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Ninja's lawyer optimistic

By Brian Bonitto
Associate Editor —
Auto & Entertainment

Thursday, October 19, 2017

NINJAMAN spent a second night in custody at the Central Police Station in Kingston yesterday.

His attorney Valrie Neita-Robertson is, however, optimistic the embattled entertainer will get bail today.

“The judge says he'll review the matter tomorrow. Hopefully he'll get back his bail tomorrow,” she told the Jamaica Observer last night.

Neita-Robertson was quick to point out that it is customary for individuals on murder trial be taken into police custody.

Ninjaman, whose given name is Desmond Ballentine, along with his son Jahneil, is charged with the March 2009 murder of Ricardo Johnson on Marl Road in Kingston. He was granted bail in 2012.

The dancehall deejay was taken into custody on Tuesday after his bail was revoked by High Court judge, Justice Martin Gayle, who ordered the murder trial to begin immediately. The case had seen 17 trial dates and 23 mentions.

Neita-Robertson said the judge had a recent experience which may have influenced his decision.

“Three weeks ago he was presiding over a murder case and three murder accused skipped court after being granted bail,” she said.

The case was recently transferred to a special court to handle cases on the books for more than five years. It is scheduled to continue today.

Born in St Mary, Ninjaman came to prominence in the 1980s. He is known for songs including Artical Don, Border Clash, and Cover Me featuring Tinga Stewart.

The deejay also starred in the local, action movie Third World Cop (1999).