February 1, 2013
Italian Court Convicts 3 Americans in Kidnapping Case
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
A Milan appeals court on Friday vacated acquittals for a former C.I.A. station chief and two other Americans, and convicted them in absentia in the 2003 abduction of an Egyptian cleric from a Milan street as part of the C.I.A.'s extraordinary rendition program for terrorism suspects. The decision means that all 26 Americans tried in absentia for the abduction now have been found guilty. An appeals court sentenced the former C.I.A. Rome station chief, Jeffrey Castelli, to seven years, and handed sentences of six years each to Betnie Medero and Ralph Russomando. A lower court, while convicting 23 other Americans in November 2009, had acquitted those 3, citing diplomatic immunity. Italy's highest court last year upheld the convictions of the 23 other Americans in absentia in the abduction of the Egyptian, Osama Moustafa Hassan Nasr, also known as Abu Omar, on Feb. 17, 2003. Mr. Nasr was transferred to American military bases in Italy and then Germany, before being flown to Egypt, where, he says, he was tortured. He has since been released.
Chicago Tribune, via Associated Press
Osama Moustafa Hassan Nasr