French court rejects Kabuga’s appeal for bail

A court in Paris, France, on Wednesday, May 27, rejected the request by lawyers' of Genocide suspect Felicien Kabuga to release him on bail as the initial judicial process continues in France.

Kabuga again appeared in court on Wednesday, a week after his lawyers were granted more time to prepare their case.

 

Representatives of the Collectif des Parties Civiles pour le Rwanda (CPCR), which works to bring Genocide suspects in France to book, were in court.

 

They told The New Times that despite his lawyers’ protests, Kabuga will stay in prison.

 

Daphrose Mukarumongi, a CPCR co-founder, said that, among others, the court ruled that for reasons of public order, it is best he remains held at the La Santè prison in the capital.

His lawyers told the court that he is too old, and pleaded that he needs more medical examination given his age and frailty.

"His lawyer requested that more medical exams were required. But the court put this aside. The court said that the prison has ample medical expertise," Mukarumongi added. "It's funny; those who want to host him are of course, his children, who have been hiding him all along."

After his interrogation by prosecution early last week, Kabuga also made his first court appearance in the Paris Court of Appeal, on May 20.

At the time, Kabuga's lawyers indicated that they had not had enough time to prepare for his defence, hence requesting for more time.

French law allows for up to eight days in such circumstances.

The court ruled they be given more time and adjourned to May 27.

Kabuga was indicted by the now-defunct United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), in 1997.

He was indicted on seven counts of genocide, complicity in genocide, direct and public incitement to commit genocide, attempt to commit genocide, conspiracy to commit genocide, persecution and extermination, all in relation to crimes committed during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, in Rwanda.

Kabuga is expected to be transferred to the custody of the Residual Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals (RMICT), in The Hague, where he will stand trial.

jkaruhanga@newtimesrwanda.com

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