Nov 18, 2012
Buju’s legal team aims new letter writing campaign at U.S. Supreme Court
The legal team for Dancehall superstar, Buju Banton continues to pull out all the stops in their fight to secure the embattled entertainer’s freedom as they have launched a new campaign targeting the United States Supreme Court.
Chokwe Lumumba, Buju’s lead lawyer, has spearheaded a new letter writing campaign set to raise awareness about the Grammy-winning singjay’s drug case. The campaign also re-affirms their stance that the entertainer should be released from federal prison.
In a letter to the U.S. Supreme Court released on Wednesday, Lumumba indicated that Buju has filed a petition for a Writ of Certiorari, seeking a review and reversal of his conviction and subsequent 10-year sentencing on drug charges, stemming from a December 2009 incident in Florida.
Part of said letter read, “The convictions of Mr. Myrie are outrageous and unjust. Mr. Myrie was the victim of a concerted U.S. government effort to entrap, conducted by a corrupt informant who was paid 3.5 million dollars by the government for his services in various cases over the years.”
It continued, “He has never been convicted of a crime prior to the present case. He has helped feed numerous hungry children in his country and otherwise contributed to worthy causes in Jamaica and elsewhere. He is supported by hundreds of thousands and perhaps millions worldwide. I ask this honorable court to review his case and grant Mark Myrie the relief he deserves.”
These moves follow a recent discussion dubbed the Free Buju Press Conference that was held a day before the U.S. presidential elections (November 5). The conference, organized by Lumumba and the Buju Banton Defense Support Committee, was moderated by University of the West Indies (UWI) lecturer, Dr. Carolyn Cooper. It featured several guest speakers, including prominent entertainers, Stephen Marley and Gramps Morgan as well as NAACP Prison Committee chairman, Nkechi Taifa and Vice-Chairman of the National Black United Front, Salim Adafo, amongst other reputable figures.
Lumumba addressed conference attendees, claiming that Buju Banton is a ‘political prisoner,’ while adding, “There is a generational gap between the struggle to free political prisoners and the struggles of young people. [Buju is helping] to keep the act of freeing political prisoners a relevant one to all generations that exist right now.”
Buju Banton remains housed in the Pinellas County Jail, based in Clearwater, FL as he awaits re-sentencing on a gun charge in the drug case. The re-sentencing was postponed on October 30 as law enforcement officials review allegations that a juror in Buju’s February 2011 trial admitted to reviewing facts of the case before deliberation. If proven true, the juror violation could constitute a mistrial.
For those who wish to write a letter to the U.S. Supreme Court in support of the Free Buju Campaign, send your mail to the address below.
United States Supreme Court
C/O Attorney Chokwe Lumumba
440 N. Mill St.
Jackson, Mississippi 39202