Former President of FDLR, Ignace Murwanashyaka and Vice President Straton Musoni were respectively handed 13 and 8-year sentence by Stuttgart Court in Germany in 2015 accused of having issued orders to plot attacks in Northern Kivu Province between 2008 and 2009.
Murwanashyaka was found guilty of war crimes in relation to five FDLR attacks in eastern Congo and of leading a terrorist organization. Musoni was found guilty of leading a terrorist organization but acquitted of war crimes and crimes against humanity.
Germany’s Federal Court of Justice rejected an appeal by Musoni, who was given an eight-year sentence, but overturned Murwanashyaka’s conviction and sent his case back for a retrial.
At the time, the court cited legal errors in the reasoning of the original verdict that could have counted both for and against Murwanashyaka, including doubts about the war crimes conviction and whether he encouraged or facilitated attacks on villages.
The court said that section of the Stuttgart court’s verdict was contradictory in parts.
Murwanashyaka and Musoni lived in Germany where they had been granted asylum and coordinated FDLR.
They were charged with 26 crimes against humanity and 39 war crimes.
The duo was arrested in 2009 in Germany while their trial began in 2011.
Musoni was born in 1961 and settled in Germany in 1986 where he worked as a computer specialist.
Musoni is set to return to Rwanda while his boss Murwanashyaka died in prison in 2019 before completing his sentence.