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Haiti Arrests Key Suspect in President Jovenel Moise’s Murder

Haitian police have arrested a former justice ministry official suspected of ordering the assassination of President Jovenel Moise.

Joseph Felix Badio was caught as he was driving out of a supermarket car park in the capital, Port-au-Prince.

Mr Moise was murdered in his bedroom by Colombian mercenaries in 2021. Most have since been arrested or killed.

His death threw Haiti into a prolonged political crisis and led to unprecedented levels of lawlessness.

Within months, criminal gangs extended their control over the capital, including its infrastructure and main fuel port.

Mr Badio is accused of ordering hitmen to carry out the attack. He is charged with murder, attempted murder and armed robbery.

Local media said Mr Badio had been fired from his post as an anti-corruption official in the justice ministry a few months before the assassination, after he was allegedly bribed to release a prisoner.

Some of the hitmen arrested hours after the killing alleged that Mr Badio, 60, had given them their orders.

Others implicated in the case have been convicted in the US. They include John Joel Joseph, a former Haitian senator, and Haitian-Chilean businessman Rodolphe Jaar.

The US has also accused Venezuelan-American Antonio Intriago, the owner of Florida-based CTU Security, of hiring the hitmen. He faces a number of charges including conspiracy to kill or kidnap.

Haiti’s unelected government has struggled to provide even basic services since Mr Moise’s death.

According to a UN report this week, gangs have taken control of much of the capital, running schools and clinics but also terrorising the population and fighting turf wars.

Thousands of Haitians have fled their homes in Port-au-Prince amid the soaring violence, and thousands have already died this year.

The UN recently ratified deploying an international force to support Haiti’s police, but few countries have committed personnel and it has yet to materialise.

It approved earlier this month Kenya’s offer to lead a multinational force to help restore order.

Source : BBC