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.
Trial Judgment: 14 March 2005
Vincent Rutaganira, the former Counseiller Communal (counsellor) of Mubuga Commune Kibuye Prefecture, was indicted for allegedly failing to protect Tutsis in Kibuye despite observing attackers, including the Bourgmestre (mayors), armed civilians, commune police, and members of the national gendarmerie assemble in preparation to attack Tutsis who had taken refuge in churches across Kibuye. The prosecution charged Rutaganira with direct responsibility for conspiracy to commit genocide; genocide; crimes against humanity for acts of extermination, murder, and other inhumane acts; and war crimes for acts of violence to life.
Rutaganira pled guilty to aiding and abetting, by omission, and as an accomplice, extermination as a crime against humanity. Additionally, the prosecution requested that the Trial Chamber dismiss and the acquit Rutaganira on all remaining charges due to a lack of evidence supporting the allegations.
In 2005, an ICTR Trial Chamber affirmed the guilty plea and the prosecution’s request to dismiss the remaining charges, and the Chamber sentenced Rutaganira to six years’ imprisonment.