Police officer Agasirwe’s bail denied

Police officer Agasirwe’s bail denied
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Prosecution has rejected the bail application of Nixon Agasirwe, one of the six senior police officers charged with kidnapping a former bodyguard to Rwandan President Paul Kagame.

This was on grounds that prosecutors at the Makindye based court were served late, so they need time to first study the application not later than December 18th.

Charged in the General Court Martial are: Commandant of Police Professional Standards Unit, Senior Commissioner of Police Joel Aguma; Senior Superintendent of Police Agasirwe, who is a former commander of Police Special Operations and Assistant Superintendent of Police James Magada (Crime Intelligence).

Others are Sgt Abel Tumukunde (Flying Squad), Faisal Katende (Flying Squad) and Amon Kwarisima.  Rene Rutagungira, a Rwandese national, and Bahati Mugenga Irunga, a Congolese national, were charged alongside the police officers.

It is alleged that on September 25, 2013, the accused persons kidnapped Lieutenant Joel Mutabazi, a former bodyguard of Rwandan President Paul Kagame, in Kamengo on Kampala–Masaka road and forcefully conveyed him to Rwanda.

Mutabazi was later arraigned in court, accused of terrorism, setting up an armed group, spreading rumours with the intention of inciting the public to rise up against the state, murder, crimes against the state, illegal possession of a firearm and deserting the military.

He was later sentenced to life in prison and stripped of his military ranks by the Military High court in Rwanda.

Four years later, Agasirwe is charged for the crime together with eight other officers. They have all pleaded not guilty to the charges. Agasirwe says a joint trial would be unjust for him. However, the state prosecutor Maj Raphael Mugisha asked the court to grant him leave to study the application by Agasirwe since it has been dropped on him without prior knowledge.

The nine suspects have been on remand at Makindye barracks and Luzira prison for almost a month now. The prosecution alleges that the accused are people subject to military law for using weapons (pistol and grenade) which are ordinarily a monopoly of the army according to the UPDF Act 2005.

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