Moral victory for 'Gaza Boss' - Tavares-Finson

March 16, 2017
Tom Tavares Finson
Vybz Kartel
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Tom Tavares-Finson, lawyer for incarcerated dancehall superstar Vybz Kartel, said the decision by a Court of Appeal judge to grant him leave to appeal his murder conviction and life sentence has vindicated the Gaza Boss' position.

"It is of limited legal consequence but an extremely important moral victory for the client because it vindicates his view that he was wrongly convicted, and it vindicates his view that when the matter goes to appeal, he will have a strong appeal to be heard," Tavares-Finson said.

Under the law, convicted persons have the right to an appeal. However, a single judge of the court is required to examine the court transcript and determine whether the matter should go forward.

That task fell to Justice Frank Williams who said several issues have arisen from the trial, including whether the phone evidence used in the trial was sufficiently addressed by the trial judge.

 

WEEDING OUT PROCESS

 

"This is a sort of weeding out process, and we have not been weeded out," Tavares-Finson said.

"The judge would have gone through the volume of the trial and read it, which he would have been doing for the past several months, and then come to those conclusions."

The appeal is expected to be heard by September.

Vybz Kartel, whose given name is Adidja Palmer, along with Shawn 'Shawn Storm' Campbell, Kahari Jones and Andre St John were convicted of the August 2011 murder of Clive 'Lizard' Williams.

All four received life sentences with Kartel being handed the harshest. He was sentenced to life in prison, and will have to wait 35 years before being eligible for parole.

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