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According to a source, the doctor accused of plotting the assassination of the president of Haiti was planning his entry into national politics

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The political effort never included a plan for a violent overthrow, the people involved said. Two men who attended meetings with Sanon called him a thoughtful politician with a real interest in improving the country. And a letter sent to a senior U.S. State Department official in late May outlined a serious project that had the support of Haitian leaders who “represent about 80 percent of the population.”

But according to Colombian and Haitian authorities, Sanon had a secret plan B. Haitian police allege that Sanon recruited the more than two dozen men who stormed the residence of Jovenel Moise, the assassinated president, in an attempt of taking power.

Sanon met in May with two Colombian commandos at the helm of the operation, the Colombian police chief said Thursday, and the group’s original plan was to detain the president and hand him over to the Colombian Drug Enforcement Agency. United States.

Sanon was arrested over the weekend in Haiti in a raid on a house where, according to a source close to the investigation who is not allowed to discuss the incident, police recovered boxes of ammunition, 24 unused shots and a lid labeled “DEA.” “Sanon told police he was unaware of the attack, CNN reported Wednesday. CNN has not been able to contact Sanon or other detainees since the murder.

The murder and intrigue surrounding the police investigation reads like a novel compared to the political campaign that led Sanon above the council, said people involved in the political process.

In an interview Wednesday, Parnell Duverger, an economist and former Florida university professor, said he attended several online meetings beginning in 2020 where Sanon and a group of other Haitian experts drew up an agenda for a transitional government. in which Sanon would act as prime minister. .

According to Durverger, Sanon told the group he had the support of the United States and the international community in its commitment to leadership, although he did not provide evidence to support that claim.

The group operated on the assumption that the Haitian president would eventually resign as protests erupted in the country, leading to the interim government, Duverger said. There was never any talk of a coup attempt, he said.

“The Zoom meetings brought together, in my opinion, an assortment of specialists and good people who had a lot of knowledge in their field, whether agriculture or education, who have it very well, and who really worked out a government agenda that would be quite successful if implemented, ”Duverger said.

Other sessions took place in person. A meeting in downtown Fort Lauderdale, Florida, which Duverger said he believed took place in early May, was attended by Antonino Intriago and Walter Veintemilla, two men authorities say have played key roles in recent days. in the murder.

Intriago, a Venezuelan living in South Florida, runs the security firm that police said he provided to the men who carried out the murder. Sanon had hired CTU, the firm, to recruit the men, authorities said. CNN has been unable to reach CTU and Intriago.

Veinemilla, according to corporate records in Florida, is the president of the Worldwide Capital Lending Group, a company that police in Haiti said Wednesday helped “raise money so men could carry out the events.”

In a statement sent to CNN on Thursday, Worldwide Capital Lending Group denied any involvement in the plot, saying Sanon, as well as current and former elected officials in Haiti, had approached him “to help obtain funding for power plants and other infrastructure projects in Haiti. “

“At no time in any meeting or conversation with Dr. Sanon or any of his representatives was there any mention, discussion or suggestion of a murder plot against President Moise or the intention to use force to bring about a change of leadership in Haiti, “the company said.

“Contrary to certain media reports, no representative of Worldwide Capital Lending Group attended meetings in the Dominican Republic or Haiti at any time,” the company added.

Duverger said the meeting in Fort Lauderdale was held to discuss “financing the construction of the infrastructure needed for Haiti to achieve sustainable economic development in 30 years or less.”

The New York Times was the first to report on Sanon’s political campaign meetings.

Earlier this year, Sanon changed his plan and allegedly told the group he wanted to become president of Haiti instead of being prime minister, according to Duverger.

Several linked to the Haitian assassination plot were former US law enforcement informants

The plan was detailed in a letter to a senior State Department official in late May.

Signed “The People of Haiti,” the letter was sent to an now-defunct website that defends Sanon’s leadership in a transitional government and warns of an impending crisis at the hands of Moise.

“Moise has shown that he intends to use his power, intimidation and brutality on a large scale to expand and extend his control of Haiti by establishing a new‘ Constitution ’in a few weeks,” the letter first reported for DailyMail .as it says. “We pray this doesn’t happen, but time is running out; as you know, a ‘fuse’ has been burning since February 7! Something needs to be done soon.”

A State Department spokesman referred CNN to Haitian authorities for comment on the investigation, but added that “they receive a regular flow of correspondence.”

“We actively participate with Haitian-American individuals and groups in off-record conversations. We also receive a regular flow of correspondence,” the spokesman said.

“We have long supported Haitian political leaders and civil society coming together to strengthen democratic institutions and reach an inclusive solution that facilitates peace and stability,” they said.

There are indications that the support for Sanon described on the website and in the letter may have been exaggerated. A United Nations consultant featured in a prominent spot on the website as part of a coalition in support of the doctor’s management said in an interview that he was unaware of his presence at the site and that he had met with Sanon a time.

Frantz Gilot, the consultant, said he discussed issues related to criminal justice in Haiti at a January meeting with Sanon and more than twenty others involved in the political effort.

But he said he was “not interested” in the project.

“Someone put my name on this site,” he said. “I’m not a supporter of Mr. Sanon or his team.”

An official with the UN mission in Haiti is also shown to be a supporter of Sanon. The messages left by the officer were not answered.

Duverger said Zoom’s regular meetings stopped earlier this year. At the time, Sanon’s desire to lead and improve Haiti seemed real, he said. But with the news of Sanon’s murder and arrest, his opinion has changed.

“Right now, I don’t believe anything in this man’s mouth. I think they were all taking us for a walk,” Duverger said.

CNN’s Jennifer Hansler contributed to this report.

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