Vybz Kartel is happy that his appeal case is out the hands of the Jamaican “corrupt” justice system and in the hands of “logic and reason” in the UK Privy Council.
The dancehall legend secured a small but important win last week when the UK high court ruled in his favor and granted him an earlier than scheduled appeal hearing due to health concerns. The Privy Council ruled to expedite the hearing to February 2024, up from April April 16 to 18, 2024.
An elated Vybz Kartel reacted to the news, saying, “When you’re out of the hands of badmind and corrupt crosses and in the hands of logic and reason.” The incarcerated artist has been receiving a lot of support from his fans and peers in the dancehall community, including Teejay, Spice, I-Octane, Baby Cham, and his co-defendant Shawn Storm.
“Yes man same way so Free World Boss,” Spice said, while Shawn Storm bemoaned, “Great things will happen (statement completed).”
Defense attorney Bert Samuels, who represents Shawn Storm, told Urban Islandz that the defense is ready to present arguments to the Privy Council. “Based on the record of appeal it’s a good time for the distillation of the arguments and we’re very elated. The appellants are ready, their attorneys are ready,” Samuels said.
“The defendants are elated and no doubt bringing their almost 12 years in custody with a new hope and we are very confident that the grounds of the appeal are arguable grounds and we look forward to the best result, that is not guilty and the release of the four appellants,” the lawyer added.
In May this year, Vybz Kartel’s attorney, Isat Buchanan, exclusively told Urban Islandz that the deejay was placed in an inhumane solitary confinement space in prison that lacked adequate ventilation and further put his health at greater risk. The artist was placed in solitary confinement after prison authorities found a cell phone in his cell. However, his lawyer said that authorities regularly find hundreds of cell phones and other contraband in prison daily, but only Kartel and two other inmates were targeted and punished.
With regard to his health, the attorney told us that he has been getting private medical care to treat a heart condition and issues with his thyroid that require him to have access to clean air at all times.
“Mr. Palmer is under private treatment at his expense,” Buchanan said. “It is within the knowledge of prison officials that his health is a concern. To be placed under a 23-hour lockdown as an appellant given the state of his health is most unfortunate. His medical condition requires access to clean air. Breathing is essential to life that is common sense. It is inhumane punishment [to] execute this form of punishment on Mr Palmer and others given the state of the prisons.”
Vybz Kartel and three co-defendants were convicted in 2014 for the 2011 murder of Clive ‘Lizard’ Williams. The victim’s body was never found, and the defense team points to several problems with the prosecution’s case against Kartel and company, including police allegedly tampering with evidence and threatening witnesses to make statements.