Monday, January 18, 2021

Retired US Army colonel convicted in Haitian bribery scheme

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A retired U.S. Army colonel has been convicted by a federal jury of conspiring to bribe Haitian government officials.

Federal prosecutors in Boston say 64-year-old Joseph Baptiste, of Fulton, Maryland was one of two men convicted Thursday. The other was 74-year-old Roger Richard Boncy, a dual U.S. and Haitian citizen who lives in Madrid, Spain.

Prosecutors say Baptiste and Boncy solicited bribes from undercover federal agents who posed as potential investors in a proposed $84 million port project in the Mole-Saint-Nicolas area of Haiti. Boncy and Baptiste told agents they would funnel the payments to Haitian officials through a nonprofit Baptiste controlled that purported to help impoverished residents of Haiti.

Baptiste is a dentist who served 23 years in the Army.

Sentencing for both men is scheduled for Sept. 12.

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