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Jamaican dancehall Reggae star Vybz Kartel has been sentenced to life in prison in connection with the 2011 murder of a former associate. The trial lasted nearly 60 days and today’s sentencing drew so much attention that streets in Kingston near the courthouse were blocked off.
The sentencing was first scheduled for March 27, but delayed until today. Justice Lennox Campbell ruled that Kartel, whose real name is Adidja Palmer, will spend the rest of his life in prison and won’t be up for parole until after 35 years in prison, reports Billboard. Co-defendants Shawn Campbell and Kahira Jones will be eligible for parole in 25 years and Andre St. John will be eligible in 15. The three were also sentenced to life in prison for their connection to the murder.
According to The Associated Press, the four defendants were convicted for the August 2011 murder of Clive Williams.
There was one dissenting juror, who was later arrested for taking a bribe to get Kartel freed.
Kartel is very popular in Jamaica, especially among the youth; has tried to bring attention to issues plaguing Jamaica and built his own Gaza Empire of products. But at the same time, his music was filled with controversial, incredibly explicit language.