Kar­tel gets ap­peal nod

The Star (St. Lucia) - - REGIONAL - By Brian Bonitto

Kar­tel, given name Adidja Palmer; Kahira Jones; An­dre St John; and en­ter­tainer Shawn “Shawn Storm” Camp­bell hope to have their sen­tences for mur­der over­turned. Thomas Tavares-Fin­son, at­tor­ney for Vybz Kar­tel, de­scribed the de­vel­op­ment as an “im­por­tant step in the ap­peal process”.

In an in­ter­view with the Ja­maica Ob­server, he added, “It’s the first but crit­i­cal step in the ap­peal process. A sin­gle judge, Jus­tice Frank Wil­liams, has read all the pa­pers from the trial and de­ter­mined that there are grounds on which an ap­peal could be al­lowed, so he has given the green light to pro­ceed. We will move on to a full ap­peal in Septem­ber. It is a lim­ited vic­tory, but an im­por­tant moral vic­tory for my client, as it re­in­forces the no­tion in his mind that jus­tice will be served and he will be ac­quit­ted.”

The four were given life sen­tences at the Home Cir­cuit Court in Kingston in March 2014 for in­volve­ment in the mur­der of Clive “Lizard” Wil­liams.

Kar­tel will be el­i­gi­ble for pa­role af­ter 35 years. He is cur­rently at the Tower Street Adult Cor­rec­tional Fa­cil­ity in Kingston. His co-ac­cused St John will do 30 years be­fore be­ing con­sid­ered for pa­role. Jones and Camp­bell are to serve 25 years be­fore they are el­i­gi­ble for pa­role.

Miguel Lorne, who rep­re­sented Camp­bell at the trial and is in­struct­ing Bert Sa­muels in the ap­peal, said be­ing granted leave to ap­peal is a pos­i­tive de­vel­op­ment.

“They stand a good chance of win­ning the ap­peal. He (the judge) also gave rea­sons and some of the rea­sons are fairly solid,” he said.

Sa­muels was op­ti­misti­cally cau­tious.

“Leave is granted for sen­tence and con­vic­tion; that is taken to be pos­i­tive for the ap­pel­lant. How­ever, it does not mean the ap­peal will be suc­cess­ful. We still have to fight hard to con­vince three judges,” he said.

The ap­peal is likely to be heard by the Christ­mas pe­riod or the term com­menc­ing Jan­uary.

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