Jean Dominique

This story was shared by Matthew to the social justice listserv. The line that jumped out at me reads:
“After all, aren’t we holding, for many years now, conventions of corruption, violence and impunity in a society which has made forgetting the best tool to survive?”


AHP News, April 2 – English Translation (Unofficial)
How important is Jean Dominique?
by Michèle Montas and Jan Dominique

Six years ago, on April 3, 2000, journalist Jean
Léopold Dominique
was killed yards away from his
station, Radio Haïti.
It has been six years and still justice has not been
served for this free speech activist. As of today, his
murderers, as well as those who murdered Jean Claude
Louissaint and Maxime Seide two years later to shut
down the movement for justice, are still walking the
streets freely.
With the oh-so troubling voice of Radio Haiti no
longer around, the April 3 murder cases have not moved
for three years in a conspiracy of silence and
impunity.
The trial, taken over by four different judges, lasted
2 years and 10 months. It was agitated and bloody.
Suspects died in prison under strange circumstances.
Witnesses were killed. A judge went into exhile after
receiving threats. Almost every State institution
tried to stop the investigation: arrest warrants
ignored by the police, Senate opposition to waving off
a Senator’s parliamentarian immunity, police officers
publicly threatening a judge, the Head of State
temporary refusing (in 2002) to renew the mandate of
the judge leading the case.
After a not so subtle intervention by the Minister of
Justice of the time, the investigation theoretically
reached its conclusion on March 21, 2003, a month
after Radio Haïti was forced to shut down following an
assassination attempt, a murder and numerous threats
to its journalists. Even though the trial, from May
2000 to January 2002, had heard tens of witnesses and
had handed about 20 charges, Judge Bernard St Vil
convicted six individuals for the death of the
journalist. No sponsor was named.
On April 3, 2003, the family of the journalist made
appeal on the investigation’s conclusions. On August
4, 2003, Port-au-Prince’s Court of Appeal asked for a
new trial and freed three of the six convicted
individuals. The other three appealed to the Supreme
Court of Appeal, thus suspending the entire case.
Meanwhile, those three individuals, Jeudy Jean Daniel,
Dimsey Milien and Markenton Philippe, broke prison.
On March 14, 2004, the police followed two of Judge
St-Vil’s orders and arrested a former assistant to the
mayor of Port-au-Prince, Harold Sévère, charged on
January 28, 2003, and Roustide Pétion, alias mDouze,
for their alleged implication in the April 3 murders.
On June 29, 2004, the Supreme Court of Appeal rejected
the « Appeal of sirs Dymsley Millien named Tilou, Jean
Daniel Jeudi named Guimy and Markington Phillipe
against the order of the Court of Appeal of
Port-au-Prince

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