7 February 2013

Rwanda: Munyenyezi Back in U.S. Court for Retrial

Photo: This Day
Symbol of justice.

The United States judicial authorities are today expected to begin hearing a retrial of Genocide suspect Beatrice Munyenyezi, who is alleged to have lied about her role in the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi when applying for American citizenship.

She went on trial in a New Hampshire federal court, but last year, Chief District Judge Steven McAuliffe declared a mistrial in the case after jurors told him they were at an impasse following nearly 19 hours of deliberations.

Munyenyezi is the wife of Arsene Shalom Ntahobari, a former militia leader in the genocidal regime, who, together with his mother, Pauline Nyiramasuhuko, were convicted of genocide by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR). They were sentenced to life in prison.

Reports from the US indicate that before the commencement of the retrial, Judge McAuliffe ordered both prosecution and defence lawyers not to mention the convictions of the accused's husband and his mother.

Munyenyezi is accused of manning a roadblock in the former Butare prefecture and ordered the rape and murder of Tutsis.

Prosecutors say Munyenyezi lied when she denied having a role in the killings on applications to enter the US in 1995 and to obtain citizenship in 2003.

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