Thu | Jun 17, 2021

Why the judge never made an order on Kartel recording music from prison

Published:Thursday | April 3, 2014 | 7:16 PM

Barbara Gayle, Justice Coordinator

KINGSTON, Jamaica:

Prosecutors in the Vybz Kartel murder trial have outlined in their their written submissions on sentencing that Justice Lennox Campbell could not make an order as part of the sentence that an entertainer be permitted to continue his trade in prison.

Last week, Justice Campbell postponed sentencing to allow the prosecutors and the defence lawyers to have their input in relation to the sentencing of Kartel and the three men convicted along with him for the murder of Clive 'Lizard' Williams.

One of the avenues the judge wanted to probe was whether Kartel would be allowed to pursue his music career in prison.

If so, the judge would order that the proceeds go to Lizard's family.

But in addressing the issue today, prosecutors Jeremy Taylor and Leighton Morris said the Corrections Act suggests that the court could not make an order as part of its sentence that an individual with special talents be permitted to continue his trade during the period of their incarceration.

Neither could the court forbid it.

"Such arrangements are entirely between the convicts and the Commissioner of Corrections," the prosecutors said.

Kartel and Shawn Campbell, otherwise called 'Shawn Storm' are known entertainers.

Campbell is also a trained and certified auto mechanic.

The prosecutors say well-known singer Siccature Alcock popularly called 'Jah Cure' who was convicted of rape was allowed to continue his singing and recording career while he served his sentence.

But they say this was part of the rehabilitative process.

Meanwhile, the prosecutors submitted that the court does not have jurisdiction to make such an order as the outcome of the proceeds from the talents of a singer

"Again, those arrangements would be between the convicts and the Commissioner of Corrections," they wrote.

And, although it was not the custom for the prosecutors to make recommendations on sentencing in murder cases which do not attract the death penalty, the judge had asked them along with the defence lawyers for their input.

The prosecutors referred to several murder cases and suggested that based on Kartel's role in the commissioning of the murder, he should not be eligible for parole until he served between 35 to 40 years.

The prosecution recommended that Shawn Campbell should serve between 30 and 35 years before parole; and Kahira Jones and Andre St John 25 to 30 years.

The judge later ordered that Kartel, 38, whose real name is Adidja Palmer, is to serve 35 years before parole, Campbell, 35, and Kahira Jones, 27, are to serve 25 years before parole while 26-year-old barber Andre St John is to serve 30 years before parole.

WATCH: Kartel, co-accused sentenced

Like our new Facebook page:

Gleaner Jamaica

Follow us on Twitter: