The attorney of Jamaican superstar Buju Banton’s has declared that his client “vigorously denies” the charges against him. Banton was held in an undercover sting operation by the federal bureau in Sarasota, South Florida last week as he tried to purchase a large amount of cocaine.
Herbert E Walker III , we have learnt is representing the artiste and in an email to The Associated Press early Tuesday said while he looks forward to representing Buju he will not be discussing the case further.
A U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration affidavit says Buju along with two others traveled to Sarasota last week to make the purchase. Walker said Buju “vigorously denies these allegations.”
While the Jamaican reggae singer remains in federal custody in Miami the word from many in his home country remain that he was ‘deliberately set up’. On its Facebook group local radio station RJR Beyond-The Headlines programme asked the question “What are your thoughts on Buju Banton’s arrest on drug charges?”
One of the responded questioned the allegation, “I think it is a set-up. If he was not caught selling drugs when he just started his music career and needed money, why then would he start doing so now when his career is at an all time high. I find the allegations very hard to believe.”
Another slapped: “The U.S. is quite capable of transducing “right” to “wrong” & vice -versa based on current CIRCUMSTANCE, we need more information but I am willing to give the Gargamel benefit of doubt…”
Meantime the gay community, who recently launched an online petition against Buju’s nomination in the Reggae category for a Grammy, have also been blamed for the artiste’s arrest. “It was carefully orchestrated by the gay people who have caused his concerts to be cancelled….these people are powerful and have talons in all areas of the society,” one respondent held. She continued: “they’re getting rid of Buju (remember they killed Shabba Ranks’ career)…they’re going to ensure that he goes before a gay judge and a gay prosecutor and a very gay jury…20 to life.”
Banton, whose real name is Mark Anthony Myrie, faces a charge of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine. He faces up to 20 years in prison.