Monday, January 11, 2010

Buju Banton Pleads Not Guilty In Drug Case

Reggae artist Buju Banton has pleaded not guilty to drug charges stemming from a December 2009 arrest in Florida.

Banton, whose real name is Mark Myrie, was arraigned Thursday (January 7) on a charge of conspiring to buy more than five kilograms of cocaine from an undercover law enforcement officer in Sarasota in December.

According to reports, during the court appearance the Jamaican singer did not request bail, but confirmed to Judge William Turnoff that he was waiving his bail hearing in Miami to be transferred to Tampa. If he had elected to post bond, he would be held by immigration officials until his trial date.

Banton's lawyer took the time to speak with the media after the hearing and insisted that his client is innocent, and is not interested in seeking a plea deal.

"He believes that because the indictment was filed out of Tampa, that's where the case should be defended," said his attorney, Herbert E. Walker III. "He's a very spiritual person. He has a lot of faith in God. He's confident he's going to be exonerated."

If convicted Banton could be sentenced to over 20 years in prison. He is currently being held in federal custody in Tampa, Florida.

No comments:

Post a Comment