HomeNewsBriefSenator-elect in Haiti One of DEA's Most Wanted
BRIEF

Senator-elect in Haiti One of DEA's Most Wanted

CARIBBEAN / 7 DEC 2016 BY TRISTAN CLAVEL AND STEVEN DUDLEY EN

A Haitian sought by the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) for drug trafficking and money laundering was elected senator in his home country, an illustration of the perverse disconnect between the law and its lawmakers in that island nation.

The preliminary results of the senate election in Haiti's Grand Anse province held on November 20, indicate that Guy Philippe won a six-year term in the legislative body, reported The Guardian and other news outlets.

The British newspaper noted that Philippe, a former police officer who speaks four languages and participated in the 2004 coup against then-President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, has not only been accused of extrajudicial killings by Human Rights Watch, but also holds an outstanding arrest warrant from the US government for conspiracy to import cocaine and money laundering. He also appears on the Miami Division DEA's most wanted list.

On top of these US accusations of drug-related activities, Philippe is reportedly facing a Haitian arrest warrant for his alleged involvement in a deadly May 2016 attack against the Les Cayes police station. One of the apprehended assailants claimed Philippe had organized the assault.

InSight Crime Analysis

Haiti has long been a hub for drug trafficking and drug traffickers. The criminals' relationship with power, however, is normally less visible and obvious than Philippe's has long been.

SEE ALSO: Coverage of Elites and Organized Crime

Philippe organized a rebel faction in 2004, in the runaway province of Gonaives, as multiple groups worked to overthrow then President Aristide. After Aristide was ushered from the country in what some observers and the former president himself called a United States coup d'etat, Philippe tried to position himself to take power. He ran for president in 2006, but lost badly.

Then he was isolated politically. His enemies pounced. In 2007, the DEA and Haitian authorities tried and failed to capture him, forcing him to move back to his home town, Pestel, according to a New York Times report.  

By 2016, he had repositioned himself as a power broker, reportedly issuing threats about another rebellion. Instead, he ran for senate and won. His Facebook page showed a picture of a glowing Philippe alongside a picture of the official results with a message.

"My fellow citizens," he wrote, "Together, we will go and live with a belief in the homeland." 

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

BRAZIL / 29 SEP 2022

Brazil is facing a presidential election that could genuinely reshape its criminal landscape. How do Bolsonaro and Lula compare?…

COLOMBIA / 20 APR 2021

An elusive drug trafficker has brought a criminal libel case against InSight Crime Co-director Jeremy McDermott, despite widespread official confirmation…

ELITES AND CRIME / 3 NOV 2022

The trial of Genaro García Luna, Mexico's public security minister during the presidency of Felipe Calderón, is fast approaching.

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Escaping Barrio 18

27 JAN 2023

Last week, InSight Crime published an investigation charting the story of Desafío, a 28-year-old Barrio 18 gang member who is desperate to escape gang life. But there’s one problem: he’s…

THE ORGANIZATION

Europe Coverage Makes a Splash

20 JAN 2023

Last week, InSight Crime published an analysis of the role of Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport as an arrival hub for cocaine and methamphetamine from Mexico.  The article was picked up by…

THE ORGANIZATION

World Looks to InSight Crime for Mexico Expertise

13 JAN 2023

Our coverage of the arrest of Chapitos’ co-founder Ovidio Guzmán López in Mexico has received worldwide attention.In the UK, outlets including The Independent and BBC…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Shares Expertise with US State Department

16 DEC 2022

Last week, InSight Crime Co-founder Steven Dudley took part in the International Anti-Corruption Conference organized by the US State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, & Labor and…

THE ORGANIZATION

Immediate Response to US-Mexico Marijuana Investigation

9 DEC 2022

InSight Crime’s investigation into how the legalization of marijuana in many US states has changed Mexico’s criminal dynamics made a splash this week appearing on the front page of…