Benin judge tries to flee to United States

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Associated Press

Posted on December 2, 2013 at 9:02 AM

Updated Monday, Dec 2 at 9:34 AM

COTONOU, Benin (AP) — A judge who angered the president of the West African nation of Benin says he fled the country over the weekend and is seeking political asylum in the United States.

Angelo Houssou called The Associated Press Sunday from an airport in New York, saying he had hiked into neighboring Togo, and then waded across a river separating Togo from Ghana, where he boarded a New York-bound flight. He was told upon arrival that his visa had been revoked. He is now negotiating for asylum, saying he fears for his life in Benin.

Houssou was the judge handling two high-profile cases, including an alleged coup plot this March and an attempt to poison President Yayi Boni in 2012. Houssou ruled on May 17 that there wasn't enough evidence in either case.

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