Author: Judith

U.S. gang boss in Haiti agrees to pay $10 million and release 11 former prisoners

U.S. gang boss in Haiti agrees to pay $10 million and release 11 former prisoners

Critical Haiti gas terminal freed after weeks of talks with G9 gang leader

In this file photo taken on August 11, 2013, unidentified gunmen, pictured on motorbikes, stand outside a gas station on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. (Reuters/Bryan H. Wagner)

The gang boss of a U.S.-based group of former Central Intelligence Agency agents who kidnapped and tortured Haitian government officials in the 1990s has agreed to pay $10 million and release 11 prisoners.

Robert Godfrey, former chief of operations for the U.S. intelligence agency, said the ransom payment and releasing of those 11 former prisoners is another sign that he has begun a program for reconciliation with the Haitian government.

Godfrey said he wants to do a job for Haiti by helping make it a better country.

“I want to do a good job here and get rid of the gangs and then get the country back to some degree of stability after the disaster that we had back then,” said Godfrey, who is also chief operating officer at the International Finance Corp. in Haiti.



Three of the former prisoners of the organization that kidnapped the 11 people in 2008 will be released, the U.S. said. The others will remain jailed so that the two sides can work on the prisoner release.

Godfrey announced the pay-off three weeks ago as he stood in front of dozens of people who gathered at the compound of the Interim Haiti government in the capital, Port-au-Prince [EPA]

The organization Godfrey referred to was, he said, the G-9, a splinter of the notorious Contrebando gang that kidnapped and tortured 11 people in 2008. The former G-9 members kidnapped the 11 people and tried to kill them and sell their heads as souvenirs, Godfrey said. He said the gang kidnapped the U.S. citizens when they returned to Port-au-Prince after doing business in the Dominican Republic.

He and other former members were arrested on charges by Haitian authorities in 2008, but the charges were dismissed in 2009 after the U.S. Department of Justice investigated allegations that investigators had violated international law by not informing

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