Haitian judge in charge of president’s murder investigation resigns

PORT-AU-PRINCE – The Haitian judge overseeing the investigation into the assassination of President Jovenel Moise in July said in a letter Friday that he was withdrawing from the case, deepening the mayhem in the country. an ongoing investigation into the blatant crime.

Garry Orelien was appointed in August as the investigative judge in the case. His mandate ended in December and he said his request for an extension was denied.

Orelian said he had dropped the investigation “around the facts of the assassination of Republican President Jovenel Moise, this for personal reasons,” according to a copy of the letter seen by Reuters. Orelian confirmed in a phone interview that he wrote the letter and declined to comment further.

His investigation did not lead to charges against any of the dozens of suspects arrested by Haitian police. Orelien in an interview this week blamed the lack of progress on inadequate support from other Haitian organizations.

Moise was killed on July 7 when gunmen stormed his home. A Haitian police report in August concluded that a little-known Haitian-American doctor hired a group of former Colombian soldiers to kill the president and take power.

The next steps in the Haitian probe are unclear. But the United States has played an increasing role in criminal investigations.

Bernard Saint-Vil, the head of the Port-au-Prince court who assigned Orelien to the investigation, said on Tuesday in an interview with local radio that Orelien had quit his job because he had not completed the investigation. check on time.

Orelien initially insisted he would continue the case. Saint-Vil did not respond to a request for comment.

Moise’s murder further undermined Haiti’s precarious security and political situation, drawing gangs to expand territory and escalate kidnappings – including the kidnapping of a group of Canadian missionaries and America lasted two months.

Reporting by Gessika Thomas in Port-au-Prince and Brian Ellsworth in Miami; Editing by Cynthia Osterman.

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