Port-au-Prince Chief Prosecutor Senatus Refuses to Prosecute Sophia Martelly and Olivier Martelly

Haitian human rights attorney Louis Newton St. Juste attended a hearing presided over by Port-au-Prince's Chief Prosecutor, Jean Renel Senatus, regarding mis-handling of state monies by First Lady Sophia Martelly and son Olivier. He and his colleague André Michel have spoken with U.S. authorities about the Martellys and corruption within the president's administration at large.


In a press release issued by the Government Commissioner's office after the hearing, Senatus declined to bring charges against the Martellys. He referred to the Code of Criminal Procedure Article 21 that, according to Senatus, forbids prosecution of both Martellys. He called St. Juste's tactics illegal because he has not filed the correct paperwork that would begin an action against the First Lady and her son.

Senatus maligns St. Juste's reputation as a human rights lawyer by saying he is unqualified to bring charges against the Martellys, being that he is not a government official. And Senatus further insists St. Juste has no proof of his allegations.

Newton St. Juste responds he is determined to pursue his case even though Senatus has refused to take any steps to begin prosecution. St. Juste asserts citizens' right to know how First Lady Sophia Martelly and her son, Olivier, are allocating public monies on their committees. The Martelly administration claims Sophia and Olivier make transparent the spending that occurs on their individual committees.

Newton St. Juste asserts "the rule of law has its own requirements . . ." which includes accountability to the tax-paying citizens.

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Read more: Jean Renel Senatus, Newton St. Juste, Government Commissioner, corruption, Olivier Martelly, Sophia Martelly, First Lady, People

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