Dutch court: New appeal for alleged arms smuggler

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — The Dutch Supreme Court has overturned the acquittal of a businessman accused of supplying arms to former Liberian strongman Charles Taylor and ordered a new appeals hearing in the case.

Guus Kouwenhoven was convicted in 2006 of breaching a U.N. arms embargo by trading weapons for timber in Liberia and sentenced to eight years imprisonment.

However his conviction was overturned in 2008. Appeals judges said there was not enough reliable evidence and acquitted him of all charges.

On Tuesday the Supreme Court ordered a fresh appeal hearing. The court said prosecutors should have been allowed to present two new witnesses at the original appeal. His lawyer could not be reached for comment.

Taylor is on trial in The Hague by a special war crimes court.