More bad 'Vybz' for Kartel

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More bad 'Vybz' for Kartel

Still no bail for popular entertainer

Tanesha Mundle

Saturday, October 15, 2011

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CONTROVERSIAL dancehall entertainer, Vybz Kartel, was yesterday left disappointed after his bail application failed to materialise in the Corporate Area Resident Magistrate's Court, resulting in a further extension of his stay behind bars.

The entertainer, whose real name is Adidja Palmer, made his second appearance in the Gun Court Division of the court on murder, conspiracy to murder, and illegal possession of a firearm charges. However, he was remanded into custody after his lawyers, Tom and Chris Tavares-Finson along with Michael Deans were forced to defer the application due to the absence of a witness statement. Kartel is scheduled to return to court on October 26.

The deejay has been charged in connection with the July 12 murder of Barrington 'Bossie' Burton, a 27-year-old businessman/promoter of a Gregory Park address in St Catherine. Burton was reportedly killed while standing with friends along Walker's Avenue in Gregory Park.

Nigel Thomas and Lainberg McDonald, who are jointly charged with the entertainer, were also remanded into custody.

Kartel wore a defeated look on his face when he was escorted into the courtroom and out some three minutes later.

Shortly after, his attorney Chris Tavares-Finson told the media that the entertainer's legal team could not apply for bail without being served with a copy of the witness statement, as they needed to know what was in the statement before making the application.

"The defence went into court today expecting an indication as to whether or not the document that we have been hearing about, if it exists. If it exists it must be served on the defence but that document was not served and there was no indication whether or not it exists," he said.

However, the lawyer said that the magistrate made an order for the police to retrieve the document from Public Defender Earl Witter and to serve it on the defence before the next court date.

Meanwhile, supporters of the artiste — who had started gathering outside the courthouse from minutes after 10:00 am — later converged at the entrance to the Half-Way-Tree Police Station in hopes of getting a better glimpse of him. Walking with portraits of the artiste, the supporters called out for his freedom as curious bystanders looked on.

Kartel's common-law wife, who goes by the name 'Shorty' and who was on the verge of tears when she learnt that he was further remanded into custody, tried to put on brave face.

"I am not feeling good, but at the end of the day good things come to those who wait and at the end of the day him affi get bail," she responded when asked how she was coping.

Kartel, who was arrested on September 30 at a hotel in New Kingston by police from the Flying Squad, is also charged for 4.3 ounces of ganja found at the premises. However, he pleaded not guilty to possession of ganja and is expected to return to court on November 10.

His co-accused, Alicia Jackson, last Friday pleaded guilty to the charge and was fined $500 or 30 days in jail. She paid the fine.

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