Banton Team To Take Fight To Supreme Court

News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Mon. Oct, 29, 2012: Jailed Jamaican-born, Grammy Award-winning reggae star, Buju Banton, is set to appeal his case in the Supreme Court.

A press statement today said Chokwe Lumumba, Banton’s new attorney will join activists, educators, friends and supporters of the singer, born, Mark Anthony Myrie, on Monday, November 5th, in Washington D.C. to officially announce the filing of a petition for a Writ of Certiorari at a press conference.

A writ of certiorari is an order a higher court issues in order to review the decision and proceedings in a lower court and determine whether there were any irregularities. When a court issues a writ or certiorari it is referred to as “granting certiorari”, or ‘cert.’

“Hundreds of thousands, if not millions of people are convinced that Mark Anthony Myrie was unjustly targeted and convicted in the United States court in Florida,” Lumumba, who once represented the late rapper, Tupac Shakur, was quoted as saying. “We request that the highest court of the land review this injustice and overturn it. We are determined to fight for Myrie’s freedom until he is vindicated.”

Lumumba, in association with the Buju Banton Defense Support Committee and the Gargamel Music Family, is organizing ‘The Free Buju Press Conference’ at The Methodist Building, 100 Maryland Ave. N.E., located across the street from the Supreme Court at 1p.m.
Guest speakers are slated to include national head of the NAACP, Ben Jealous; civil rights activist, actor and comedian Dick Gregory; Dr. Carolyn Cooper, author and lecturer at University of the West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica; Brother Aula Sumbry, a radio host and Chairman of the NAACP Prison Committee in Trenton, NJ; Stepanie Black, film producer and reggae artist, Gramps Morgan, among others.

Banton was convicted last year for “conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute” and “using the wires to facilitate a drug trafficking offense,” federal offenses that together carry a 10-year penalty. A third conviction, “knowing and intentionally carrying a firearm to further a drug offense,” a five year minimum, was thrown out at his sentencing hearing.

The U.S. Court of Appeals reversed that decision, however, and Banton will be re-sentenced in a Tampa courthouse early next week.