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U.S. Commander in Haiti Reportedly Knew of Assassination Plot

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Gen. George A. Fisher, the U.S. military commander here, knew at least 10 days before Mireille Durocher was murdered that the outspoken anti-government figure was the target of a serious assassination plot allegedly involving Haitian Interior Minister Mondesir Beaubrun, American and Haitian sources said Wednesday.

These officials said Fisher wrote to President Jean-Bertrand Aristide’s government, outlining the plot. As a result, Justice Minister Jean-Joseph Exume called Durocher in and told her that U.S. military intelligence believed she was in real danger. Although advised “to take all precautions,” she did not get protection from U.S. or Haitian forces, the sources said.

Haitian sources also said Beaubrun was questioned about reports of his involvement. The sources indicated that he denied any part in the plan and was allowed to remain in office.

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Although no action was taken against Beaubrun, a retired Haitian military officer, at least two other Haitians, including a translator working for the U.S. military, were arrested and several high-powered assault weapons and radios were seized, the sources said.

Durocher, 38, was a lawyer closely linked to former Lt. Gen. Raoul Cedras, the Haitian army commander who led the September, 1991, coup that overthrew Aristide. She also served as chief of staff for Emile Jonassaint, the puppet civilian president installed by Cedras in 1994.

Sources said her Tuesday assassination was the work of professional killers who stalked her using several cars and radios. Her passenger, Junior Baillerjeaux--a client of Jean Bertin, her husband and an attorney--was also killed.

Bertin said on Haitian radio that his late wife had received several death threats in recent weeks and had taken precautions.


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