Colombian sentenced in assassination of Moise

Miami – A retired Colombian military officer  was on Friday sentenced to life imprisonment for his role in the July 7, 2021 assassination of the 53-year-old Haitian President, Jovenel Moise, at his private residence, overlooking the capital, Port au Prince.

Moise’s wife, Martine Marie Étienne Moïse, who was present when the armed group entered the private residence, had to be treated in the United States for injuries sustained in the attack carried out by hired group of about 20 military-trained Colombians.

The United States has maintained it has jurisdiction in the case because Washington claims the plot to kill Moise was hatched in part in the US.

German Rivera, the retired captain, who last month pleaded guilty to taking part in the plan, appeared before Judge Jose Martinez for sentencing. Dressed in brown prison garb, with his feet and wrists bound, Rivera passed on an opportunity to address the court before the sentence was read out.

He is the second person convicted in the United States over the assassination. In June, Haitian-Chilean Rodolphe Jaar, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to life in prison for his role in supplying weapons to carry out the assassination.

Earlier this week, the investigative judge in Haiti, Walter Wesser Voltaire, remanded Joseph Félix Badio to prison after he appeared before him for less than 10 minutes.

Badio is the first person sent to prison by magistrate Voltaire as part of the investigation of the assassination of Moise, whose death plunged the French-speaking Caribbean Community (CARICOM) country into further instability with armed criminal gangs ruling most of the capital.

Badio, 60, a former official of the Anti-Corruption Unit, who was dismissed on May 17, 2021, for serious breaches of ethical rules, is suspected of ordering the assassination of President Moise and had been on the run since his murder at his private residence overlooking the capital, Port au Prince.

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

A spokesperson for the Haitian National Police (PNH), Inspector Gary Desrosiers, said that Badio was caught while driving out of a supermarket car park in the capital five days ago. (CMC)

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