Jean-Baptiste Mugimba

12.07.2016 ( Last modified: 16.08.2016 )
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facts

Jean-Baptiste Mugimba was born in 1956 in Mutura commune, Rwanda. He is a former employee of the National Bank of Rwanda. He is married and has three children.

Mugimba is believed to have been the secretary-general in the Coalition for the Defence of the Republic, a Hutu extremist party accused of planning and executing the genocide against the Tutsis in 1994. He allegedly participated in the planning, preparation and execution of the killing and seriously wounding of Tutsis in the communes of Nyamirambo and Nyarugenge, the secteurs Nyakabanda, Kimisagara, Biryogo and other parts of Kigali. He has furthermore been said to have spread the genocidal ideology and therefore to have incited the population to commit genocide.

On 8 April 1994, Mugimba reportedly hold a meeting on genocide planning at his home in Nyakabanda, on the outskirts of Kigali. During that meeting, he was allegedly involved in the drafting of lists of Tutsis living in Nyakabanda which were later given to the Interahamwe militias. He has furthermore been said to have decided which roadblocks needed to be erected, and to have requested weapons to distribute to Interahamwe militias. On that same day, he was reportedly also involved in the killing of a former Tutsi colleague.

Mugimba was reporteldy involved in numerous attacks on Tutsis in the commune of Nyarugenge, the secteurs of Nyamirambo, Kimisigara, Biryogo, Nyakabanda, and other parts of Kigali. He allegedly participated in an attack in which three girls were abducted and killed, and in an attack on the offices of the Red Cross in Nyakabanda in which many Tutsis were killed.

He fled to the Netherlands in 1999, where he was reunited with his family which was already living there.

On 23 January 2014, Mugimba was arrested at his home in Leusden pursuant to an arrest warrant issued by Rwanda on 22 November 2012.

LEGAL PROCEDURE

On 23 January 2014, Mugimba was arrested at his home in Leusden pursuant to an arrest warrant issued by Rwanda on 22 November 2012. Mugimba has been accused by Rwanda of conspiracy to commit genocide, complicity in genocide, direct and public incitement to commit genocide, murder and extermination as crimes against humanity, war crimes and formation, membership, leadership and participation in an association of a criminal gang whose purpose and existence is to do harm to people or their property, committed in the period between 7 April 1994 and 14 July 1994.

In June 2013, the Dutch Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND) had already ordered the withdrawal of his residence permit on grounds that there were serious reasons for considering that he was involved in the genocide in Rwanda in 1994.

The proceedings before the District Court in the Hague on the request of extradition began on 23 June 2014. On 11 July 2014, the District Court in The Hague granted the request for extradition, dismissing Mugimba’s claims that if extradited he would not receive a fair trial.

Mugimba appealed the decision before the Dutch Supreme Court and on 16 December 2014, the Supreme Court upheld the District Court’s decision. The Dutch Supreme Court dismissed his claim that genocide was not criminalized in 1994 on the basis that both Rwanda and the Netherlands had ratified the Genocide Convention at the time the events occurred.

On 2 January 2015 Mugimba appealed to the Dutch Minister of Security and Justice to dismiss the request for extradition. However, by virtue of a decision of 3 June 2015, the Minister granted the extradition of Mugimba in accordance with the decision of the District Court in The Hague.

On 13 November 2015 Mugimba initiated summary proceedings against the Dutch state in order to block his extradition to Rwanda. On 27 November 2015, the District Court in The Hague ruled in favour of Mugimba, affirming that his right to a fair trial could not be guaranteed and that he could therefore not be extradited.

On 18 December 2015 the Dutch government appealed the decision of the District Court in The Hague.

On 5 July 2016, the Court of Appeal in The Hague overturned the first instance decision, ruling that there were no indications that Mugimba’s defence in Rwanda would be inadequate as to amount to a flagrant breach of his right to a fair trial.

Mugimba’s counsel lodged an application before the European Court of Human Rights and requested interim measures to block Mugimba’s extradition pending a decision of the Court.