A Libyan-American who once lived in Northern Virginia and now commands an army vying for control of his native country has been accused in a civil lawsuit of war crimes.
The lawsuit was filed Wednesday by Libyan family members who say their loved ones were killed when forces controlled by Khalifa Hifter conducted bombings in civilian neighborhoods.
Hifter was once a lieutenant to Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi. But he defected during the 1980s and spent many years living in exile in Northern Virginia, where he became a U.S. citizen.
After the country plunged into civil war, Hifter returned to Libya. He now leads the self-styled Libyan National Army, which controls the eastern part of that north African country. He launched an effort to capture Tripoli, its capital, earlier this year.