Haitian Authorities Offer Reward for Arrest of Gang Leader

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Haitian authorities are offering ten million Gourdes (One Gourde=US$0.006 cents) for information leading to the capture of Vitel “Homme” Innocent, the leader of the “Kraze Baryè” gang blamed for a number of killing and kidnappings in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) country.

The announcement came as the National Police of Haiti (PNH) launched “Operation Tornado 1” in Torcelle, aimed at dismantling the gang and the arrest of Innocent, who is also wanted by United States authorities for conspiracy to commit hostage taking and hostage taking, according to an indictment filed with the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.

The Central Directorate of the Judicial Police (DCPJ), in a notice published on Sunday, announced the ten million Gourde reward “to any citizen providing information to the police” resulting in the arrest of Innocent, who is considered to be “armed and dangerous”.

The authorities said Innocent, who allegedly worked with the gang 400 Mawozo that kidnapped 17 Christian Missionaries in Haiti last year is wanted on kidnappings for ransom, rape, assassinations, and attempted assassinations as well as armed robbery charges.

Last month, the United States Department of State’s Transnational Organized Crime Rewards Program announced it is offering a reward of up to one million US dollars for information leading to the arrest and/or conviction of Innocent.

It said Vitel Innocent has ties to or may travel to the neighboring Dominican Republic and persons with information should contact any FBI office worldwide or the nearest American Embassy or Consulate.

Meanwhile, the latest report issued by the Order of Human Rights Defenders on insecurity in Haiti, claims 64 people have been shot dead, including 18 police officers, during January.

It said 52 people were killed in January 2022.

Prime Minister Dr. Ariel Henry, who came to office following the 2021 assassination of President Jovenel Moïse, has called for an international force to help deal with the situation in Haiti.


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