Denmark extradition trial: 25 pin Genocide suspect Twagirayezu

Court in the Danish town of Hillerød on Wednesday continued with the hearing of Wenceslas Twangirayezu a Genocide suspect who faces extradition from the Nordic country to Rwanda to answer the charges he stands accused.

Court in the Danish town of Hillerød on Wednesday continued with the hearing of Wenceslas Twangirayezu a Genocide suspect who faces extradition from the Nordic country to Rwanda to answer the charges he stands accused.

Addressing the courtroom, a Danish prosecutor said that there was a strong case against the accused and that 25 witnesses have been lined up to pin him on genocide crimes he committed in the former Gisenyi Prefecture.

According to sources in Denmark who attended the hearing, Twagirayezu denied the charges and maintains that it is a case of mistaken identity.

During the Genocide, Twagirayezu, 49, was the regional leader of CDR, an extremist party in the former Gacurabwenge Sector in the current Rubavu District.

CDR formed the core of the architects of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

Twagirayezu, who apparently runs an organisation in Denmark called Dutabarane Foundation, was a teacher at a school called Majambere Primary School in Busasamana Sector of the current Rubavu District.

The suspect, an IT specialist, was arrested in the Danish capital Denmark in May last year and has since been in custody.

Specifically, Danish prosecution pins the accused on having been part of a gang of some 200 militiamen that attacked on former Mudende University where over 1,000 people – mainly students, lecturers and other staff – were killed.

During interviews with survivors last year, The New Times established one of the attacks in which Twagirayezu was among the ringleaders was carried out at Mudende University in the present Rubavu District.

However in mitigation, Twagirayezu said he was not in the area on the particular date the attacks that he was part of were where allegedly made, saying he had crossed over to nearby Masisi in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Prosecution wondered how Twagirayezu could remember in specific detail where he was on the specific dates of the attack yet he had failed total ignorance on same just last year, when he was first arraigned before court.

He is accused of six crimes, including participation in the attack on Mudende University and the killing of two women and a man at a roadblock.

Legal experts have previously said that the extradition of Twagirayezu is likely to be easier due to a precedence that was set when the Danish authorities extradited Emmanuel Mbarushimana in 2014 over the same Genocide crimes.

Mbarushimana was tried by the specialized Chamber of the High Court (International Crimes) and was last month sentenced to life.

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