The U.S. held Saeed Bakhouch at Guantánamo Bay for 20 years without charge, then sent him to have his rights violated in Algeria.

By Elise Swain, The Intercept

Former Guantanamo detainee Saeed Bakhouch was sentenced by a court in Algeria to three years in prison on terrorism charges, Bakhouch’s lawyers told the intercept.

The May 13 sentencing, on charges made under Algeria’s broad Article 87 anti-terror laws, which can carry the death penalty, came despite assurances from the U.S. State Department that he would be treated “appropriately” and “humanely” after being repatriated after his stint in Guantánamo.

Bakhouch was the most recent Guantánamo detainee to be transferred out of the military prison under the Biden administration, never having been charged with a crime. Bakhouch, his American lawyer Candace Gorman said, was a victim of torture at the hands of the U.S. and slowly deteriorated over his 20 years of arbitrary detention until his release in April 2023.

When Bakhouch first arrived in Algeria, he was immediately taken into custody by Algeria’s internal security forces — a standard and usually brief period of detention for Algerian detainees returning from Guantánamo. Bakhouch was vulnerable, Gorman said, having mentally deteriorated in recent years.

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