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February 13, 2014
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'My hands are clean' - Kartel claims he knew nothing about 'Lizard's murder

Barbara Gayle, Justice Coordinator

Deejay Vybz Kartel yesterday spoke in court and in an unsworn statement claimed that he knew nothing about the murder for which he is on trial.

Kartel, whose real name is Adidja Palmer, said, "My Lord, my hands are clean of Clive Williams blood, if, indeed, Clive Williams is deceased."

He said there was a group of persons conspiring against him and his friends. He referred to National Security Minister Peter Bunting, who he said took his music and image to the United States claiming that "Vybz Kartel's lyrics, my Lord, is glorifying scamming."

The dancehall artiste said that Bunting said that there were four essential elements "mashing up Jamaica and I was one of them, my Lord." Kartel said the statements were prejudicial to his case.

He said he was heavily tattooed and he bleached his skin, but that was merely superficial because that was "part of the persona of Vybz Kartel, not Adidja Palmer."

evidence

The deejay and four other men have been on trial in the Home Circuit Court since November last year. The Crown, represented by Senior Deputy Director of Public Prosecution Jeremy Taylor and Crown Counsel Leighton Williams, has led evidence at the trial that Clive 'Lizard' Williams was beaten to death at Kartel's house at 7 Swallowfield Avenue in Havendale, St Andrew, on August 16 2011. It is alleged that Williams was beaten over two missing guns. The body has not been found.

In yesterday's proceedings Kartel's four co-accused - Shane Williams; André St John; entertainer Shawn Campbell, popularly known as Shawn Storm; and Kahira Jones - also said they were all innocent of the charges and had nothing to do with the murder.

Shawn Storm told the court that on August 16 2011, the prosecution's main witness and Clive Williams followed him freely to Havendale. He said Williams got off at the guest house in Havendale and the witness went to the Swallowfield address. He said he left, and when he saw the witness later that night, the witness only told him that the dog had bitten Kartel. He said the witness did not tell him about anyone lying on the ground.

When the trial resumes today, a handwriting expert will be called in relation to a letter which was sent to the Office of the Public Defender. The prosecution's main witness had denied writing a letter outlining that he had given his statement out of fear and that he had seen Lizard alive after the night of the incident.

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