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ICTR begins contempt trial of former defense investigator

[JURIST] Former Rwandan defense investigator Léonidas Nshogoza went on trial [ICTR press release] Monday at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) [official website]. Nshogoza was arrested in June 2007 for allegedly bribing witnesses, fabricating evidence, and "interfering with the administration of justice" in the 2004 ICTR genocide trial of Jean de Dieu Kamuhanda [TrialWatch profile; JURIST report]. Last February, he pleaded not guilty [JURIST report] to two counts of contempt and two counts of attempt to commit acts punishable as contempt of the Tribunal.

Last year, a trial witness known only as "GAA" was sentenced to nine months in prison [JURIST report] after pleading guilty to charges of giving false testimony. Kamuhanda is currently serving two life sentences [IRIN report] for genocide and extermination. The ICTR was established to try genocide suspects for crimes occurring during the 1994 Rwandan conflict [HRW backgrounder] between Hutus and Tutsis in which approximately 800,000 people, primarily Tutsis, died.

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