Authorities in Haiti have issued five new arrest warrants in relation to the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse. The latest suspects sought include Liné Balthazar, president of the “Haitien Tet Kale” Party (PHTK), Paul Denis, a former senator and the head of the INIFOS party, Samir Handall, a businessman, and Gerald Bataille and Gérard Forge, both of whom are pastors.
Bed-Ford Claude, the government commissioner at the Court of First Instance, issued the warrants August 3 on suspicion of murder and attempted murder in connection with the July 7 slaying of Haiti’s president, according to court records dated July 12, 2021.
It is unclear if any of the new suspects are in custody as of late Tuesday. Authorities have not said why they took nearly three weeks to publicize the warrants.
Moïse was shot dead and apparently tortured in the middle of the night at his private residence in Pèlerin 4. A group of more than 20 mostly Colombian mercenaries allegedly carried out the heinous act that also left First Lady Martine Moïse wounded.
Two weeks ago, Claude issued a similar arrest warrant on murder charges for Judge Windelle Coq-Thélot, a former Supreme Court judge, in relation to the assassination. Authorities arrested her and Presidential Security Coordinator Jean Laguel Civil on suspicion of involvement in the assassination plot. Dimitri Herard, another senior member of Moise’s security detail, is also in custody.