Monday, January 24, 2011

Why did Duvalier return this time?

Much speculations arose why the surprise arrival of former dictator Jean-Claude "Baby Doc" Duvalier to Haiti last week amid the dispute who will succeed incumbent President René Garcia Préval.
The BBC said analysts and lawyers think that the former strongman is trying to prevent Switzerland's attempts to return $6 million of his ill gotten-wealth back to Haiti.
To take effect on 1 February is the new Swiss law that says the money from his frozen bank accounts can be donated to Haiti even if the country has not made a legal move to sequester them, the report said.
Observers said that Duvalier, who ruled between 1971 and 1986, inaccurately predicted that he can escape prosecution.
Human Rights Watch lawyer Reed Brody said, "If Duvalier goes back to Haiti and is not prosecuted, then he could say 'I was available for prosecution, and you didn't prosecute me: Give me my money back.'"
Préval said "Duvalier had the right to return to the country, but under the constitution, he also must face justice."
"If Duvalier is not in prison now, it is because he has not yet been tried."
The 59-year-old dictator is facing charges for theft and fund misappropriation. He is being sued for torture and other crimes against humanity.
Duvalier apologized and called for national reconciliation during his speech in a news conference on Friday. He claims that he wants to rebuild his country that was devastated by the earthquake and that he is ready to face the charges.
The former dictator is not allowed to leave the country pending the result of investigations for his alleged crimes, according to Préval.
Details of this story found on this link.

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