Vybz Kartel has been found guilty of murder by a jury in Kingston, Jamaica on Thursday, March 13.
The 38-year old, real name Adidja Azim Palmer, and four co-defendants, André St John, Kahira Jones, Shawn Campbell and Shane Williams were on trial for the August 2011 slaying of Clive “Lizard” Williams.
Prosecutors argued that the men beat Clive to death at Kartel’s home over 2 missing guns belonging to the dancehall star.
Police testified that they found a text message from Kartel indicating that Clive’s body had been chopped up in “mincemeat.” He has yet to be found.
Kartel’s lawyer, Tom Tavares-Finson, told the jury that the prosecution’s case was “dishonest” and incompetent.” He noted that “witness statements and a compact disc with evidence saved on it somehow went missing.”
There was added drama to the trial when a juror was arrested Thursday for attempting to bribe the jury foreman in an attempt to convince the panel to bring back a non guilty verdict. The foreman rejected the offer and reported the incident. A decision was made to continue the trial.
During the deliberation phase, the eleven person jury came back after 1 hour and 53 minutes with a 10-1 verdict. The judge asked them to go back and deliberate more to see if they could reach a unanimous decision because the verdict was reached in less than 2 hours.
The jury later returned with the same 10-1 verdict in favor of conviction.
Tavares-Finson told the Jamaica Observer that he plans on appealing his client’s conviction.
“There is an appeal process on which we will embark. We have to accept it and move along,” he said.
Of the five men who went to trial for killing Clive, only Shane Williams was found not guilty.
The rest face the possibility of life imprisonment. They will appear in court on March 27 for sentencing.
In 2013, Vybez and two co-defendants went to trial for the murder of Barrington “Bossy” Burton. All three were acquitted.
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