Court Upholds Conviction of Former Liberian Rebel

     CHICAGO (CN) – The 7th Circuit affirmed the conviction of a refugee who lied about his involvement with armed Liberian rebel groups.

     Prince Solomon Knox appealed the district court’s ruling, claiming he was never a member of the rebel groups National Patriotic Front of Liberia, the Independent National Patriotic Front of Liberia and the Revolutionary United Front, as the U.S. government claimed.
     But a jury believed witnesses who said Knox had brandished an AK-47 rifle while serving as a bodyguard for an RUF leader, and had bragged about being a rebel fighter and killing a family.
     Knox was convicted on four counts of lying to the government and was sentenced to a year in prison, with three years of supervised release.
     He challenged his conviction, arguing that he should have been allowed to return to West Africa to investigate and depose potential witnesses who could have backed up his story.
     Judge Tinder concluded that the evidence did not support Knox’s version, and that he was properly denied funds to travel to Africa to bolster his case.

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