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Ex-senator becomes fourth international fugitive arrested in Haiti assassination plot

Joseph was captured after over a half-year search. Photo from Le Nouvelliste.

John Joël Joseph, a former Haitian senator, has been arrested by Jamaican police in connection with the assassination of Jovenel Moïse. Joseph, an opponent of Moïse’s Haitian Tet Kale Party (PHTK), had been evading arrest for more than six months before he was apprehended over the weekend.

Investigators say Joseph is a prime suspect, according to the Associated Press, which said it obtained a police report that has still not been released. The 122-page report states that Joseph was a leader of the assassination plot, had paid for the assassins’ rental cars and met with other suspects before the brazen murder occurred.

Haitian officials had searched multiple homes in July, hoping to arrest Joseph, according to the Haitian police report.

Jamaica Police Superintendent Stephanie Lindsay said others were also arrested with Joseph before dawn on Saturday morning and the police were trying to determine whether or not they are family members. 

Joseph is the second assassination suspect arrested in Jamaica. Three months ago, former Colombian soldier Mario Antonio Palacios was taken into custody and charged with “conspiracy to commit murder or kidnapping outside the United States.”

Larisa is a reporter for The Haitian Times covering politics, elections and education primarily. A graduate of the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY, she has interned at CNBC and the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network. She is also a recipient of a 2021 DBEI Fellowship by Investigative Reporters & Editors. Larisa can be reached by email at or on Twitter @larisakarr.

More by Larisa Karr

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