Tommy Lee is a free man
Tommy Lee Sparta is a free man. The entertainer was cleared of lottery scamming charges in the Home Circuit court in downtown Kingston Thursday morning after a judge upheld a no-case submission made by his lawyer.
The artiste, whose given name is Leroy Russell, was jointly charged with O’Brian Smith for possession of identity information and unlawful use of premises.
The prosecution argued that Tommy Lee is involved in lottery scamming, an illegal activity which has seen United States citizens being bilked of billions of dollars.
Earlier in the trial, a detective corporal Campbell told prosecuting attorney Sophia Thomas that he examined evidence received from investigators, which included a laptop and a one terabyte external hard drive which contained the information on the foreign nationals.
The hard drive and laptop were tendered into evidence as exhibits nine and 10 respectively.
“I found a partition on the hard drive called 'Tommy Lee'. I observed two files in the trash folder. I viewed the contents and observed they contained names, address, city, state, zip and phone numbers. It was North American numbers based on the area code,” he said.
Campbell told the court that both files contained 1001 records each, for persons living in California, Connecticut, New York, Virginia and Orlando.
IN PHOTO: Tommy Lee Sparta
The court also heard that the police found more than 5,500 more records of personal information for people living abroad on the same computer.
The items were seized in February 2014 during a search of an apartment. Four suspects, including Tommy Lee and Smith were held at the time.
Russell and Smith were eventually charged.
Last July, Tommy Lee Sparta said he "just wish dem woulda free me up right now" so that he can run the place again.
"A run me a come run di place when me court done cause me know what fi do but me caah do exactly wah fi do when me tie up suh inna di system," he said, adding that the justice system can "break yuh down to pieces".
On Wednesday, Tommy Lee's lawyer, Ernest Smith, said the Crown failed to prove that the accused men were involved in lottery scamming.
"In an effort to prove its case, the prosecution has placed its life on the contents of a laptop and external hard drive. My Lady, in the first instance, the prosecution must prove that on the gadgets on which they rely, were in the sole possession of either or both accused, individually or jointly.”
IN PHOTO: Attorney-at-law Ernest Smith
He continued: “From the outset, it became blatantly clear that numerous persons had access to these gadgets. If I’m to use the forensic phrase, I would say there was a multiplicity of users in respect of these gadgets ... The prosecution has never said that these two men put the evidence on the computers. Where is the evidence that even one phone call was made to any of these persons with the intent to defraud?”
Smith was also concerned that while the accused men were in custody, the evidence showed that the devices were accessed on February 4, 2014.
It is alleged that in February 2014, the police raided a house in the Kingston 5 area, where lottery scamming paraphernalia was found.