Missionary Daniel Pye has called Haiti home for eight years, running an orphanage and distributing necessities the Haitian people desperately needed well before the earthquake of January 2010. Five months ago, in Jacmel, Daniel was arrested and falsely imprisoned without charge. He shared a 10’ x 12’ prison cell with twenty-four other men.
Haitians participate in a day of prayer at Champs du Mars in Port-au-Prince in January.
Throughout the ordeal, Danielwas separated from his pregnant wife and daughter while experiencing all the inhumane horrors of a third world, post-natural disaster prison.
But Danny is a free man today. Less than one week after the ACLJ became involved in his case, Danny was released from prison, just days before his wife is due to give birth to their second child.
In October, Danny was involved in a property dispute that was quickly settled in civil court. After both parties reached an agreement in the case, the judge inexplicably ordered Danny’s arrest. The reason for Danny’s arrest? According to Haitian attorney Osner Fevry, who represented the Pyes pro bono: “Daniel Pye helped an organization rent … a hotel or guest house, and (the judge) was living in the place and … was forced to leave.” Simply put, this was the judge’s personal vendetta.
Leann Pye, Danny’s wife, who returned to the U.S. for maternity care, worked to secure her husband’s release from prison and he walked away a free man on Christmas Eve. But the same judge had Danny immediately rearrested and held without charge.
Last Friday, Leann contacted the ACLJ and we began working with officials in Washington and Danny’s attorney in Haiti to secure his release.
The fact that Danny was detained and held for months in jail with no charges of any kind is very troubling and points to a judicial system in Haiti is badly in need of reform. We are pleased that we were able to assist in a team effort in this country and in Haiti that has resulted in his release.
Danny and his family plan to return to Haiti to continue working with orphans there. At the ACLJ, we will continue to fight for the right of people like Danny who serve God by working with the poor and destitute around the world.
We did not know at the time we took his case that Danny assisted the ACLJ’s relief efforts in Haiti. After the earthquake, we spent about a week on radio raising funds for an organization called Conduit Mision. Danny personally guided planes into the Jacmel airport so that the supplies ACLJ donors purchased could be delivered to the people and organizations in need.
The devotion of this family to the people of Haiti is an example of Christianity at its best. To find out more about this family, check out their blog.