Louis-Jodel Chamblain has turned himself over to Haitian authorities and on Thursday, 22 April 2004, Chamblain was transferred to the Civil Prison in Petion-Ville (Port-au-Prince).
NCHR favorably welcomes the decision of the former number two FRAPH leader in allowing judicial authorities to make a decision regarding the charges against him, and rendered Chamblain a visit yesterday to observe the conditions of his detention.
Chamblain was tried sentenced on two (2) separate occasions, first for his alleged participation in the murder of Izmery Antoine, a Lavalas businessman on 11 September 1993, and secondly for his involvement in the Raboteau Massacre of 22 April 1994.
In both cases, Chamblain was tried and sentenced in absentia Likewise, Chamblain has the reputation of having participated in numerous other criminal acts within the country – such as the murder of Former Lavalas Justice Minister, Guy Malary on 13 October 1993 and the 1993 Cité Soleil Massacre.
He is also accused of playing a role in scores of summary executions of political opponents that took place during the coup d’état years. NCHR sincerely hopes that this decision – made following two (2) meetings with the Justice Minister and General Direction of the Haitian National Police earlier in the week – will not make a mockery out of the Haitian judicial system serving to hide the truth and wash Chamblain’s hands of the accusations against him.
NCHR anticipates the completion of solid and thorough investigations, and the subsequent organization of a fair and just trial in order to shed light on the abovementioned crimes and those of other FRAPH leaders, and to bring closure to the victims and their families.
NCHR is now waiting for the Haitian National Police to begin taking measures to arrest other individuals with judicial decisions made against them in their absence, in addition to all those who escaped from Haitian prisons during the violent events of February 2004. NB.
According to Haitian law, there are two (2) options for bringing into custody someone who has been tried and sentenced in absentia: the individual can turn him or her self in, or the police authorities can arrests the individual. Once the individual has been turned over to prison officials, the previous sentence is rendered null and void and new judicial proceedings being. Thus in the case of Chamblain, there will be two (2) on-going consecutive investigations related to the charges against him.