Many people played a hand in the 1991 coup that saw the elected president of the Republic of Haiti, Jean-Bertrand Aristide, removed from office, few with as much importance as army colonel and the then Haitian police chief, Joseph-Michel François. He was born on May 8, 1957 and went to military school at Fort Bragg in the United States.
The skills he acquired there would serve him well as part of the oppressive government, which ruled for over three years under Raoul Cédras. During this time, Michel Francois headed up the secret police and oversaw, or facilitated, many human rights violations, murders and other heinous, counter-judiciary acts.
Few people guilty of the most heinous crimes in Haiti's history have received due punishment. It would seem that justice for the wrongs done to people in the country, blatantly orchestrated and performed by those in power, is a thing to be hoped for but never truly achieved.
When Luc Désir was charged with his crimes and sentenced to life imprisonment at hard labor in the late 1980's, it seemed as though all the people he'd tortured, their families who suffered and those whose lives he'd brutally ended, all as the head of Francois Duvalier's Secret Police, would finally see restitution. It's been speculated that hundreds of people imprisoned by him disappeared without trace, the true nature of his dealings with the imprisoned unknown until audio recordings he made of his torture sessions became public fodder.
Another big and prominent name has been dragged into an ongoing kidnapping case involving business tycoon Clifford Brandt. According to reports, Brandt, one of the main suspects in the crime, claimed that Marc-Arthur Phebe was the mastermind behind the kidnappings. Phebe is a National Police officer, as well as the head of the National Palace's CAT Team. He is also Brandt's family security chief.
In order to defend himself, Phebe sought the services of lawyer Carlos Hercule, who is the president of the Federation of Bar Associations. This move is seen to favor Phebe as Hercule is considered one of the most powerful lawyers in the country.
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