Col Byabagamba slapped with new charges

By IGIHE
On 10 April 2020 at 03:18

Rwanda Defense Force (RDF) has re-arraigned Col Tom Byabagamba to answer to additional charges of crimes committed during his detention.

Col Byabagamba has been slapped with new charges including corruption and attempt to escape prison.

The RDF has announced that "alleged crimes committed by Colonel Tom Byabagamba and his inside and outside accomplices are being thoroughly investigated."

Col Tom Byabagamba was apprehended on August 24th, 2014 and in March 2016, he was sentenced to 21 years of imprisonment and his military ranks were stripped off.

On December 27th, 2020, his sentence was reduced to 15 years while all his badges of honor were confiscated.

Byabagamba was initially accused of inciting insurrection or trouble amongst the population; tarnishing, as a leader, the image of the country or government; wilfully concealing objects that would facilitate the execution of a crime, and contempt of the national flag.

On April 9th, 2020, RDF issued a statement that read "The Rwanda Defence Force will arraign Colonel Tom BYABAGAMBA before military courts for additional charges committed while in detention. Col Byabagamba is suspected of criminal activities related to the attempt to commit corruption and attempt to escape from prison."

Byabagamba was apprehended and tried alongside Rtd Brig Gen Frank Rusagara and both have so far served 6 years in prison. They have recently filed an appeal with the East African Court of Justice (EACJ) as they firmly disagreed with the military court’s decision.

Attorney Michael Osundwa has stated that trial procedures were not respected for Byabagamba and Rusagara. He advanced facts that both criminals are kept in solitary confinement and that it is against international human rights.

Among other requests, Byabagamba demanded to be reinstated and given back his military ranks.

Byabagamba was apprehended and tried alongside Rtd Brig Gen Frank Rusagara and both have so far served 6 years in prison.

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