DATELINE: PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, Nov. 3
A judge said Friday that he had ordered a top Haitian police chief arrested on suspicion of conspiring with kidnappers.
Judge Napela Saintil said a warrant for the arrest of the chief, Inspector General Michael Lucius, was now in the hands of a prosecutor because he had ignored a summons.
Mr. Lucius, barred from leaving Haiti, is in charge of units fighting organized crime and is the lead officer in the fight against kidnapping, drugs and gangs. He has denied accusations of having ties to kidnappers.
”I am ready to appear before a judge, but not Napela Saintil because he is biased against me,” he said.
Mr. Lucius has not gone into hiding and travels around Port-au-Prince surrounded by police guards.
Haiti’s police force is riddled with corruption and poorly equipped.
Several suspected kidnappers have said they worked with Mr. Lucius and shared ransom payments with him. Mr. Lucius has been accused of providing weapons in a scheme to use gangsters to dismantle criminal gangs.
His lawyer, Samuel Madistin, said the allegations were unfounded.