'Several' suspects in Haiti president plot 'were US informants'

Revealed: ‘Several’ suspects in Haiti presidential assassination ‘were US informants’ as DEA admits arrested American was confidential mole who they told to surrender after the hit

  • Several suspects involved in the assassination were previously U.S. informants
  • Joseph Vincent, 55, was identified as a former occasional source for the DEA  
  • DEA refused to name the person, but admitted one of the arrested was a source
  • Others previously worked as informants for the FBI, it has emerged
  • Authorities arrested two Haitian-American men – Vincent and James Solages, 35
  • They were charged over the assassination of Haitian President Jovenel Moise

Several suspects arrested on suspicion of taking part in the assassination of Haiti’s president last week were previously US informants, it has emerged.   

One suspect, a Haitian-American man, had been an informant to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, a DEA official said on Monday.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, declined to name the informant, but he was identified as Joseph Gertand Vincent, 55, by the Miami Herald.  

Other former informants worked the FBI, CNN reported. The agency refused to comment on the allegation, but said it uses ‘lawful sources to collect intelligence’ in its investigations. 

Haitian authorities last week arrested Vincent and fellow Haitian-American James Solages, 35. They were both charged with joining 26 Colombians in the fatal attack on Haitian President Jovenel Moise.

James Solages, 35, (left) and Joseph Vincent, 55, (right) are both US citizens of Haitian descent, and were arrested along with Colombian nationals over Wednesday’s brazen assassination of President Moïse’s mansion in the hills above Port-au-Prince

Haitian President Jovenel Moïse and First Lady Martine are pictured together in 2017. Moïse was riddled with 12 bullet holes and had his eye gouged out during the brutal July 7 attack rthat claimed his life and left his wife seriously injured

One of the Haitian-American men arrested on suspicion of taking part in the assassination of Haiti’s president last week had been an informant to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration

The suspect was not an active informant with the DEA at the time of the assassination, a law enforcement source said.

‘One of the suspects in the assassination of Haitian President Jovenel Moise was a confidential source to the DEA,’ the DEA official said in an email, adding that the suspect had reached out to the DEA after the assassination and that it urged him to surrender. 

‘These individuals were not acting on behalf of DEA.’

Haitians in parts of the capital Port-au-Prince planned protests this week against the interim prime minister and acting head of state Claude Joseph. 

Joseph’s right to lead the country has been challenged by other senior politicians, threatening to exacerbate the turmoil engulfing the poorest country in the Americas.

Many demonstrated in support of former opposition Senators Youri Latortue and Steven Benoit as they made statements before prosecutor Bed-Ford Claude at the Palace of Justice on Monday. 

Haitians in parts of the capital Port-au-Prince protest in support for former opposition Senators Youri Latortue and Steven Benoit as they made statements before prosecutor Bed-Ford Claude

Supporters of former Haitian opposition Senators Youri Latortue and Steven Benoit gathered around the Palace of Justice on Monday

Protesters built barricades and set them on fire near the Palace of Justice as prosecutor Bed-Ford Claude prepared to hear testimony from former Senators

Haitian soldiers guard the entrance to the Palace of Justice after former opposition senators Youri Latortue and Steven Benoit arrived to give statements on Monday

Tire fires were set outside the Palace of Justice on Monday as a hearing on the assassination of President Jovenel Moise resumed

A third Haitian-American, Christian Emmanuel Sanon, was arrested on Sunday by Haitian authorities, who accused him of being a mastermind of the attack.

Sanon – a physician, a church pastor, and a failed Florida businessman who filed for bankruptcy – is unknown in Haitian political circles, and associates suggested he was duped by those really behind the assassination of President Moïse.

A Florida friend of Sanon told AP the suspect is an evangelical Christian pastor and also is a licensed physician in Haiti, but not in the U.S. 

The associate, who spoke on condition of anonymity out of safety concerns, said Sanon told him he was approached by people claiming to represent the U.S. State and Justice departments who wanted to install him as president.

He said the plan was only for Moïse to be arrested, and Sanon would not have participated if he knew Moïse would be killed.

‘I guarantee you that,’ the associate said. ‘This was supposed to be a mission to save Haiti from hell, with support from the U.S. government.’

Haiti’s National Police chief, Léon Charles, said Moïse’s killers were protecting Sanon.

Charles said officers found a hat with the logo of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, 20 boxes of bullets, gun parts, four license plates from the Dominican Republic, two cars and correspondence, among other things, in Sanon’s house in Haiti.  

Heavily armed Haitian police have increased patrols on the streets of the capital Port-au-Prince following the assassination of President Jovenel Moise

Protesters set tires alight outside the Palace of Justice on Monday as former Senators Youri Latortue and Steven Benoit testify in front of a judge

Supporters of former Haitian Senator Steven Benoit sit atop his car in Port-au-Prince as he leaves following a hearing at the Palace of Justice

Demonstrators enact a mock execution for the opposition to former Senator Steven Benoit outside the Palace of Justice on Monday

Meanwhile, Colombia’s national police chief, Gen. Jorge Luis Vargas, said that a Florida-based enterprise, CTU Security, used its company credit card to buy 19 plane tickets from Bogota to Santo Domingo for Colombian suspects. 

Most arrived in the Dominican Republic in June and moved into Haiti within weeks, Vargas said. 

He said Dimitri Hérard, head of general security at Haiti’s National Palace, flew to Colombia, Ecuador and Panama in the months before the assassination, and Colombian police are investigating whether he had any role in recruiting the mercenaries. In Haiti, prosecutors are seeking to interrogate Hérard as part of the assassination investigation.

Charles said that Sanon was in contact with CTU Security and that the company recruited the suspects in the killing. He said Sanon flew into Haiti in June on a private jet accompanied by several of the alleged gunmen.

The suspects were told their job was to protect Sanon, but they were later ordered to arrest the president, Charles said.

Charles said that after Moïse was killed, one suspect called Sanon, who got in touch with two people believed to be masterminds of the plot. He did not identify the masterminds or say if police know who they are.

Sanon’s associate said he attended a recent meeting in Florida with Sanon and about a dozen other people, including Antonio Enmanuel Intriago Valera, a Venezuelan émigré to Miami who runs CTU Security. He said a presentation was made for rebuilding Haiti, including its water system, converting trash into energy and fixing roads.

He said Sanon asked why the security team accompanying him to Haiti were all Colombians. Sanon was told that Haitians couldn’t be trusted and that the system is corrupt, the associate said. He said Sanon called him from Haiti a few days before the assassination and said the Colombians had disappeared.

‘I’m all by myself. Who are these people? I don’t know what they are doing,’ the associate quoted Sanon as saying.

Sanon ‘is completely gullible,’ the associate added. ‘He thinks God is going to save everything.’

Christian Emmanuel Sanon, 63, who was arrested in Haiti over the weekend, had campaigned to replace slain President Jovenel Moise weeks before the Haitian leader’s assassination, DailyMail.com can reveal

Suspects in the assassination of Haiti’s President Jovenel Moise, among them Haitian-American citizens James Solages, left, and Joseph Vincent, second left, are shown to the media at the General Direction of the police in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Thursday, July 8, 2021

Suspects in the assassination of Haiti’s President Jovenel Moïse are shown to the media in Port-au-Prince, Haiti on Thursday

U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies are probing why the Haitian-American men may have taken part in the assassination.

The U.S. Justice Department said on Monday that it had been asked by Haiti to assist in the probe of Moise’s murder, and was doing so.

‘An initial assessment has been conducted in Haiti by senior U.S. officials,’ said spokesman Anthony Coley. 

‘The department will also investigate whether there were any violations of U.S. criminal law in connection with this matter.’

A source close to the investigation said Solages and Vincent told investigators they were translators for a Colombian commando unit that had an arrest warrant for Moise, but that when they arrived, they found Moise dead.

Solages described himself online as a ‘certified diplomatic agent’ and the former ‘chief commander of bodyguards’ for the Canadian Embassy in Haiti. 

Those statements were made on the website of a charity he ran, which on Thursday removed them. Reuters reviewed an archived version that remains accessible.

Footage circulating online purportedly taken by a neighbor of the president shows men with rifles arriving outside the property

A car riddled with bullet holes outside the late president’s home in the hills near Port-au-Prince on July 7

The President of Haiti Jovenel Moise was shot dead in his home in the Pelerin 5 neighbourhood in the hills above Port-au-Prince

The Miami Herald quoted an unnamed government official as saying that a decade ago, Solages briefly worked for a company that provided security for the Canadian Embassy in Haiti.

‘We are aware of allegations implicating an individual who was briefly employed as a reserve bodyguard by a security company hired by Global Affairs Canada in 2010,’ the newspaper quoted the official as saying.

Florida records show Solages has held security officer and firearm licenses. He had no criminal history. 

Schubert Dorisme, Solages’ relative said: ‘He never gets in trouble with anybody. He’s a good guy’.  

Dorisme added Solage had recently gained U.S. citizenship but still often travelled to Haiti, where he had hoped to become mayor of Jacmel, a port town on the southern coast.  

He described Solage as critical of Moise’s leadership and said he wanted the ‘crazy’ president to resign.

But Dorisme said he did not believe his relative capable of killing. ‘I think somebody used him.’ 

Solages worked as the plant operations director for the assisted living facility at Carlisle Palm Beach, Lantana, but resigned in April, the Palm Beach Post reported. 

He also ran a small economic empowerment charity and a business – EJS Maintenance & Repair LLC -, according to this LinkedIn profile, which has since been changed.  

His former boss, Richard Tournesy, the site’s executive director, said: ‘The whole [Carlisle] community is shocked liked everyone else,

‘He was a good employee. He never showed any signs of violence.’ 

He also said he did not remember Solage ever showing an interest in Haitian politics. 

Tournesy said a full background check was conducted before Solages was hired and was not aware of any concerns raised during the process. 

‘Our job is to ensure our residents are safe, to protect everybody in the community. I don’t know what happened with this young man and his outside life, but in the community, he was a good, standard employee’, he added. 

Few details have emerged about Vincent, but Haitian authorities claim he lives or at some time lived in Miami. 

He reportedly told prosecutors a foreigner named ‘Mike’ masterminded the plan.   

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