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Vybz Kartel denied bail as he awaits retrial decision

Vybz Kartel poses during a picture in prison.

Revered dancehall star, Adidja Palmer, better known as Vybz Kartel, remains locked up after a judge denied a bail application for him and his co-accused.

On Thursday, Supreme Court Justice Andrea Thomas rejected the habeas corpus application on behalf of Palmer. She also denied similar applications for Palmer’s former Portmore Empire protégé, Shawn “Shawn Storm” Campbell and Andre St. John. The bail hearing took place at the Supreme Court in downtown Kingston.

Justice Thomas told the courtroom that because “their appeal is not yet determined they should remain in custody until their appeal is concluded.” This is after the Privy Council quashed the trio’s conviction for the 2011 murder of Clive “Lizard” Williams in March. Palmer and his co-accused continue to wait for a decision on a potential retrial. Thomas said they must remain in prison “until a verdict of acquittal is entered or there is a decision for a retrial.”

Palmer’s attorney, Isat Buchanan, arguing Palmer and his co-accused were illegally detained without a conviction. However, Thomas ruled that no breaches occurred.

A jury convicted Vybz Kartel in 2014 for the death of Williams in Havendale. Prosecutors alleged Kartel and his co-accused killed Williams following a confrontation before burning his body. The men received varying life sentences for the murder, with parole eligibility. However, they appealed to the local courts before a last-ditch attempt to overturn the conviction via the U.K.-based Privy Council proved successful.

 

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Written by Jodee Brown

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