11.2 C
New York

Fears YouTube star YourFellowArab ‘kidnapped by Haiti gang for £475,000 ransom’ as he vanishes from social media

Published:

A YOUTUBE star has allegedly been kidnapped by a gang in Haiti and is being held for a ransom of £475,000, his pals have claimed.

Addison Pierre Maalouf, who goes by YourFellowArab on social media, had reportedly travelled to the violence-stricken country to interview infamous warlord Jimmy “Barbecue” Cherizier before going missing.

Addison Pierre Maalouf, who goes by YourFellowArab on social media, is of Lebanese descent and based in Atlanta, Georgia

6

Addison Pierre Maalouf, who goes by YourFellowArab on social media, is of Lebanese descent and based in Atlanta, GeorgiaCredit: @YourFellowArab/X
The YouTuber had reportedly flown to Haiti in one of his latest work ventures

6

The YouTuber had reportedly flown to Haiti in one of his latest work venturesCredit: @YourFellowArab/X
Maalouf was allegedly meant to interview infamous warlord Jimmy 'Barbecue' Cherizier (pictured)

6

Maalouf was allegedly meant to interview infamous warlord Jimmy ‘Barbecue’ Cherizier (pictured)Credit: Reuters
Violence in Port-au-Prince has reached unprecedented levels and hundreds of thousands of civilians have been caught in the crossfires

6

Violence in Port-au-Prince has reached unprecedented levels and hundreds of thousands of civilians have been caught in the crossfiresCredit: AFP

The Sun has approached the US Embassy in London and Port-Au-Prince, as well as YourFellowArab’s team for comment.

A spokesperson for the US  State Department Bureau of Consular Affairs told The Sun: “The US Department of State and our embassies and consulates abroad have no higher priority than the safety and security of US citizens overseas.

“We are aware of reports of the kidnapping of a US citizen in Haiti.

“We reiterate our message to US citizens: Do not travel to Haiti.”

Maalouf, who is of Lebanese descent and based in Atlanta, often creates videos where he investigates the ins and outs of criminals and gangs around the world.

His Instagram profile describes the video creator as a “traveller, comedian [and] storyteller”.

But the influencer has not posted anything since March 12 on his Twitter/X account.

His Instagram feed has remained untouched since July last year, when he posed with gun-wielding criminals in Rio de Janeiro.

One of Maalouf’s pals, Twitch streamer Lalem, has claimed in an X post that his friend had been taken hostage.

He wrote: “Tried keeping it private for 2 weeks, but it’s getting out everywhere now.

“Yes, Arab has been kidnapped in Haiti and we’re working on getting him out. Love y’all he’ll be out soon.”

Lalem also shared Maalouf’s previous video, which showed him in Haiti.

Haiti warlord Barbecue warns ‘more bloodshed coming’ in ‘world’s most dangerous city’ & tells foreign troops to back off

In the clip, Maalouf can be seen warning viewers about being in the country at this time following weeks of gang-led violence.

The YouTuber then says that his group wanted to go to Haiti’s capital, Port-au-Prince, but were waiting to leave in the early morning so that they could arrive in daylight.

“All it takes is one stupid gang member holding an AK-47 for one thing to go wrong,” he reportedly told his followers. 

Lalem also asked those with Maalouf’s phone number not to text him for his own safety. 

Maalouf is now allegedly being held for a ransom of $600,000 (£475,482), with $40,000 (£31,700) already paid.

Unconfirmed reports claim that on March 14, the YouTuber was taken by a gang known as the 400 Mawozo, Haiti24 reports.

Its leader, kingpin Lanmo Sanjou, is on the FBI most wanted list. 

The Bureau is offering a $1 million reward for information that leads to his arrest.

He is suspected of kidnapping 17 Christian missionaries in Haiti, including five infants, one as young as eight months old, in October 2021.

As a result of the crime, he faces charges of conspiracy to commit hostage kidnapping and hostage-taking in the United States.

The Haitian outlet reports that Maalouf, described as an “American journalist”, was allegedly returning from Cap-Haïtien, some 124 miles north of Port-au-Prince, with a local friend.

He had allegedly been in the capital’s Delmas 6 commune to interview Jimmy “Barbecue” Cherizier, the infamous gang leader at the eye of the violent storm in Port-au-Prince.

According to Haiti24, around $40,000 (£31,715) has allegedly been paid so far to the kidnappers.

Prior to his trip, the American YouTube star had tweeted: “Going on another one of those trips. If I die, thanks for watching what I’ve put out. If I live, all glory to God.”

Coming storm

It comes as warlord Jimmy “Barbecue” Cherizier has said more bloodshed is coming to Haiti and told foreign troops to back off in a chilling warning.

Rumoured to have earned his nickname for setting his victims on fire, Barbecue is at the eye of the storm as the capital spirals into an all-out civil war.

The vicious kingpin has now said that a recent halt in the fighting is merely a technical pause.

“There is nothing calm, but when you’re fighting you have to know when to advance and when to retreat,” he told Sky News.

“I think every day that passes we are coming up with a new strategy so we can advance, but there’s nothing calm.

“In the days that are coming things will get worse than they are now…”

The Haiti warlord added that he would consider a ceasefire, as well as peace and political talks, as long as him and his gangs are included in the process.

He said: “If the international community comes with a detailed plan where we can sit together and talk, but they do not impose on us what we should decide, I think that the weapons could be lowered.

“We don’t believe in killing people and massacring people, we believe in dialogue, we have weapons in our hand and it’s with the weapons that we must liberate this country.

“At the moment we haven’t got to the point where we should put down our weapons, because the people here don’t want to listen to reason.

“We have been hearing about dialogue for more than two or three years.”

Former police officer Barbecue has warned that more violence is imminent in the Caribbean country

6

Former police officer Barbecue has warned that more violence is imminent in the Caribbean countryCredit: Reuters
Port-au-Prince has become a bloody warzone following weeks of gang-led violence

6

Port-au-Prince has become a bloody warzone following weeks of gang-led violenceCredit: Reuters

Related articles

Recent articles

spot_img