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Deposed president returns to Haiti

Jan. 19, 2011 at 9:44 PM   |   Comments

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, Jan. 19 (UPI) -- Former Haitian dictator Jean-Claude Duvalier, who returned to Haiti this week after 25 years in exile, has no intention of leaving, his lawyer said.

"Baby-Doc" Duvalier succeeded his father, Francois, who had dubbed himself president for life and died in 1971. The younger Duvalier left Haiti after being deposed in 1986.

After arriving in Port-au-Prince this week he indicated he intends to return to politics despite charges of financial corruption and human rights abuse awaiting him, CNN reported.

Duvalier, who has lived in France for 25 years, faces charges connected to embezzlement of Haitian money for his own gain. A judge will have 30 days to decide whether to move forward with a case against Duvalier, CNN reported.

"If he wants to live in this country, that's his right. He is back to stay. He can do politics. He can come and go, do whatever he pleases as long as it is legal," Duvalier's lawyer, Reynold Georges, said in response to the judge's question whether Duvalier was planning to leave.

Human rights groups want Duvalier prosecuted for brutality during his years in power. Thousands of Haitians were tortured and killed and hundreds of thousands fled the country, Human Rights Watch said.

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