LEIDSCHENDAM, Netherlands -- Former Liberian President Charles Taylor has appealed his war crimes and crimes against humanity convictions and his 50-year sentence, calling them a miscarriage of justice.

Prosecutors on Thursday also appealed the Special Court for Sierra Leone's decision to acquit Taylor on more serious charges and urged judges to increase his sentence to 80 years.

Taylor, 64, became the first former head of state since World War II to be convicted by an international war crimes court when he was found guilty in April of aiding and abetting murderous rebels during Sierra Leone's bloody civil war.

He was cleared of directly ordering atrocities such as massacres and mutilations carried out by the rebels.

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  • Slobodan Milosevic

    <em>This Tuesday Dec. 11, 2001 file photo shows Slobodan Milosevic, center, as he enters the courtroom to appear before the court of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in The Hague. (AP Photo/Paul Vreeker, Pool, File)</em><br><br> The trial of the former Yugoslav President on charges of masterminding Serb atrocities throughout the wars that tore apart the Balkans in the 1990s dragged on for four years and was eventually aborted without verdicts when he died of a heart attack in his jail cell in 2006. The trial was repeatedly delayed by Milosevic's ill health and propensity for grandstanding in court.

  • Charles Taylor

    <em>In this Aug. 11, 2003 file photo, Liberian ex-President Charles Taylor, carrying his staff, leaves with wife Jewel Howard-Taylor after officially handing over the power of the presidency to his Vice President Moses Blah, at the Executive Mansion in the Liberian capital Monrovia. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis, File)</em><br><br> The former Liberian President fired his legal team and boycotted the start of a trial at the Special Court for Sierra Leone in June 2007, claiming he did not have the resources to properly defend himself. The trial got under way again in January 2008 when the first witness testified. Taylor was convicted last month of aiding and abetting murderous rebels in Sierra Leone's civil war. He will be sentenced May 30.

  • Radovan Karadzic

    <em>A file photo taken on August 29, 2008 shows Bosnian Serb wartime leader Radovan Karadzic at the UN International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague. (VALERIE KUYPERS/AFP/Getty Images)</em><br><br> The former Bosnian Serb leader also boycotted the opening of his war crimes trial in October 2009 claiming he did not have enough time to prepare his defense. Judges later ruled that Karadzic had "substantially and persistently obstructed the proper and expeditious conduct of his trial." The first witness finally testified on April 13, 2010. Prosecutors recently finished calling witnesses and Karadzic will begin presenting his defense in October.

  • Vojislav Seselj

    <em>A picture shows ripped pre-election posters of Vojislav Seselj, currently on trial in The Hague for war crimes, leader of the hard-line nationalist Serbian Radical Party, and his deputy Tomislav Nikolic and Serbian Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica (C) in Belgrade on May 11, 2008. (DIMITAR DILKOFF/AFP/Getty Images) </em><br><br> The Serb ultranationalist has repeatedly delayed his case. His trial began in November 2006 in his absence because he was on hunger strike. The court then called for a fresh start after allowing Seselj to represent himself. The trial started again in November 2007 but was halted again in February 2009 amid allegations of witness intimidation by Seselj. The trial finally resumed in January 2010 and judges are still considering their verdicts - more than nine years after Seselj surrendered to the court.

  • Thomas Lubanga

    <em>Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga, center, awaits his verdict in the courtroom of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague, Netherlands, Wednesday, March 14, 2012. Judges have convicted a Congolese warlord of snatching children from the street and turning them into killers. (AP Photo/Evert-Jan Daniels, Pool)</em><br><br> The Congolese warlord was the first suspect to go on trial at the International Criminal Court. His case on charges of recruiting and using child soldiers was twice halted due to prosecutors not disclosing parts of their evidence against him. He was convicted in March, some six years after he was sent to the court and will be sentenced later this year.

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