This case summary is part of a collection of summaries describing the cases before the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR). See the Online Resource Hub pages on the ICTR and International Criminal Law, and table of ICTR case summaries for additional information.


Muvunyi (ICTR-00-55A)

First Trial Judgment: 12 September 2006; First Appeal Judgment: 29 August 2008; Second Trial Judgment: 11 February 2010; Second Appeal Judgment: 1 April 2011

Tharcisse Muvunyi, a former Lieutenant Colonel in the Rwandan Army and a Commander of the military school École des Sous-Officiers, stood trial for his role in crimes committed by his subordinates and for statements made at a public meeting at the Gikore Trade Centre in Nyaruhengeri commune that led to violence against Tutsis. The prosecution charged Muvunyi with direct and superior responsibility for genocide and complicity in genocide; direct responsibility for incitement to commit genocide; and superior responsibility for rape and other inhumane acts as crimes against humanity.

In 2006, a, ICTR Trial Chamber convicted Muvunyi of genocide, incitement to genocide, and other inhumane acts as a crime against humanity. In 2008, the ICTR Appeals Chamber set aside all of Muvunyi’s convictions and ordered a retrial on the single count of incitement to commit genocide after finding defects in the indictment with respect to the other charges.

In 2010, an ICTR Trial Chamber convicted Muvunyi for incitement to commit genocide for using coded language that called for the extermination of the Tutsis the Gikore Trade Centre. In 2011, the Appeals Chamber rejected both parties’ appeals and upheld the Trial Chamber’s sentence of 15 years’ imprisonment.