U.S. special operations forces have captured a militant in Libya who allegedly played a crucial role in a major terrorist attack against Americans in Benghazi.
President Trump on Monday identified the suspect as Mustafa al-Imam, adding the capture is proof the four Americans killed in the 2012 bloodshed “will never be forgotten.”
“Our memory is deep and our reach is long, and we will not rest in our efforts to find and bring the perpetrators of the heinous attacks in Benghazi to justice,” he said.
U.S. officials said that American forces captured al-Imam just before midnight local time Sunday in Misrata, which is on Libya’s north coast.
The Navy SEAL-led raid marked the first publicly known operation since Trump entered office to target people accused of involvement with the Benghazi attacks.
Al-Imam was taken to a Navy ship at Misrata’s port for transport by a military plane to Washington, D.C.
One U.S. official said that al-Imam is expected to arrive in America within the next two days, where he will face trial in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.
Al-Imam faces three criminal charges there were filed in March 2015 but have only recently gotten unsealed.
The suspect is charged with killing or conspiring to kill someone during an attack on a federal facility.
Al-Imam, who is a 46-year-old Libyan national, is also charged with providing support for terrorists and using a firearm in connection with a violent crime.
Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans died on Sept. 11, 2012 after militants attacked a U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi.
Republicans criticized former President Barack Obama’s administration – especially then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton – for its response to the incident.
Clinton’s handling of Benghazi became a major issue between the Democratic presidential nominee and Trump during last year’s White House race.
Obama’s administration originally described the assault as spontaneous outrage over an anti-Muslim film, only to later characterize it as a premeditated attack.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.