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ICTR sentences former deputy prosecutor to life imprisonment for genocide

[JURIST] Former Rwandan deputy state prosecutor Siméon Nchamihigo [TrialWatch profile] was sentenced to life imprisonment Wednesday by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) [official website; JURIST news archive]. Nchamihigo was charged with four counts of genocide, murder, extermination, and other crimes against humanity. According to an amended indictment [text, PDF], Nchamihigo ordered an accomplice to kill a Tutsi victim by lighting a mattress on fire, and ordered the same person to kill a Tutsi family by lighting their car on fire. Other allegations, contained in the amended indictment and the original indictment [PDF text] filed in 2001, allege that Nchamihigo ordered the deaths of other Tutsis and drafted a list of opposition leaders to be murdered. After the 1994 Rwandan genocide [BBC backgrounder], Nchamihigo worked as an investigator for the ICTR under an assumed name. BBC News has more. AFP has additional coverage.

In 2006, the ICTR settled [JURIST report] a dispute with the Rwandan government [JURIST report] over the hiring of employees having connections with the 1994 genocide [BBC backgrounder] by agreeing to run more background checks. Nchamihigo was taken into custody by court security staff in 2001 while working as an investigator [Dowjones report] for the legal team defending former Rwandan army officer Samuel Imanishimwe.

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