Iyamuremye case resumes

The High Court is today set to resume hearing in substance of a case involving Jean-Claude Iyamuremye, one of the two Genocide suspects extradited to Rwanda from he Netherlands in November last year.

The High Court is today set to resume hearing in substance of a case involving Jean-Claude Iyamuremye, one of the two Genocide suspects extradited to Rwanda from he Netherlands in November last year.

Mid-September, the suspect had sought more time to prepare his defence and his lawyer Canisius Karake sought invalidation of the ruling against his client by a Gacaca court of Niboye, Kicukiro District in November 2007, on which prosecution based to build their case.

The judgement was rendered after a trial held in absentia. But the suspect argued that it was only fair to respect his right to defence.

The hearing began on Tuesday after court dismissed defence prayer to drop the case and ordered the hearing to begin immediately.

But the defendant insisted that he was not ready to stand trial.

The presiding judge, Alice Rulisa, told defence team that there was nothing to worry about as the submissions by prosecution were the first to be heard by court.

Prosecution had asked for eight sessions to present their submissions before defence could begin to be heard by the court.

The defence team kept on insisting that they needed more time, but the judge reminded them that they had asked for this case not to last long.

After protracted arguments between the judge and the defence team, the prosecution finally started their submissions.

Iyamuremye is mainly accused of involvement in different attacks by the Interahamwe militia in the former Kicukiro commune during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

Protected witnesses said the suspect used to transport the militia in a pickup,  dropping them off at a place where they were going to kill people, armed with guns, grenades and clubs.

In the Netherlands where he had lived for 14 years, 42-year-old Iyamuremye worked as a taxi driver for the embassies of Israel and Finland before he was arrested and later extradited to Rwanda.

He was extradited together with Jean-Baptiste Mugimba, another man suspected of playing a role in the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in which over a million people were killed.

editorial@newtimes.co.rw

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