Vybz Kartel the popular dancehall star lost his appeal against his murder conviction. After almost a two-year wait, the Court of Appeal handed down a judgment affirming the murder conviction of the popular entertainer and his co-accused this morning.
The convictions and sentences for dancehall artiste Shawn Storm and two other men, Kahira Jones and Andre St John were also upheld by the Court.
The decision by the Appeal Court was handed down via a conference call between the panel of three judges, the prosecutors and the lawyers for the four convicted men.
With the ban on public gatherings, as part of the measures to reduce the spread of the coronavirus, President of the Court of Appeal Justice Dennis Morrison, Frank Williams and Patrick Brooks heard the appeal.
On the 3rd of April 2014, Vybz Kartel, whose given name is Adidja Palmer, Shawn Storm, given name Shawn Campbell, Jones and St John were convicted for the killing of Clive ‘Lizard’ Williams at a house in Havendale, St Andrew in August 2011.
At 7 minutes to 10 am on Friday, April 3rd, 2020 Vybz Kartel and his co-accused had their appeals dismissed. Justice Morrison handed down the convictions after a unanimous decision on the part of the Judges.
The time that the men spent before the sentence was handed down should be deducted from their sentence.
They won’t stop here, Kartel’s team is expected to carry out more appeal submissions in relation to the sentencing. Valerie Neita Robertson one of the attorneys who represented Vybz Kartel was confident and said there is no guarantee that there will be a success in the future and anyone who goes to the Privy Council is prepared for that.
It will take a year or more and they are watching to see if the Covid-19 crisis will clear up in time. It is not an easy case and there are 14 grounds of appeal and every appeal had case law to support it. It has been one of the longest cases on the island.
The prosecution won’t normally claim a victory, Kartel will need to pay millions more to seek his route to freedom. The trial took place in the Supreme Court and it might then go to the Court of Appeal and when 3 eyes look at it in Jamaica it can then go to the Privy Council in the UK.
Valerie Neita Headley warned people to stay calm and stay off the streets during this time.