Last month, following a 65-day trial — said to be the longest in the history of Jamaica’s Circuit court — and a riotous fan protest, dancehall star and self-proclaimed World Boss Vybz Kartel was found guilty in the 2011 murder of Clive “Lizard” Williams. Today Kartel, whose real name is Adidja Palmer, was sentenced to life in prison. Though he won’t be eligible for parole for 35 years, it’s possible that he will be able to continue recording music while behind bars– all proceeds going to Williams’ family.
Kartel’s three codefendants in the case — Shawn “Shawn Storm” Campbell, Kahira Jones and Andre St. John — also received life sentences today. The defense team has indicated that they have plans to appeal, citing, as they have all along, the fabrication and manipulation of evidence. Kartel’s lawyer has taken particular issue with the text messages (including one that described the mincing of Williams’ body) allegedly sent from Kartel’s phone after it had already been confiscated.
“Addi never asked for nor expected anything else from the system that facilitated his conviction despite missing n tampered evidence,” wrote his team this afternoon. Last October, he made similar claims in a statement to FADER: “The Jamaican justice system is actually an injustice system. Vybz Kartel can’t get bail because he’s a flight risk. Our injustice system is not built for ghetto youths or their representatives.”