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Haiti. Assassination of President Jovenel Moise. His wife, Martine, was charged with complicity

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Martine Moise, the wife of Haitian President Jovenel Moise, who was murdered in 2021, was among those accused of complicity in his murder. The indictment stated that Moise conspired, among others, with the former prime minister to take power in the country.

The Haitian portal AyiboPost has obtained a 122-page indictment regarding the murder of Haitian President Jovenel Moise. The document, described by the media on Tuesday, shows that charges were brought against 51 people, including the politician’s wife, Martine Moise.

Jovenel Moise, who had been president of Haiti since 2017, was assassinated in July 2021 at the age of 53. A group of perpetrators, mainly Colombians, she broke into his residence on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince at night and shot him. The then first lady was also injured in the attack. Martine Moise was left in a serious condition transported by helicopter to hospital in Florida.

SEE ALSO: Report: Haitian gangs derive steady income from extortion, kidnapping and organ trafficking

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Indictment following the assassination of the president of Haiti

As described by the New York Times, Moise was charged with conspiracy to commit murder. In the indictment, Judge Walther Voltaire, who is handling the case, does not provide any direct evidence of her involvement in her husband’s murder, but refers to the testimony of witnesses that are intended to incriminate the president’s widow, including the testimony of one of the main suspects in the case. This is Joseph Badio, a former official from the Ministry of Justice, who is accused of being one of the organizers of the attack. He testified that Moise conspired with others, including then-Prime Minister Claude Joseph, in a coup to get rid of her husband, take over as president and “monopolyze power.” Joseph faced the same charge as the former first lady.

The document also referred to the testimony of Lyonel Valbrun, then secretary at the president’s official residence. He said that two days before the attack, Moise arrived at the residence and spent several hours getting rid of various items. He suggested that she knew what was about to happen there. He also admitted that she called him saying that Moise “didn’t do anything for us” as president.

The document also says that right after her husband’s murder, Moise reported that she hid under the bed to hide from the attackers. However, as noted, this space was too small for a person to fit under it, which raises doubts about the credibility of this testimony.

So far, Moise or her representatives have not commented on the allegations. Former Prime Minister Joseph said in a statement to the Miami Herald that both he and Moise were targeted by the country’s current Prime Minister Ariel Henry, who was the “main beneficiary” of President Moise’s murder. Henry became Prime Minister shortly after his death and remains in power today. However, he was not on the list of accused persons.

SEE ALSO: Gangs paralyze the capital of Haiti. Barricades are burning, residents are trapped in their homes

Difficult situation in Haiti

The NY Times notes that despite a two-and-a-half-year investigation, the indictment still leaves many open questions. For example, it is not known what the exact motive of the attackers was or how the criminal group was financed. The Americans also initiated a separate investigation into the case. As a result, 11 people were accused of conspiring to kill the president, six of whom pleaded guilty, and the others are awaiting their trials in Florida.

After the death of President Moise, Haiti plunged into chaos and violence, the country is controlled by gangs. According to a new UN report, every day they are gaining a stronger economic position thanks to abductions and extortion of ransom. Currently, Haiti does not have a president. Prime Minister Henry maintains that it is impossible to organize new ones elections at a time when criminal groups rule the country.

New York Times, Washington Post, BBC

Main photo source: EVA MARIE UZCATEGUI / Reuters / Forum

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