Rage as US court bails Genocide suspect
Government has expressed concern over the release on bail of Genocide suspect Beatrice Munyenyezi, an act that is seen in Rwanda as the continuous reluctance by the west to bring to book Genocide architects.
This comes after a judge in a New Hampshire court in the US released Munyenyezi who had been waiting for her retrial in a case where she is accused of having lied about her role in the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi to obtain U.S. citizenship.
She is charged with two counts of lying on immigration documents when she applied to enter the U.S. in 1995 and to obtain her citizenship in 2003.
If the trial goes through and subsequently court convicts her, she is likely to be deported to Rwanda to face Genocide charges on which she was indicted.
Munyenyezi, who is a wife of a Genocide convict Arsene Sharlom Ntahobari, had been in custody since her arrest in June 2010.
Ntahobari, together with his mother Pauline Nyiramasuhuko, a former minister were convicted to life imprisonment by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR).
The 42 year Muyenyezi is accused of having, in complicity with her husband and mother-in-law, commanded extremist Hutu militia and ordered the rapes and killings of Tutsi in Butare, now in the Southern Province in 1994.
Reacting to her release, Prosecutor General Martin Ngoga, described the judges’ decision as implication of more violation of the Genocide offence as well as simplicity.
“The moment the jury failed to conclusively decide, the case suffered a set back. Her release is a disappointment. It is a result, among many, of what is likely to happen when Genocide cases seriously as they are, get handled by systems that take them lightly,” Ngoga said.
However, according to news agencies in the US, Munyenyezi was ordered confined to her home and must wear an electronic monitoring device.
Besides having electronic monitoring, she can have no Internet contact and her three daughters, age 17-19, must turn in any passports and travel documents they have.
Her daughters may have computers in the house but those must be equipped with monitoring software that requires a user’s fingerprint to activate.
After her release, US prosecutors said that they will bring Munyenyezi’s case to trial again in September, though they declined to comment on her release.
Munyenyezi’s case was last month declared a mistrial after judges failed to reach a consensus but US prosecutors have since appealed.
Contact email: eric.kabeera[at]newtimes.co.rw