MIAMI - An ex-Haiti rebel leader was sentenced Wednesday in Miami to nine years in prison for money laundering in connection with an international narcotics scheme.
Guy Philippe, 49, previously pleaded guilty to the charge after he was arrested in January as he appeared live on a radio talk show in Haiti.
Philippe, who had recently been elected to the Haitian Senate when he was arrested, was being interviewed on the show with another recently elected lawmaker when the host abruptly announced that police were outside the studio in the Petionville district of the capital to arrest him.
The host came back on air and said authorities had taken Philippe away.
The Department of Justice said in a news release that Philippe committed money laundering by receiving cash payments derived from the proceeds of drug sales that occurred in Miami and elsewhere in the U.S. from the late 1990s to the early 2000s.
Authorities said Philippe used his position as a high-ranking Haitian National police officer to provide protection for the shipments of cocaine and drug proceeds arriving in Haiti in exchange for cash payments.
Authorities said Philippe confessed to sharing a portion of the payments with Haitian National Police officials and other security personnel to ensure their continued support for future drug shipments arriving into Haiti.
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