Profile: One of Francois Roux's Latest to Date Mass Crimes Cases
At the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) Francois Roux -- in one of his cases -- represented Vincent Rutaganira, commune chief (Fr: 'Conseiller') of Mubuga Commune (Fr: 'secteur'), who was indicted by the ICTR on the charges of conspiracy to commit genocide (count 1), genocide (count 14), crimes against humanity (murder)(count 15), crimes against humanity (extermination)(count 16), crimes against humanity (other inhumane acts) (count 17), violation of Article 3 common to the Geneva Conventions (count 18) and serious violations of Additional Protocol II of the Geneva Conventions (count 19).
The defense counsel's work in this case had resulted in the ICTR's finding Rutaganira not guilty on 6 of the counts listed above and handed out a guilty verdict in count 16 (crimes against humanity (extermination))for "having [...] aided and abetted by omission the attacks at [...] that resulted in thousands of deaths and numerous injuries to the Tutsi refugees. [...].
Roux's client remained commune chief of Mubuga Commune during the massacre of Tutsi refugees in the Mubuga Church, alleged by the prosecution. Delivering its judgement, the court stressed that its finding of Rutaganira's guilt in aiding and abetting was predicated upon the fact that the court came to believe that "Rutaganira still wielded moral authority over the civilian population of his secteur, and that he could have used such authority to prevent certain members of the said population from participating in the massacre at Mubuga Church".
It is instructive to note that a fair amount of judicial activism helped the prosecution secure a guilty verdict in this case.