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Buju Banton’s gun conviction overturned by US judge

The prosecution now has the option of refiling the charges against the Jamaican entertainer who was jailed on drug related charges in 2011. Photo: caribbean 360
Caribbean 360

FLORIDA, United States – A judge has overturned the gun possession conviction against Jamaican singer Buju Banton, ruling that thee was a case of jury misconduct.

Banton, whose real name is Mark Myrie, had returned to court to get a new trial following revelations that a juror had researched an aspect of the law during the trial.

Judge James S. Moody Jr, sitting in the US District Court, also recommended the filing of criminal contempt charges against the juror.

His ruling follows allegations that juror Terri Wright conducted improper research during the 2011 trial.

A South Florida newspaper, Miami New Times, reported that Wright, who was the jury forewoman, admitted to doing independent Internet research during the trial. But the juror said she had been misunderstood by the reporter and that her research had been done after the trial.

Banton’s lawyers had argued that such research would be grounds for a new trial.

Legal observers say the prosecution now has the option of refiling the gun possession charges against Buju who was given a 10-year jail term in 2011 on drug related charges.

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