Jury Convicts New Hampshire Woman For Obtaining U.S. Citizenship UnlawfullyVictims From Rwanda Testify Regarding Her Role In The 1994 Genocide
CONCORD, N.H. - A Manchester, NH woman was convicted today by a federal jury of two counts of procuring citizenship unlawfully.
A federal jury in New Hampshire found that Beatrice Munyenyezi, 43, obtained her U.S. citizenship unlawfully after fleeing her home country of Rwanda by misrepresenting material facts to U.S. Immigration authorities both before and after she arrived here. The verdict was announced today by United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz, First Assistant United States Attorney for the U.S. District of New Hampshire Donald Feith and Bruce M. Foucart, Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston.
Munyenyezi, who was charged in June 2010, faces up to 10 years in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release and a $250,000 fine on each count. Munyenyezi’s U.S. citizenship was revoked immediately upon conviction. She also faces removal proceedings after serving the sentence imposed by the judge.
Sentencing has been scheduled for June 3, 2013, at 9:30 a.m. in Concord, NH, before Judge Steven J. McAuliffe, who presided over the trial.
Testimony during the 12-day trial revealed that Munyenyezi concealed her involvement in the MRND (National Republican Movement for Democracy and Development), the political party in power before and during the Rwandan genocide. Munyenyezi misrepresented this fact in order to obtain immigration and naturalization benefits.
U.S. Attorney Ortiz said, “United States citizenship is one of our Nation’s most valued privileges. Those involved in human rights violations should be aware that the United States will not idly tolerate the abuse of its accepting borders and will diligently investigate those who obtain citizenship fraudulently, even decades after the events.”
“The United States has always welcomed refugees and those fleeing oppression, but as today’s guilty verdict clearly demonstrates, this nation will never be a safe haven for human rights violators and war criminals,” said Bruce M. Foucart, special agent in charge of HSI Boston. “After much persistence and dedication by HSI special agents and our partners at the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts, Munyenyezi will be held accountable for disguising her role as a participant in the Rwandan genocide. I am hopeful that this case will send a message to others like Munyenyezi: HSI will never allow our country to be a place where individuals seeking to distance themselves from their pasts can hide or evade detection.”
Homeland Security Investigations investigated the case with the assistance of the Department of State Diplomatic Security Service. The case is being prosecuted by Special Assistant U.S. Attorneys Aloke Chakravarty and John Capin from Ortiz’s Anti-Terrorism Unit in the District of Massachusetts.