Judge approves company for Buju's security but...

BY PAUL HENRY Crime/Court Co-ordinator henryp@jamaicaobserver.com

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Print this page Email A Friend!




UNITED STATES Magistrate Anthony Porcelli yesterday approved a security company that Jamaican Reggae star Buju Banton has expressed an interest in contracting to provide him with 24-hour security as part of his bail condition.


Porcelli has also approved the $350,000 Miami property put up by Stephen Marley, the son of Reggae legend Bob Marley, as collateral for Banton's bond.


But despite the development in the Sam M Gibbons federal court, Banton will have to remain in jail as the prosecution will be appealing Porcelli's decision to approve the security company the Jamaican artiste wants to hire to ensure he sticks to the previous conditions of his house arrest.


The prosecution has five days to file its appeal.


Banton's lead attorney, David Oscar Markus, was yesterday livid at what he said was the repeated attempts by Prosecutor James Preston to keep his client behind bars.


"The Government's dogged attempt to keep Buju behind bars is disheartening," Markus told the Observer.


Banton has been in jail since last December, following his arrest at his Tamarac South Florida home. He was granted $250,000 bail earlier this month after a panel of 12 jurors failed to reach a verdict in his drug and weapon trial in September.


As part of his bail condition, Banton, whose real name is Mark Anthony Myrie, will be placed under house arrest and will be required to wear a tracking device, pending the outcome of his retrial in December.


If released, Banton will have to remain at home other than when he wants to purchase medication, see his attorney or attend court.


Yesterday, attorney Marc Seitles, who handled the hearing on Banton's behalf, was delighted at the outcome.


"We achieved a bond today and we are happy that Judge Porcelli reaffirmed that Buju is entitled to be released on bond," said Seitles.


If Banton successfully beats back the appeal, he will have to seek another bond in the immigration court as his entertainment visa was revoked upon his arrest.


Banton is facing a charge of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute five kilogrammes of cocaine and possession of a weapon during the furtherance of a crime. His two co-defendants, Ian Thomas and James Mack, have both pleaded guilty and will be sentenced next month.


ADVERTISEMENT




POST A COMMENT

HOUSE RULES

1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper � email addresses will not be published.

2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.

3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.

4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.

5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed: advertising@jamaicaobserver.com.

6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email: community@jamaicaobserver.com.

7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy



comments powered by Disqus
ADVERTISEMENT

Poll

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Today's Cartoon

Click image to view full size editorial cartoon
ADVERTISEMENT