Nzabonimana is charged with genocide, conspiracy to commit genocide, direct and public incitement to commit genocide, extermination and murder, as crimes against humanity.
Both parties presented their closing arguments on October 20 and 21, 2011, with prosecution requesting the court to hand down life imprisonment sentence to the defendant for his role in the 1994 Tutsi genocide.
According to the prosecution, Nzabonimana was the main instigator of the killings in his home prefecture of Gitarama, Central Rwanda. 'Nzabonimana was not a Minister in Norway or Sweden but a Minister in Rwanda. He was seen as a lion in Gitarama prefecture in 1994. He stood up and called upon the population to begin the killings against Tutsis, and his orders were carried out'', Prosecutor Paul Ng’arua submitted.
The defence, on the other hand, sought for acquittal of the accused on all counts stating that allegations against him were ‘'fabricated'' and "full of lies".
Nzabonimana's co-Defence Counsel Philippe Larochelle submitted that witnesses coming from Rwandan prisons admitted that they were persuaded to implicate authorities who were in power during the genocide in order to get a reduction of sentence.
Nzabonimana's trial opened on November 9, 2009 and was concluded on September 12, 2011. The prosecution called 20 witnesses, while the defence fielded 38. The ex-minister was arrested in Tanzania on February 18, 2008.