Annual Report 2013
The state of the world's human rights

Press releases

19 July 2013

Former CIA agent involved in rendition must be returned to Italy to face justice

Amnesty International is calling for the return of CIA agent, Robert Seldon Lady, to Italy to face justice for his part in the US-led rendition programme.

“By his own admission, he participated in a kidnapping operation that resulted in a man being tortured. Seldon Lady evaded justice by leaving Italy before his trial. This time he should have to answer the charges against him in Italy in person,” said John Dalhuisen, Europe and Central Asia Programme Director at Amnesty International

Robert Seldon Lady, the former CIA station chief in Milan, was reportedly arrested in Panama earlier this week and is being held as a consequence of an arrest warrant issued by Italy. Italy is reportedly requesting Seldon Lady's extradition. He was tried in absentia together with 22 other CIA agents and was sentenced to nine years in jail for his involvement in the kidnapping of Egyptian cleric Abu Omar.

In February 2003 Abu Omar was abducted in Milan by Italian and US operatives. The cleric was transferred via Germany to Cairo, where he reported that he was tortured in Egyptian custody.

“Those responsible for Abu Omar’s kidnapping, which led to his rendition to Egypt where he was tortured, must be brought to justice. Seldon Lady has been found guilty in absentia in Italy for his involvement in this sordid affair,” said John Dalhuisen.

“The Italian authorities must follow up on this opportunity to bring Seldon Lady back to Italy, where he must face a new trial. Amnesty International welcomes the arrest of Robert Seldon Lady and calls on the Panamanian authorities to extradite him to Italy.”

AI Index: PRE01/358/2013
Region Europe And Central Asia
Country Italy
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