Ella Ide
AFP
December 15, 2010

     
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ROME (AFP) – An Italian court upped the sentences for 23 CIA agents convicted in absentia of abducting an Egyptian imam in one of the biggest cases against the US “extraordinary rendition” programme.

The 23 CIA agents, originally sentenced in November 2009 to five to eight years in prison, had their sentences increased to seven to nine years on appeal in what one of the defence lawyers described as a “shocking blow” for the US.

They were also ordered to pay 1.5 million euros (two million dollars) in damages to the imam and his wife for the 2003 abduction.

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Washington has refused to extradite the agents, who all remain at liberty but now risk arrest if they travel to Europe.

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