Dancehall/Reggae superstar, Buju Banton who is currently serving a ten year sentence of three drug-related charges, spent his 39th birthday in a Miami prison cell.
Lawywers for the deejay (born Mark Myrie) filed a motion with the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida asking that the Grammy-winning entertainer be granted a new trial this coming nearly three weeks after a Georgia Circuit Court rejected his argument that his right to a speedy trial had been violated. The three-judge panel of the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta ruled June 21 that the evidence supported Banton’s 2011 conviction in Tampa federal court. The panel also agreed with the jury’s conviction of Banton on a gun possession charge,despite the charge being dismissed by the presiding judge during his last trial.
His lawyer David Markus has stated that they will be seeking a new trial within the coming weeks. Should this occur it would be Buju’s third.
His first trial in September of 2010 ended with a hung jury that led to the second trial in February 2011, in which he was convicted. Four months later (June 2011) he was sentenced and started his prison sentence from a Texas correctional facility before being moved to Florida after concerns were raised for his safety.
If convicted in a new trial, Buju runs the risk of getting a longer senten
Buju Banton’s current release date is set for February 1, 2019.
Reggae legend Gregory Isaacs AKA The Cool Ruler was also born on July 15. Though he is not here to celebrate (he died October 25 2010) the foundation named in his honor will host a night of tribute and charity dubbed “A Hat Affair” in his honor.
The Gregory Isaacs Foundation will celebrate Gregory’s 62nd earthday on Sunday July 15 at Studio 38 on Trafalgar Road, Kingston 10 in the form of a free concert. Patrons are asked to donate non-perishable food items, clothing, school supplies, medical supplies, toys or monitory contribution to the charities Gregory started in his lifetime and which the foundation has continued to support.
Roots Radics Band Gregory’s first backing band will open with a tribute and Live Wyya his last backing band will also offer tributes to mark the occasion.
Some of the artistes scheduled to celebrate this event are John Holt, Cocoa Tea, Mighty Diamonds, George Nooks, Stranger Cole, Big Youth, Tarrus Riley, Aliane, Bongo Herman and many others. All artistes will be backed by Lloyd Parks & We The People Band.
Gates open at 5pm, showtime is 7pm