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Hunt continues for more jurors in Kartel case

Published:Tuesday | November 19, 2013 | 12:00 AM

Barbara Gayle, Justice Coordinator

Dancehall entertainer Vybz Kartel, whose real name is Adidja Palmer, and his five co-accused are to return to the Home Circuit Court today for three more jurors to be selected to try the murder case against them.

Yesterday, 62 potential jurors turned up, and after two hours, only nine were chosen.

Justice Lennox Campbell, in adjourning the case until today, said steps would have to be taken to get additional jurors. The accused men are each entitled to challenge seven juror prospects and the Crown is entitled to challenge 42, so more than 90 persons should have been present.

When one of the jurors was about to be sworn, the judge took the decision that she should not serve. When asked by defence lawyer Tom Tavares-Finson, who is representing Palmer, as to the basis for his decision, the judge said, "From where I sit, I see a lot of things," and it was on that basis he decided she should not sit on the panel.

The prosecution witnesses and one defence witness were bound over to return to court today. The judge reminded the jurors who were selected that they had taken an oath and must not allow anyone to speak to them about the case.

Palmer is charged jointly with fellow entertainer Shawn Campbell, popularly known as Shawn Storm, fashion designer Calvin Haye, André St John, Shane Williams and Kahira Jones.

Haye's bail was extended, while the other accused were remanded.


The Crown, represented by Jeremy Taylor, senior deputy director of public prosecutions, and Crown Counsel Leighton Morris, is alleging that Williams died after he was severely beaten at Kartel's home in Havendale, St Andrew, on August 16, 2011.

It is further alleged that Williams was killed because of a missing firearm. Williams' body has not been found.

The prosecution is alleging that it has witnesses and video and audio recordings to prove its case against the men.