Former Colombian soldier and mercenary German Rivera has pleaded guilty to the murder of then-Haitian President Jovenel Moise, a crime committed in July 2021 in Port-au-Prince, the capital of the Caribbean nation. Investigations into the motivations behind the assassination continue as the president was gunned down at his official residence in the Haitian capital, and his wife was also injured in the attack.
After two years of investigation, a group of 28 foreign mercenaries, 26 of them Colombian, were arrested and are awaiting trial. The main suspect in recruiting and leading the group is former military officer German Rivera, who initially pleaded not guilty to the charges. Today, the mercenary has changed his stance and pleaded guilty as part of a collaboration strategy with the justice system, in the hope of obtaining penal benefits.
A Caribbean Assassination
Haiti is the poorest country in the Americas. Plagued by longstanding economic difficulties, the country experienced a national tragedy in January 2010 when a devastating earthquake struck. The natural disaster resulted in over 315,000 deaths, 350,000 injuries, and over 1.5 million people left homeless.
That earthquake was one of the most significant natural disasters in recent memory, further devastating a country already facing severe social and economic problems.
Moise assumed the presidency of the country in 2017. Two years later, he had to contend with significant social protests due to high inflation and currency devaluation, which wreaked havoc on the already fragile local economy.
The assassination of the Haitian president remains shrouded in mystery. However, it is now known that the private security company CTU Security, based in Miami (USA), was responsible for hiring the mercenaries. The company is headed by Venezuelan opposition politician Antonio Enmanuel Intriago Valera. The justice system suspects that the intellectual authors are a Haitian doctor residing in the USA and a former official from Haiti’s Ministry of Justice, with the collaboration of a Canadian resident who is still wanted by the authorities.
The group responsible for the operation was led by Colombian German Rivera.
Rivera’s Change of Strategy
In information reported by The New York Times, in the trial being conducted in the USA, a spokesperson for the federal prosecutor’s office handling the case announced that the former Colombian military officer intended to plead guilty.
“I am writing to inform you that Mr. German Rivera has decided to plead guilty,” said Sarah Schall, spokesperson for the Southern District of Florida prosecutor’s office, to the American newspaper.
Rivera, 45, is charged with “conspiracy to commit murder or kidnapping outside the territory of the United States.” The hearing is scheduled for Thursday, September 7, and it is during this session that the Colombian is expected to confess and accept the charges.
This marks a 180-degree turn in the accused’s strategy, as he will now cooperate with the prosecution. When he was arrested, Rivera claimed that everything was part of a conspiracy by the CIA and American intelligence services. He declared that he felt betrayed and was a victim of a trap.