Arusha, November 30, 2001 (FH) - Prosecution in the genocide trial of ex-Rwandan mayor Juvénal Kajelijeli on Friday asked judges of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) to take judicial notice of certain "adjudicated facts" related to the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. Prosecutor Ken Fleming of Australia urged Trial Chamber Two not to go by a recent decision of Trial Chamber One denying the Prosecutor's motion for judicial notice in the trial of Seventh Day Adventist Pastor Elizaphan Ntakirutimana and his son Gerald.

1 min 24Approximate reading time

Trial Chamber One, in denying that motion, stressed that taking judicial notice would not influence judicialeconomy as significantly as the Prosecutor had suggested. But Fleming argued that was not the main purpose of judicial notice. "The fundamental purpose of judicial notice is that it is a tool for receipt of evidence," he told the court, "not judicial economy. " Fleming also criticized several aspects of the Trial Chamber One decision. Prosecution wants the court to admit as adjudicated facts several elements from previous ICTR trials regarding the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. But Kajeilijeli's defence opposed the motion. "By pleading not guilty," argued co-counsel Nkeyi Bampaka of the Democratic Republic of Congo, "the defendant Kajelijeli refutes all elements of the accusations against him. The prosecution should now prove its case. "Kajelijeli's lead counsel Lennox Hinds of the US urged the court "as Trial Chamber One before you, and Trial Chamber Three did before, reject this distortion of rules being urged upon you by the Prosecutor". The prosecution also lost a motion in Trial Chamber Three for judicial notice in the case of former Bicumbi mayor Laurent Semanza. In a decision of November 3rd last year, that Chamber took judicial notice of "facts and documents" submitted by the Prosecutor but denied her requests to "create evidentiary presumptions on the basis of the facts" and "to take judicialnotice of inferences that may be drawn from the judicially noticed facts". Trial Chamber Two is composed of judges William Hussein Sekule of Tanzania (presiding), Winston Churchill Matanzima Maqutu of Lesotho and Arlette Ramaroson of Madagascar. The same court last week heard a Prosecutor's motion for judicial notice in the case of six ex-leaders accused of genocide in the southern Rwandan region of Butare. GG/JC/DO/FH (KJ1126f)