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Buju Banton out on bail

BY PAUL HENRY Crime/court co-ordinator henryp@jamaicaobserver.com
Wednesday, November 10, 2010


REGGAE artiste Buju Banton this afternoon walked out of the Pinellas County Jail in Tampa, Florida after he was granted bail in an immigration court. Banton has been in jail since December last year when he was arrested for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute five or more kilogrammes of cocaine.

A member of his legal team, Marc Seitles, said the artiste was overjoyed that he gained some measure of freedom.

"Buju can’t wait to have a nice meal and sleep in his own bed,” Seitle said.

In September, Banton, whose real name is Mark Myrie, was left pondering his fate after a 12-member jury could not reach a unanimous decision about his innocence or guilt.

He will be retried in February next year.

Banton met the conditions bail set by US magistrate Anthony Porcelli after his friend and son of Reggae King Bob Marley, Stephen Marley, put up his US$300,000 house as collateral.

Myrie will have to wear a tracking device and will be under 24-hour surveillance from a security company. He has also signed an extradition waiver and will not be allowed to leave the Middle District of Souther District of Florida until his trial begins.

He will only be allowed to visit a doctor and his lawyer.

Also he must submit himself to urine tests to prove that he is not using banned substances.



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