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Neglected by the Spanish authorities, the region of what is known today as Port-au-Prince was encroached by French boucaniers around 1670. Even when the western part of Hispaniola was officially transferred to the French, the region did not immediately emerge as an important part of Saint-Domingue. The port of the town was not as developed as other ports in the colony. Not being the main focus of the island, the town attracted pirates who were passing through while on the run from authorities who were chasing them.