September 5, 2023
The press freedom organization SOS Journalistes is concerned about death threats against Judge Robert Jourdain, who investigating the 2022 killing of Haitian journalist Gary Tess in the southern city of Les Cayes, said its secretary general Joseph Guyler C. Delva.
Tess, who hosted a political program on Radio Lebon FM, had been reported missing on Tuesday October 18, and his lifeless body was discovered almost a week later, on October 24, just outside Les Cayes.
SOS Journalists called on Prime Minister Ariel Henry and Minister of Justice Emmelie Prophète-Milcé to take administrative and security measures necessary for the protection of Judge Jourdain, currently under heavy and persistent death threats.
According to the statement, SOS Journalists learned that a request for recusal of the judge has been addressed to the Court of Cassation, Haiti's highest judicial body. The press freedom group also urged the Court of Cassation to allow Judge Jourdain to conclude his investigation, in due form and within a reasonable time.
At the same time, SOS Journalistes reiterated its call for the immediate release of journalist Guerlan Hyppolite, who has been imprisoned for more than eight months in Les Cayes prison, still in connection with the Gary Tess case, without there being any indication of any participation on his part in a criminal act.