Ex-Agent Going to Jail Over CIA's Rendition Program

Sabrina De Sousa faces 4 years in prison in Italy
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 21, 2017 10:03 AM CST
Ex-CIA Agent Going to Jail in Italy Over Rendition
Sabrina De Sousa in a 2012 file photo.   (Nikki Kahn/The Washington Post via AP, File)

A Portuguese court has ordered police to extradite a former CIA agent to Italy, where she's due to serve a four-year prison sentence after being convicted of involvement in a US program that kidnapped suspects for interrogation. Police took Sabrina De Sousa to a Portuguese jail, where she's awaiting extradition within the week, reports the AP. De Sousa was among 26 Americans convicted for kidnapping suspect Osama Moustafa Hassan Nasr, also known as Abu Omar, from a Milan street on Feb. 17, 2003. She denied involvement in the abduction. De Sousa is expected to be jailed immediately upon her arrival in Italy in a prison in either Rome or Milan. Once she's incarcerated, one of her attorneys said he would make a formal request for her to be granted semi-freedom and serve her sentence doing social work.

The US rendition program, under which terror suspects were kidnapped and transferred to centers for interrogation, was part of the anti-terrorism strategy of the Bush administration following the 9/11 attacks. Former President Obama ended the program years later. De Sousa lost several appeals against extradition since her arrest at Lisbon Airport in October 2015 on a European warrant. She had argued she was never officially informed of the Italian court conviction and couldn't use confidential US government information to defend herself. De Sousa, who was born in India and holds both US and Portuguese passports, has said she had been living in Portugal and intended to settle there. She was on her way to visit her elderly mother in India when she was detained. (More CIA stories.)

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