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Rwandan court upholds ‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero’s 25-year sentence

Rwandan court upholds ‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero’s 25-year sentence

CLEMENT UWIRINGIYIMANA A Rwandan appeals court upheld a 25-year jail sentence for Paul Rusesabagina, who was portrayed in the movie "Hotel Rwanda" sheltering hundreds of people during the 1994 genocide, rejecting a bid to extend it to life in prison. Rusesabagina, 67, was convicted in September on eight terrorism charges related to the activities of an organisation opposed to President Paul Kagame's rule, and is being held in a Rwandan prison. He has denied all the charges and refused to take part in the trial, which he and his supporters have denounced as a politically motivated sham. He was not…
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Appeal in ‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero’s case can proceed without him, judge rules

Appeal in ‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero’s case can proceed without him, judge rules

CLEMENT UWIRINGIYIMANA A Rwandan court ruled that an appeal by prosecutors in a case involving Paul Rusesabagina, who was portrayed in the movie 'Hotel Rwanda' sheltering hundreds of people during the 1994 genocide, could proceed in his absence. Rusesabagina, 67, was sentenced to 25 years in prison after being found guilty in September of eight terrorism charges related to the activities of an organisation opposed to President Paul Kagame's rule. He refused to take part in his trial, which was denounced by his supporters as a politically motivated sham. Public prosecutors had asked for a life sentence and had announced…
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Prosecutor seeks life sentence for convicted ‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero

Prosecutor seeks life sentence for convicted ‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero

A Rwandan prosecutor sought a life sentence for Paul Rusesabagina, who was portrayed in the movie "Hotel Rwanda" sheltering hundreds of people during the 1994 genocide, instead of an existing 25-year term. Rusesabagina, 67, was convicted in September on eight terrorism charges related to the activities of an organisation opposed to President Paul Kagame's rule and is being held in a Rwandan prison. He has denied all the charges and refused to take part in the trial, which he and his supporters denounced as a politically motivated sham. He was not in court in Kigali on Monday to hear the…
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‘Hotel Rwanda’ film hero jailed for 25 years

‘Hotel Rwanda’ film hero jailed for 25 years

CLEMENT UWIRIGIYIMANA A Rwandan court has sentenced Paul Rusesabagina, a one-time hotel manager portrayed as a hero in a Hollywood film about the 1994 genocide, to 25 years in prison after he was convicted of terrorism charges. Rusesabagina, 67, who was feted around the world after being portrayed by actor Don Cheadle in the film "Hotel Rwanda", is a vocal critic of President Paul Kagame. He denied all charges and said he was kidnapped from Dubai this year to be put on trial. His supporters called the trial a sham, and proof of Kagame's ruthless treatment of political opponents. "Rusesabagina…
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Rwandan court denies “Hotel Rwanda” hero Rusesabagina bail, extends detention

Rwandan court denies “Hotel Rwanda” hero Rusesabagina bail, extends detention

CLEMENT UWIRIGIYIMANA A Rwandan court extended the detention of "Hotel Rwanda" hero Paul Rusesabagina on Friday pending trial on terrorism charges and denied him bail, the judge hearing the case said. Rusesabagina, a political dissident who has lived in exile in Belgium and the United States, was arrested in August after returning to the country and subsequently charged with terrorism and other offences. "The fact that he is sick is not alone a ground to release him on bail," Theodosie Mukarugira said in a ruling via Skype. She said the detention would be extended by 30 days starting from Friday…
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‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero says he was duped into coming to Rwanda

‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero says he was duped into coming to Rwanda

CLEMENT UWIRINGIYIMANA PAUL Rusesabagina, depicted in a Hollywood movie as a hero who helped save Tutsis during the Rwandan genocide, said he believed he was flying to Burundi at the invitation of a pastor, but was instead lured to Rwanda and arrested on terrorism charges. Rusesabagina was speaking to the New York Times in an interview the paper said had been authorised by the Rwandan government and had taken place in the presence of government officials. The 66-year-old political dissident and former hotel manager was propelled to fame after the Oscar-nominated film "Hotel Rwanda" portrayed him using his connections with…
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‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero denied bail during terror trial

‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero denied bail during terror trial

CLEMENT UWIRIGIYIMANA PAUL Rusesabagina depicted as a hero in a Hollywood movie about Rwanda's 1994 genocide and now on trial for terrorism, has been denied bail though he had promised not to escape. Rusesabagina, who once called for armed resistance to the government in a YouTube video, was charged in a Kigali court on Monday with 13 counts including terrorism, complicity in murder and involvement with an irregular armed group. The 66-year-old former hotel manager was portrayed in the Oscar-nominated film "Hotel Rwanda" using his connections with the Hutu elite to protect Tutsis fleeing the slaughter. Rejecting Rusesabagina's bail application,…
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‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero could face maximum life in prison, prosecution says

‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero could face maximum life in prison, prosecution says

CLEMENT UWIRINGIYIMANA PAUL Rusesabagina, portrayed as a hero in a Hollywood movie about Rwanda's 1994 genocide, may face 25 years to life in prison if convicted of various offences, the prosecution said. Rusesabagina, who once called for armed resistance to the government in a YouTube video, was charged in a Kigali court on Monday with 13 counts including terrorism, complicity in murder and forming or joining an irregular armed group. "For some of the crimes, he may face 25 years, and some even go up to life imprisonment," Faustin Nkusi, spokesman of Rwanda's prosecution authority, told Reuters on phone. Rusesabagina…
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‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero appears in court on terror charges

‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero appears in court on terror charges

CLEMENT UWIRINGIYIMANA PAUL Rusesabagina, portrayed as a hero in a Hollywood movie about Rwanda's 1994 genocide, has faced 12 charges including terrorism in a Kigali court, in a case shining a spotlight on opposition to President Paul Kagame. Rusesabagina, who once called for armed resistance to the government in a YouTube video, was accused of terrorism, complicity in murder and forming or joining an irregular armed group, among the charges. The 66-year-old former hotel manager was portrayed in the Oscar-nominated film "Hotel Rwanda" using his connections with the Hutu elite to protect Tutsis fleeing the slaughter. Brought to court handcuffed…
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‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero was not kidnapped – President Kagame

‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero was not kidnapped – President Kagame

CLEMENT UWIRIGIYIMANA RWANDAN President Paul Kagame has denied that his government had kidnapped from abroad Paul Rusesabagina, whose widely acclaimed heroism inspired a Hollywood movie but who has been detained on terrorism and other charges. At a virtual news conference in the capital, Kigali, Kagame did not say exactly how Rusesabagina had been taken into custody but suggested he had been tricked into travelling to Rwanda before he was arrested. "It was not the case," Kagame said, referring to accusations of kidnapping. "There was no kidnap. There was no any wrongdoing in the process of his getting here. He got…
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