol 55 N0 22


Stepping up the fight against Ebola

Despite the Special Court for Sierra Leone's conviction in 2012 of ex-President Charles Taylor, a lot of guilty men are still free...

Vol 55 N0 22


The warning from Ouagadougou

France, which had protected him from prosecution over his close ties with convicted war criminal Charles Taylor and the bloody insurgencies in Liberia and Sierra Leone, was reluctantly looking for a new regional ally...

Vol 55 N0 12


Koroma sacks top aide

We reported last September that Ibrahim Bah, the former warlord who worked with Liberian ex-President Charles Taylor and was under United Nations' sanctions, had brokered an introduction for France's MagForce International to Konteh, then Trade Minister (AC Vol 54 No 18, Bah reveals official links)...

Vol 55 N0 10


The men to follow Ellen

No such issues afflict Benoni Urey, who until December was subject to a United Nations' travel ban and assets freeze because of his past relationship with former President and now convicted war criminal Charles Taylor (AC Vol 43 No 9, UN gumshoes in Taylorland)...

Vol 55 N0 9


Family business under pressure

Soon after taking office in 2006, Johnson-Sirleaf promised to govern 'differently, decisively, breaking from the past', after the brutal regimes of President Charles Taylor and Samuel Doe, as well as 100 years of Americo-Liberian hegemony, when the country was dominated by a handful of families...

Vol 55 N0 7


Tight spot for Blaise

Liberia and Sierra Leone, where Compaoré backed convicted war criminal Charles Taylor and the late rebel leader Foday Sankoh, are not viable options, while Chadian ex-President Hissène Habré’s trial in Senegal shows that is not a possible destination...

Vol 55 N0 4


The price of peace

The group also had connections to the Krahn-dominated Movement for Democracy in Liberia (Model), one of the militias that fought ex-President Charles Taylor shortly before he went into exile in Nigeria...

Vol 55 N0 3


Peace process slows down

Its many Malian critics are quick to point out that the country of ancient empires is not a broken-down failed state, like Liberia after Charles Taylor...

Vol 55 N0 2


Mid-term blues

including convicted ex-President Charles Taylor’s former ally, Prince Yormie Johnson, in Nimba County...

Displaying 1-10 out of 184 results.