Genocidaire defence lawyer arrested on counts of bribery

BY BONNY MUKOMBOZI
NORTHERN PROVINCE 

Musanze — A legal representative to Joseph Nzirorera, in prison in Arusha, has been arrested and tried for bribing witnesses ahead of testimony.
Kanyabitaro Elias, 42 appeared in grand instance court in Musanze to answer charges of corruption.
He is reported having offered Frw20,000 to Immaculee Uwayezu who had earlier testified in Arusha on Nzirorera’s role in planning the 1994 Genocide.
Presenting during the conventional court session, the district prosecutor Aline Batsinda said that the magnitude of the case lies in mobilising and bribing a person to testify against someone like Nzirorera, who is well known for being a mastermind of the 1994 Genocide.
“It’s not a crime to testify for or against some one, as long as it comes from one’s conscience  based on the facts, but it becomes wrong when one is being influenced to do so,” Batsinda said
Kanyabitaro Elias is reportedly said to have bribed genocide survivors giving testimony in relation to Nzirorera’s role in the killings.
He denied the charges and said that he is being “hunted” for having been a friend of Nzirorera.
A resident of Musanze district, Kanyabitaro may face 10 years in jail if found guilty of the charges of corruption and related crimes.
Verdict has been postponed until August 31.

 

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