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Third top international fugitive arrested as suspect in Moïse assassination case

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC — Authorities apprehended Rodolphe “Whiskey” Jaar, a convicted drug trafficker and former DEA informant, while he was crossing the border from Haiti on Friday. Haitian and Dominican officials confirmed the arrest to the Miami Herald.

Jaar, a Haitian national, had spent months hiding in Haiti after being part of the alleged hit squad that assassinated President Moïse, then tried on Friday to cross into the Dominican Republic, the Herald reported.  

U.S. authorities had requested the arrest of Jaar based on statements provided by Mario Antonio Palacios, a retired Colombian sergeant, according to Haitian officials. Palacios, arraigned January 4 in Miami, has been cooperating with a joint Haiti-U.S. investigation of the assassination. 

With this arrest, Jaar becomes the third international fugitive captured since October 2021 in connection with the gruesome July 7 killing. The other two suspects being held by authorities outside of Haiti are Palacios and Samir Handal, a Haitian-Palestinian businessman. Both are fighting extradition from Jamaica and Turkey, respectively, where each was arrested.

Haiti and the Dominican Republic, where Jaar was detained, do not have an extradition agreement. Such accords allow countries to automatically return captured fugitives to the territory where the crime is committed. 

Palacios and a team of Colombian commandos are suspected of being recruited to provide security in Haiti by a firm near Miami, CTU Federal Academy.

Members of the Colombian security team left Jaar’s home, armed with a plan to kill Moïse, according to the Haitian police report.

Jaar, 49, was convicted of drug trafficking in 2013, according to court documents obtained by Univision. He was also arrested in May 2000 for his alleged involvement in laundering drug money. He worked as an undercover informant for the DEA for the next 12 years, pleading guilty to stealing 50 kilos of the cocaine he allegedly helped agents seize, worth around $1 million.

Released from prison in 2016, Jaar was deported to Haiti.

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