However, friends of the Florida-based doctor insisted to The Associated Press that he must have been duped and would never have taken part had he known Moïse was to be killed in last week’s attack that also critically injured the first lady.
Dr. Christian Sanon is also an Evangelical pastor who believed he was on “a mission to save Haiti from hell.”christiansanon.org
“I guarantee you that,” one close associate in Florida told the wire service.
“This was supposed to be a mission to save Haiti from hell, with support from the US government.”
Friends of the Christian Sanon insisted that he must have been duped and would never have taken part had he known President Jovenel Moïse was to be killed.Getty Images
Sanon is a licensed physician in Haiti, but not in the US, the friend said, saying he is instead a devoted evangelical Christian pastor.
Sanon “is completely gullible,” the associate added. “He thinks God is going to save everything.”
“I know the character of the man,” Rev. Larry Caldwell, a Florida pastor who worked with Sanon setting up churches and medical clinics in Haiti in 2000-2010.
Haitian forces run through the streets of Port-au-Prince.Getty Images
“You take a man like that and you’re then going to say he participated in a brutal crime of murder, knowing that being associated with that would send him to the pits of hell?
“If there was one man who would be willing to stand in the breach to help his country, it would be Christian.”
Economist Parnell Duverger told The Washington Post he has known Sanon since 2016 and found him “sincere about transforming Haiti into a better economy and a better society.”
The Haitian National Police reported that so far six people were arrested for their alleged involvement in the assassination of President Jovenel Moise.EPAPolice detain a suspect tied to the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse.EPAWeaponry, mobile phones, passports and other items were confiscated from the assassination suspects.REUTERS
When he learned of Sanon’s arrest, he wrote and circulated a letter defending him as “a good doctor who also doubles up as a pastor and leader of a vast network of about 300 Christian churches throughout the United States.”
He also told the paper he doesn’t believe the government’s allegations. “Politics has become a brutal sport in that country, and you’d be surprised how fast you can be a victim of character assassination,” Duverger said.
Haiti’s National Police chief, Léon Charles, said Moïse’s killers were protecting Sanon, whom he accused of working with those who plotted the assassination.
Haiti’s National Police chief said President Moïse’s killers were protecting Christian Sanon.AFP via Getty Images
Charles said officers found a hat with the logo of the US Drug Enforcement Administration, 20 boxes of bullets, gun parts, four license plates from the Dominican Republic, two cars and correspondence, among other things, in Sanon’s house in Haiti.
Sanon was also linked to the security firm believed to have recruited the killers, who told police they thought they were being hired to protect Sanon before the orders were switched to arrest Moise.
Charles said that after Moïse was killed, one suspect called Sanon, who got in touch with two people believed to be masterminds of the plot. He did not identify the masterminds or say if police know who they are.
Christian Sanon is linked to the security firm believed to have recruited the killers.
Sanon’s associate, however, insisted to the AP that the pastor had called him from Haiti a few days before the assassination and said the Colombians had disappeared.
“I’m all by myself. Who are these people? I don’t know what they are doing,” the associate quoted Sanon as saying, insisting he had been duped.