The Haitian Embassy in France denounced a French outlet in a statement Monday for reporting without proof that the Haitian government paid gang members USD $80,000 to give back a police tank.
The report was made in a May 16 Exclusive Investigation episode, “Haiti: The Law of the Gangs.”
“The embassy regrets that the report presented as verified information a rumor in which the Haitian state had to buy back [with] 80,000 dollars a tank briefly held by bandits without supporting it with evidence, as the ethics of the matter would want,” the embassy wrote.
Members of the Five Seconds gang took the tank after killing five police officers in Village-de-Dieu, Port-au-Prince in March. After the police retrieved the tank that same month, a rumor broke out that Léon Charles, the head of the police force, bribed gang members to get back the tank. Charles denied the rumor, saying the tank had been abandoned.