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U.S. Captures Suspected Ringleader Of Attack In Benghazi

U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, September 11, 2012

Sept. 11, 2012: The U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, was aflame after coming under attack. (AFP/Getty Images)

The United States says it has captured a militant suspected of leading the terrorist attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, said Pentagon Press Secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby.

Ahmed Abu Khattala was captured by American troops after months of planning with the FBI. Kirby said Khattala was captured on Sunday and all the U.S. personnel involved in the operation are safe.

Khattala, said Kirby, is now "in a secure location outside of Libya."

The attack on the consulate in Benghazi back on Sept. 11, 2012, left four Americans dead, including Ambassador Chris Stevens. Congressional Republicans have criticized the Obama administration over its handling of Benghazi. In May, Republicans announced they were establishing a select committee to investigate the attack.

The Washington Post, which first reported the story, quotes one U.S. official saying Khattala's capture is "a reminder that when the United States says it's going to hold someone accountable and he will face justice, this is what we mean."

The United States filed charges against Khattala last summer.

In interviews, Khattala has denied involvement in the attack, and as we've reported, he was living in the open.