BAMAKO, Mali (AP) — Malian authorities say forces have arrested an al-Qaida-appointed judge from the Islamic tribunal that meted out harsh punishments while Timbuktu was under jihadist rule.

The government announced in a statement that Malian forces arrested Houka Houka Ag Alfousseyni on Friday in the Timbuktu region.

Ag Alfousseyni was appointed a judge by al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb when Islamic extremists seized northern Mali in 2012.

A French-led military operation launched one year ago flushed the jihadists from power though many sought refuge in the surrounding desert.

During the extremist rule in Timbuktu, Islamic Shariah law was imposed. Women were whipped for going out in public unveiled and one man was publicly executed for an alleged murder.