Germany authorities arrest former member of Gambian military for alleged crimes against humanity
© Guiliame Colin/Flickr
Germany authorities arrest former member of Gambian military for alleged crimes against humanity

German authorities on Tuesday arrested a former member of the Gambian armed forces in Hanover for his alleged crimes against humanity in the Gambia. An arrest warrant was filed for him on March 3.

The federal prosecutor’s office alleges that the accused, referred to only as Bai L., committed “crimes against humanity, murder and attempted murder.” Bai L. was allegedly a member of a patrol team, called the “Junglers,” of the Gambian military from December 2003 to December 2006. The Junglers operated under the orders of former Gambian president Yahya Jammeh to intimidate civilians, suppress political opposition and kill targets identified by him.

In December 2003, Bai L. was allegedly involved in the attempted extrajudicial killing of a lawyer in Banjul, the Gambia. According to the federal prosecuter, Bai L. “transported the other members [of the patrol team] to the scene of the attack.” The lawyer survived the attack despite the Junglers’ efforts.

In 2004, Bai L. allegedly drove a shooter through the streets of Kanifing, the Gambia, in pursuit of a journalist. The shooter in Bai L.’s vehicle shot and killed the target. He is also alleged to have transported other Junglers to a third extrajudicial killing in 2006.

The Gambia has wrestled with Jammeh’s reign. President Adama Barrow announced a truth and reparations commission in 2018 to investigate Jammeh’s crimes.

The federal prosecutor expects Bai L. to appear before a judge for the German Federal Court of Justice no later than Wednesday for further proceedings.