Buju Banton bail ruling put on hold for a week
Jamaican reggae star Buju Banton, jailed since his arrest last December on suspicion of conspiracy to possess and distribute cocaine, will have to wait a week longer to find out whether he'll get out on bail, the Jamaica Observer reports.
The judge in the federal case, Anthony Porcelli, reserved judgment for a week in a hearing Wednesday in Tampa, Fla., saying he wanted to thoroughly review the arguments for and against bail. The prosecution maintains that the Jamaican citizen is a flight risk; the defense counters that his fame means he couldn't flee. (Roman Polanski might have some advice?)
A mistrial was declared Sept. 27 after jurors in Banton's case could not come to an agreement after a four-day trial and three days of deliberations. A retrial is expected to begin in December.
Banton, whose real name is Mark Myrie, faces up to life in prison if convicted.
-- Christie D'Zurilla
Photo: Buju Banton in October 2003 at the Source Hip-Hop Music Awards in Miami. Credit: Yesikka Vivancos / Associated Press
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