Man who recruited ‘Haiti assassins’ claims says President Jovenel Moïse was killed by guards, not his men
Antonio Intriago, of the CTU Security firm, said his men were authorized to act by former Haitian Justice Windelle Coq-Thélot and arrest the late Jovenel Moïse ‘ONLY‘
The Miami-based security contractor who supplied mercenaries accused of Haiti assassination claims says plot was masterminded by the fired Haitian supreme Court Justice
Intriago claims after Coq-Thélot contacted him still pretending to be in office, he stayed in contact with the FBI to verify validity of the mission
He further claims that when the mercenaries arrived at the president’s room, Moïse was already dead
There is an arrest warrant on murder charges for Coq-Thélot, who is in hiding
President Moïse made a decree ending her career and those of two other justices at the Supreme Court on February 7
He accused them, along with 20 other people, of plotting a coup in which he was supposed to be killed
Intriago says he was first contacted by Haitian born, Miami-based physician and preacher, Christian Emmanuel Sanon, 63, who believed God chose him to remove Moise from power
The job, initially to guard solar-power stations in a southern town in Haiti, continuously evolved to helping police arrest Moise, who opponents called a ‘dictator’
The Miami-based security contractor accused of assembling the killer squad that stormed the residence Haitian President Jovenel Moïse, is pointing fingers at a former member Haiti’s highest bench.
The Miami-based security contractor reportedly hired Colombian mercenaries accused of killing Haitian President Jovenel Moïse last month said he was engaged by former Haitian Supreme Court judge Justice Windelle Coq-Thélot to help arrest Moïse and not assassinate him.
Antonio Intriago, owner of the CTU Security firm, said his men were actually hired to help police arrest Moïse on July 7.
He added that he had been in contact with the FBI to verify that the U.S. government knew about his mission. But when the mercenaries stormed the presidents house and got to his room, he was already dead.
His lawyers said the plan to set him up was masterminded by former Justice Windelle Coq-Thélot, who was fired earlier in the year, along with two other justices after the late-president claimed he had foiled their attempt at a coup in February.
An arrest warrant was issued for Coq-Thélot following the assassination. Authorities have yet to find her.
The lawyer’s statements said Intriago was initially contacted by Christian Sanon, a Haitian-American preacher and doctor, to provide security for solar-power stations in a southern Haitian town, the Wall Street Journal Reports.
The 63-year-old preacher is currently under arrest and had previously said he believed God had chosen him to remove Moise from power.
Sanon was one of three U.S. citizens arrested in connection to the assassination, along with DEA informant Joseph Vincent and James Solages, 35, a maintenance worker.
Vincent had claimed that that his work with Sanon was backed by the U.S. government. A number of the arrested suspects were also FBI informants, CNN reported.
Haitian born Christian Emmanuel Sanon, a 63-year-old Florida doctor and pastor, reportedly told Haitian professor Michel Plancher at a meeting last month it was God’s ‘mission’ for him to replace Jovenel Moïse as the leader of the Caribbean country. The preacher doctor has been described him as ‘gullible’ and may have been duped by those really behind the assassination plot.
Sanon ‘is completely gullible,’ one associate added.
‘He thinks God is going to save everything.’
‘He said he was sent by God. He was sent on a mission of God to replace Moïse,’ Plancher, a civil engineering professor at Quisqueya University in the Haitian capital Port-au-Prince, told the New York Times.
Another theory thrown out by Sanon associates is the suggestion that the US supported the plot for the doctor to assume control of the country. The mission was supposed to ‘save Haiti from hell, with support from the US government,’ they said.
The same associates insist that Christian Sanon would not have participated if he knew Moïse would be killed.
The plan was ‘only for Moïse to be arrested,’ one associate said.
Intriago’s lawyers said he was caught by surprise when the job he was hired for evolved into arresting the president of Haiti, so he reached out to some of his contacts in the FBI to update them on the plan.
‘Whenever Mr. Intriago questioned the legality of providing security services for Dr. Sanon or anyone else in Haiti, [the business associate] called his FBI contacts and Mr. Intriago became confident that the United States government knew exactly what was taking place in Haiti,’ his lawyers said.
They did not share who Intriago’s contact in the FBI were, nor did they clarify which parts of the ever evolving story the FBI was made aware of.
The State Department previously stated that reports of the mercenaries acting on behalf of the U.S. government were false. The Biden administration have sent investigators from the FBI and Department of Homeland Security to help solve the case.
Intriago said he had eventually received a warrant against the president for the crime of murder, which was issued by Haitian Judge Jean Roger Noelcius in February, the Wall Street Journal Reports.
Intriago added that he had received a notice from Coq-Thélot , who pretended to still be in-power, saying that Moise had become a ‘dictator’ after allegedly overstaying his five-year-term.
Her request allegedly, was stated as: ‘I hereby expressly request that your company, that its members assist our Constitutional authorities, especially myself and in general the Haitian people in order to protect democracy,’ she wrote in the letter to Intriago that was released by his lawyers.
‘I ratify, in my capacity as a Magistrate, in my capacity as a lifetime official and that I represent the people, and protected by the actions of a Judge and a Prosecutor, by the merit given to us by the Constitution, the Law and Reason that we give and will give immunity, protection and security to their actions in our favor.’
Windelle Coq-Thélot is a former judge at La Cour de Cassation, Haiti’s highest court.
She is originally from the town of Marmelade, and spent more than a decade at the Court of Appeals in Gonaives and Port-au-Prince. In 2011, she was promoted to associate justice at the nation’s highest court.
In late July authorities in Haiti issued an arrest warrant on murder charges for Judge Windelle Coq-Thélot, formerly of Haiti’s Supreme Court, in relation to the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse.
Coq-Thélot was among a group of at least 23 people that Moïse alleged tried to overthrow him on February 7, amid disputes over his unwillingness to to call for elections at the end of his term, instead extending his term’s end date.
She was among the three candidates chosen to replace him by the political opposition.
Moïse had issued a February 8 decree that forced Coq-Thélot and the other two judges to retire.
Subsequently, Judge René Sylvestre became the chief justice over the Supreme Court, a role that is next in the line of succession if the president cannot function.
Justice Sylvestre died of Covid-19 in June, leaving the role vacant at the time of Moïse was assassinated.
Intriago’s ultimately claimed that it was the president’s own bodyguards who betrayed and killed him, but they did not elaborate on the reason why they guards may have done so.
Haitian and Colombian police have accused Intriago of recruiting the hit squad of assassins responsible for the president’s slaying.
Colombia’s national police chief Gen. Jorge Luis Vargas said the company credit card was used to buy 19 plane tickets from Bogota to Santo Domingo for some of the Colombian suspects. Most arrived in the Dominican Republic in June before entering Haiti within weeks, Vargas said.
Charles said Sanon flew into Haiti in June on a private jet accompanied by several of the alleged gunmen.
The suspects were told their job was to protect Sanon, but they were later ordered to arrest the president, Charles said.
Haiti’s National Police chief Léon Charles said that after Moïse was killed, one of the suspected assassins contacted Sanon who then got in touch with two other people believed to be masterminds of the plot.
He did not identify the masterminds or say if police know who they are.
Authorities are yet to present evidence of Sanon’s involvement in the assassination plot.
Haitian police said officers found a hat emblazoned with the logo of the US Drug Enforcement Administration in Sanon’s home in Haiti, along with 20 boxes of bullets, gun parts, four license plates from the Dominican Republic, two cars and correspondence.
Sanon, it has been revealed, launched a website a month earlier, campaigning to replace Jovenel Moïse as president of Haiti. As part of the campaign he claimed to have the backing of a key UN figure and wrote a letter to a US State Department official saying he had been picked as interim leader of the country.
His political ambitions appeared to at least date back to February 2011 when he launched a website entitled ‘Dr. Christian Sanon Leadership pour Haiti’.
The site has since vanished but archived web pages from 2011 to 2016 include a portal for donations, a ‘plan for Haiti’, and news updates on Sanon’s efforts to build clinics in the aftermath of the devastating 2010 earthquake.
In a YouTube video for the campaign, he hits out at the nation’s leaders for corruption.
Sanon has lived in the US since the 70s including Kansas City, Missouri and most recently Florida.
An open thread in the investigation is the reported presence of DEA and FBI informants among the mercenaries arrested in the assassination plot.
Joseph Vincent helped the DEA in 2017 to arrest Guy Philippe, who led a 2004 coup against then-President Jean Bertrand Aristide, on drugs trafficking charges, the sources said.
Vincent was with Haitian Police when Philippe was handed over to the DEA at an airport. Philippe is now serving nine years in a US federal prison.
Footage from the assassination shows an attacker with an American accent shouting in English ‘this is a DEA operation’ as the hit squad arrived at the president’s mansion.
Both US and Haitian authorities insisted in the hours after the assassination that the DEA was not involved.
A DEA official, speaking under condition of anonymity, confirmed one Haitian-American man arrested in the assassination plot had worked as a US informant. ‘At times, one of the suspects in the assassination of Haitian President Jovenel Moïse was a confidential source to the DEA.’
The suspect was not an active informant with the DEA at the time of the assassination, they said. According to DEA the source, ‘Following the assassination of President Moïse, the suspect reached out to his contacts at the DEA.’
The agency and the US State Department urged him to surrender and helped to arrange him being handed over to Haitian authorities, they said.