Jean Claude Duvalier must be found innocent and released, if the Haitian court system is to maintain any semblance of legality. Duvalier is not guilty of the crimes suggested and – if he were – they would be Statute Barred now, 20 years having passed.
However, Presidents Rene Preval and Jean Bertraand Aristide are guilty of several major crimes, including murder, kidnap, cocaine traffic and massive thefts of public funds. None of these are Statute Barred.
The murders of Sylvio Claude, Roger Lafontant, Antoine Izmery, Pastor Leroy, Mireille Durocher Bertin, General Max Mayard, John Dominique, Father Jean Marie Vincent, Robert Marcello and a French Consul – to name a few. Peter Jennings, the ABC anchor, once listed 89 political killings that were the responsibility of the Aristide/Preval duo.
The American legal system has sealed dossiers that tie Preval/Aristide to the cocaine traffic in such a way that they could be tried as drug Kingpins and receive life sentences.
And then there is the real, not imagined theft of hundreds of millions by the Aristide/Preval duo.
There is an old saying…”Let sleeping dogs lie…” Rene Preval is about to open a Pandora’s Box that may eat him alive.
In addition to the legal repercussions, there will be a massive public explosion if Duvalier is illegally tossed into prison. This may be the final straw that sees Preval dumped….and then brought to Justice, along with his many compatriots, including Paul Denis, the Minister of Justice who has pressured the presiding judge in the Duvalier case.
Pere Samedi once observed of his friend Aristide… ”Duvalier sipped the state funds through a cocktail straw while Aristide used a bamboo pipe..” In fact, no funds were found in the legal search for illegal Duvalier cash. The only target anyone has ever discovered is $6,100,000 from his mother’s charity and – on January 15, 2011 – three days after the quake – Duvalier asked that this be turned over to the Red Cross for the benefit of his Haitian citizens.
There was no such comment from Preval for the $198,000,000 he, and his associates, stole from Petro Caraibe funds, dedicated for relief of hurricane victims, or the $38,000,000 scammed by Preval in the purchase of time-expired emergency kits, after the January 12, 2010 quake.
Duvalier is a very popular person, among the Haitian masses while Preval is universally reviled. On February 8 Duvalier made a whirlwind, unannounced tour of many places in Haiti and was met at each stop by thousands who just wanted to shake his hand, or touch their friend.
Harm or threaten Duvalier and Preval will have no place to hide. There should be no immunity. There should be no impunity for Preval. There should be nowhere to escape. He should he held in Haiti and judged for his many crimes.
Ex-Congressman Bob Barr, well known trial attorneys Ed Marger and Mike Puglise represent Jean Claude Duvalier in America. One of them will fly into Haiti to be with Duvalier in these difficult times.
Bob Barr flew to Washington today.