Haiti prosecutors seek to interview PM over Jovenel Moise killing

Prime Minister Ariel Henry asked to explain why he spoke with one of the main suspects just hours after the assassination of the president in July.

Prime Minister Ariel Henry waves as he leaves the funeral vigil for President Jovenel Moise in Cap-Haitien in July [File: Valerie Baeriswyl/AFP]

Haiti’s chief public prosecutor has invited Prime Minister Ariel Henry to meet him next week to explain why he spoke with one of the main suspects in the assassination of former President Jovenel Moise on the night of the crime.

A letter sent by prosecutor Bed-Ford Claude to Henry on Friday said only a president could authorise official summons to someone of his rank, but the country was without one. Instead, he was being “invited” to attend and cooperate.

The hearing at the Court of First Instance of Port-au-Prince would take place at 10am on Tuesday, it said.

“The head of the criminal prosecution would be grateful if you could present yourself … to cooperate with Haitian justice if you so wish, taking into account the restrictions given your status as a senior state official,” the letter said.

Henry did not immediately reply to a request for comment.

Moise was shot dead when assassins stormed his private residence in the hills above Port-au-Prince on July 7, plunging the impoverished Caribbean country deeper into turmoil.

Investigators say former Haitian justice ministry official Joseph Felix Badio might have ordered the assassination.

Subpoenaed records from mobile phone operator Digicel have now also enabled them to confirm accusations that Badio and Henry spoke on July 7, twice at approximately 4am, just hours after Moise’s killing, according to the letter sent on Friday.

Geolocalisation data also show Badio was speaking from the scene of the crime, the letter said.

Source: Reuters