Tag Archive | "Chokwe Lumumba"

Buju Banton

Buju Banton releases letter expressing sadness at death of Chokwe Lumumba

Buju Banton Incarcerated Reggae/Dancehall superstar has released a heartfelt letter of condolence following the recent death of his former lawyer and the mayor of Jackson, Mississippi, Chokwe Lumumba.


Lumumba, who represented Buju for nearly a year as he fought his 2011 drug conviction, died in a Mississippi hospital after suffering severe chest pains on Feb. 25. Buju was forced to change lawyers following Lumumba’s successful mayoral election last July.


Buju Banton, whose real name is Mark Myrie, released the detailed letter on Friday expressing his shock at the death while giving insight into their relationship and how Lumumba helped him during his case. The full letter is below:


To the family and friend of the late Chokwe Lumumba:


My heart goes out to you all. I share in your grief immensely. Having been one of the many lives Atty. Lumumba has touched. Its with a deep sense of privation that I mourned the passing of my friend and another great black freedom fighter .Atty. Chokwe Lumumba, a warrior just like the great leader, Patrice Lumumba, who fought for the liberation of the Congo in Africa.

Atty. Lumumba fought for many who could not stand up against a profaned system that is filled with injustice.A well disciplined and principled man. We first met while I was going through the litigation process stemming from the 11th Circuit Court of Appeal decision to reinstate a gun charge. A charge that was previously dismissed by the district court judge.

This tall, dignified black man walked into the visiting room at the F.C.J Miami, introduced himself and got right down to business. Atty. Lumumba had already done his homework concerning my case and clearly saw something was amiss.He never tried to sugar coat his thoughts. He believed it {was} imperative and made it very clear that I should do the same.

Throughout those protracted months I spent at the Pinellas County Jail in Tampa, FL, Atty. Lumumba called at least twice weekly. To discuss my case and ascertain all was well with me. He traveled all the way from Mississippi to Florida for attorney client visits. All these actions of genuine interest in my situation, gave me confidence in Atty Lumumba. We developed mutual respect for each other.

His appraisal for my chances as it regards justice was always realistic. Hence his proactive approach as oppose to being reactive. This brought about a favorable outcome, with the gun charge being dismissed. At the end of the evidentiary hearings in 2013, Atty. Lumumba looked me in the eyes and said, “What did you do to these people. This is not justice at all. From the gate you have been screwed”.

Now having gone through a battery of Attorneys and immense suffering, I knew without a doubt that there were some hidden forces at work and I was being shafted. Lumumba also advised me that having been elected Mayor of Jackson, Mississippi, he was unable to continue his career as a defense Attorney.


However, he went on to recommend a few attorneys whom he believed would effectively assist me. Atty. Lumumba also reached out to my current Attorney, Professor Charles Ogletree. In parting, Atty. Lumumba again said “Mark its going to be an uphill struggle. I saw what they did to you and unfortunately, you didn’t see it coming. Once they have you, it’s hell to break free from their chains son. I wish you all the best. You can call me anytime for anything at all. However I can render assistance, trust me, I will.

We spoke several times after he was no longer my official representative. Even through third parties ,even as recent as two days before his passing. So I was not only shocked but also in a state of denial. Atty Lumumba was vigorous and energetic, even when he spoke in a subtle manner. How could this happen without warning? This is really sad. I just have to pay my respects in whatever way I can. Thank you for the time you dedicated to my cause. It will be with me forever and the countless others whom you have touched with your passion for justice.


I know you are in a much better place. If what they say is true, then you are still fighting for those who cannot fight for themselves. Farewell my friend. You shall be greatly missed.


Lumumba’s body currently lies in state at Jackson’s City Hall ahead of his scheduled funeral on Saturday at the Jackson Convention Complex.


It was announced last week that Buju’s new lawyer, Charles Ogletree filed documentation seeking a new trial in a U.S. appeals court.

Posted in LATEST NEWSComments (0)

Chokwe Lumumba

Chokwe Lumumba, former lawyer for Buju Banton, dies at 66

Chokwe LumumbaChokwe Lumumba, the recently-elected mayor of Jackson, Mississippi and former lawyer of incarcerated Reggae/Dancehall superstar, Buju Banton has died at the age of 66.

Lumumba reportedly died of heart failure at St. Dominic’s Hospital after complaining of chest pains on Tuesday. However, no official cause of death has been released at this time.

Known as a civil rights activist and a black radical, Lumumba was regarded as one of the most prominent leaders of a major city to come from the black revolutionary movement. He also served as an accomplished lawyer for several decades, representing late, great rapper, Tupac Shakur, as well as his step-aunt, Assata Shakur, once a member of the Black Panther Party.

In August 2012, 14 months after receiving his 10-year sentence on drug charges, Buju Banton hired Lumumba as his new lawyer in an effort to continue his fight for freedom. Lumumba wa instrumental in bringing forward a case of alleged juror misconduct in the deejay’s February 2011 trial, in which juror Terri Wright was found to have researched aspect of his case during the trial. However, she was not charged with contempt as a result of the misconduct.

Lumumba also helped Buju avoid an additional five-year sentence on a gun charge originally thrown out during the trial.

However, Lumumba left his role as Buju’s lawyer last July after being elected the mayor of Jackson.

Posted in LATEST NEWSComments (0)

Buju Banton

Buju Banton may change lawyers in drug case

Buju BantonEmbattled Dancehall/Reggae artist, Mark Myrie, more popularly known as Buju Banton may be forced to change his legal representation for a second time just days after a gun conviction against him was dismissed in a Florida courthouse.

The possible move comes as a result of Buju’s lead lawyer, Chokwe Lumumba being elected the mayor of Jackson, Mississippi earlier this month. With Lumumba set to begin his term on July 1, Buju’s co-counsel, Imhotep Alkebu-Lan conceded to the Jamaica Gleaner on Thursday that the singer will likely have to look for new representation, though no final decision has been made.

Prior to that decision, Buju will have to decide whether or not to appeal a federal judge’s decision not to grant the Grammy-winning entertainer a retrial in his drug case.

On Wednesday, Judge James Moody threw out a gun conviction against, which would have carried an additional five years on his ten-year prison term for drug-related convictions. Additionally, Judge Moody ordered the government to charge Terri Wright, a juror on Buju’s February 2011 drug trial, with criminal contempt after it was deemed she violated federal court orders by researching aspects of the singer’s case during the trial.

Buju Banton now has 14 days to appeal Moody’s decision not to grant a retrial while prosecutors have 30 days to appeal the dismissal of the gun conviction.

Last August, Buju dropped lead attorney, David Oscar Markus in favor of Lumumba weeks after a failed appeal to overturn his drug conviction, which led to the reinstatement of a gun charge initially tossed out in the February 2011 trial.




Posted in LATEST NEWSComments (2)

Buju Banton 2013

Buju Banton gun conviction dismissed as trial juror faces contempt charge

Buju Banton 2013Embattled Dancehall/Reggae superstar, Mark Myrie, more popularly known as Buju Banton has received a reprieve in his fight to overturn his drug conviction as a gun charge against the entertainer was dismissed during a hearing inside a Florida courtroom Wednesday afternoon.

The ruling, handed down by Judge James Moody was made after it was determined that Terri Wright, a juror in Buju’s February 2011 drug trial, violated federal court orders by independently researching aspects of the singjay’s case. This means that Buju, currently serving a ten-year prison term on several drug-related charges, will not have to serve five additional years as a result of the gun charge, which was reinstated following a failed appeal last summer.

Judge Moody has ordered the United States government to slap a criminal contempt charge against Wright as a result of her alleged misconduct. Wright could face up to six months in prison, as well as a fine if found guilty on contempt.

Click Here To Read More

Posted in LATEST NEWSComments Off

Buju Banton

Buju Banton back in court on June 26

Buju Banton

Embattled Reggae/Dancehall superstar, Buju Banton will return to court June 26 in his juror misconduct case as he seeks a new trial.

Buju, who’s real name is Mark Myrie, was ordered to appear by Judge James Moodyalong with Terri Wright, the juror who is alleged to have violated court orders during the singjay’s February 2011 drug trial. The date was set late Tuesday, just over two weeks after a new development in the case in which a forensic expert hired by Banton concluded that she brought a desktop computer hard drive for examination of her alleged misconduct instead of a laptop she used during the trial.

Wright’s lawyer, Lori Palmieri later claimed her client misspoke in calling her computer a laptop. The aforementioned hard drive had over 1.6 million records during the trial’s duration, which were examined by the expert. However, it was determined none of those records pertained to the trial

Wright admitted to a Florida newspaper last fall that she researched aspects of Buju’s case, but later insisted this took place three weeks after the trial concluded. She has now been summoned to court to answer the forensic expert’s findings as well as issues raised in a motion filed by Buju’s legal team pertaining to a new trial.

Buju is still set to serve six more years of a ten-year sentence on drug-related charges stemming from a December 2009 incident in Florida. A gun charge, which was thrown out during the initial ruling was reinstated following a failed appeal on his conviction.

As a result, the entertainer was due to face a re-sentencing hearing and five additional year in prison in relation to the gun charge. However, the hearing was postponed after Buju’s team successfully filed an application to investigate the alleged misconduct.

Posted in LATEST NEWSComments (4)

Buju Banton

Buju Banton’s misconduct case revived following new revelation

Buju BantonEvery time it appears embattled Reggae/Dancehall superstar, Buju Banton has reached dead end in his pursuit for freedom, a new pathway clears for the singer. That trend has been evidenced yet again as his juror misconduct case appears to have regained life.

On Wednesday, during a hearing in Tampa, FL, it was determined that Terri Wright, a juror accused of violating court orders in Buju’s February 2011 drug trial, submitted the wrong computer hard drive for an examination conducted by the singer’s forensic expert to determine if she illegally researched aspects of the case. However, Wright, who insisted she used a laptop during the trial, submitted a hard drive for an old desktop computer.

Click Here To Read More

Posted in LATEST NEWSComments (2)


Progress in Buju case as judge expands probe into alleged juror misconduct

BujuEmbattled Reggae megastar, Buju Banton may be gaining steam in his ongoing fight to overturn a ten year sentence on drug charges as his case for a mistrial took a positive twist on Friday.

U.S. District Judge, James Moody ordered marshals to seize computers belonging to Terri Wright, a juror in Buju’s February 2011 drug trial who’s accused of misconduct in the matter. Buju’s legal team successfully filed a motion requesting this seizure take place in order to prove that Wright violated federal court laws by researching aspects of the Reggae artiste’s court case.

If evidence is found to back up this claim by Grammy winning entertainer’s legal team, it could trigger a mistrial in the matter.

Additionally, Judge Moody told lawyers during a conference call on Wednesday that he plans to subpoena more jurors and conduct another hearing to explore whether or not Wright violated court orders.

Click Here To Read More

Posted in LATEST NEWSComments (3)


Evidentiary hearing set in Buju’s drug case

There’s better news today for embattled Jamaican entertainer, Buju Banton as an evidentiary hearing has been set to explore allegations that a juror violated protocol in his drug trial last year.

According to reports, the hearing has been secured by Buju’s lawyer, Chokwe Lumumba in conjunction with his defense support committee. The evidentiary hearing will take place on December 20 at the Sam M. Gibbons Federal Courthouse in Tampa, FL on December 20 at 9:30 a.m.

The court has reportedly summoned four jurors to this hearing, one of whom admitted to reporters last month that she researched aspects of Buju Banton’s drug case prior to deliberation. Should that juror, Terri Wright, be proven to have done so, a mistrial could be ruled in Buju’s drug case as researching facts for federal trials constitutes a violation of court orders.

In her defense, Wright claims that despite doing such research, it had no influence on her thinking through the trial in which Buju was convicted of three drug charges and subsequently sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Buju Banton still faces an additional five years in prison on a gun charge that was reinstated during the summer after an appeal to overturn his conviction fell through. However, a re-sentencing hearing on said gun charge was postponed after Lumumba’s application for an investigation into the alleged juror misconduct was approved.

Posted in LATEST NEWSComments Off


Buju’s legal team launches new letter writing campaign

The legal team for Dancehall superstar, Buju Banton continues to pull out all the stops in their fight to secure the embattled entertainer’s freedom as they have launched a new campaign targeting the United States Supreme Court.

Chokwe Lumumba, Buju’s lead lawyer, has spearheaded a new letter writing campaign set to raise awareness about the Grammy-winning singjay’s drug case. The campaign also re-affirms their stance that the entertainer should be released from federal prison.

In a letter to the U.S. Supreme Court released on Wednesday, Lumumba indicated that Buju has filed a petition for a Writ of Certiorari, seeking a review and reversal of his conviction and subsequent 10-year sentencing on drug charges, stemming from a December 2009 incident in Florida.

Part of said letter read, “The convictions of Mr. Myrie are outrageous and unjust. Mr. Myrie was the victim of a concerted U.S. government effort to entrap, conducted by a corrupt informant who was paid 3.5 million dollars by the government for his services in various cases over the years.”

It continued, “He has never been convicted of a crime prior to the present case. He has helped feed numerous hungry children in his country and otherwise contributed to worthy causes in Jamaica and elsewhere. He is supported by hundreds of thousands and perhaps millions worldwide. I ask this honorable court to review his case and grant Mark Myrie the relief he deserves.”

These moves follow a recent discussion dubbed the Free Buju Press Conference that was held a day before the U.S. presidential elections (November 5). The conference, organized by Lumumba and the Buju Banton Defense Support Committee, was moderated by University of the West Indies (UWI) lecturer, Dr. Carolyn Cooper. It featured several guest speakers, including prominent entertainers, Stephen Marley and Gramps Morgan as well as NAACP Prison Committee chairman, Nkechi Taifa and Vice-Chairman of the National Black United Front, Salim Adafo, amongst other reputable figures.

Lumumba addressed conference attendees, claiming that Buju Banton is a ‘political prisoner,’ while adding, “There is a generational gap between the struggle to free political prisoners and the struggles of young people. [Buju is helping] to keep the act of freeing political prisoners a relevant one to all generations that exist right now.”

Buju Banton remains housed in the Pinellas County Jail, based in Clearwater, FL as he awaits re-sentencing on a gun charge in the drug case. The re-sentencing was postponed on October 30 as law enforcement officials review allegations that a juror in Buju’s February 2011 trial admitted to reviewing facts of the case before deliberation. If proven true, the juror violation could constitute a mistrial.

For those who wish to write a letter to the U.S. Supreme Court in support of the Free Buju Campaign, send your mail to the address below.

United States Supreme Court

C/O Attorney Chokwe Lumumba

440 N. Mill St.

Jackson, Mississippi 39202

Posted in LATEST NEWSComments Off

Buju Banton

Buju Banton’s sentencing postponed, entertainer issues message to fans

Embattled Dancehall superstar, Mark Myrie, more popularly known as Buju Banton will have to wait a while longer to know his fate regarding sentencing on a gun charge.

The sentencing on said gun charge in Buju Banton’s ongoing drug trial was postponed when the Grammy-winning entertainer appeared in Sam M Gibbons Federal Court in Tampa, Florida on Tuesday morning. The hearing was put off on the request of Buju’s lawyer, Chokwe Lumumba, amidst an application for an investigation he filed earlier this month, alleging juror misconduct during the singjay’s drug trial in February 2011. No new date has been set for Buju’s sentencing.

Terri Wright, a juror in Buju drug trial last year, revealed in an interview with the New Times Broward that she researched aspects of the entertainer’s case to gauge a greater understanding of the matter before deliberation. Though Wright insisted that it had no bearing on her final decision, reports surfaced that her research could constitute as a violation of court orders, thus, possibly sparking a mistrial in Buju’s case.

Click Here To Read More

Posted in LATEST NEWSComments Off


A break for Buju? Juror’s alleged violation could spark mistrial in drug case

As hope dwindles away for embattled Dancehall/Reggae superstar, Buju Banton, the prominent singjay could finally catch a break in his ongoing drug case, thanks to a juror.

Buju Banton is currently serving a 10-year sentence on drug-related charges and awaits sentencing on a gun charge in the matter on October 30. Constant appeals made on the artiste’s behalf have been shut down by the United States judicial system as Buju languishes in a Tampa-based federal facility, causing his fans worldwide to lose hope

However, Buju’s seemingly unsuccessful campaign for freedom may have one more shot at being fruitful as reports have suggested that a juror in the entertainer’s drug trial last February may have compromised the eventual outcome of his case. The New Times Broward – Palm Beach published an interview on Thursday that they conducted with Terri Wright, one of the jurors in said trial, who admits that she researched aspects of Buju Banton’s case to gauge a greater understanding of the matter before deliberation began.

“I would get in the car, just write my notes down so I could remember, and I would come home and do the research,” Wright’s quoted as saying. “They give you the instructions not to go online and, you know, make an opinion. I tried to follow that as close as possible…I don’t think what I found out would have changed how I thought.”

Click Here To Read More

Posted in LATEST NEWSComments Off


Buju Banton does not want to appear at sentencing hearing

Internationally acclaimed Reggae artiste, Buju Banton wants no part of his next scheduled court appearance as he plans to skip his upcoming sentencing hearing.

On October 30, Buju Banton faces a sentencing hearing in a Florida courtroom in relation to federal drug and gun charges stemming from his initial 2009 arrest. Buju issued an appeal to overturn his conviction and subsequent 10-year sentence on drug charges earlier this summer but was denied. As a result, a previous gun charge, which was tossed out during his trial in February 2011 was reinstated, thus sparking the possibility that Buju may face another five years in prison.

After a request for a new trial fell through, Buju Banton could be facing even more dire straits. Now, the embattled Reggae star hopes to skip his upcoming sentencing hearing after a member of his new legal team, Ihmotep Alkebu-lan intimated that his client formally requesting that he be absent from the hearing.

Buju Banton will have to sweat an upcoming court ruling before he’ll know whether or not he won’t have to attend the sentencing hearing.

Buju recently changed lawyers after dropping long-time attorney, David Oscar Markus in favor of Chokwe Lumumba, a civil rights activist who formerly represented late, great rap legend, Tupac Shakur.

Posted in LATEST NEWSComments Off


Buju Banton changes lawyer, faces October sentencing date

Internationally acclaimed Dancehall/Reggae superstar, Buju Banton will continue his fight for freedom with new legal representation after axing his long-time lawyer in his ongoing drug case.

David Oscar Markus, who has been representing Buju since his initial arrest in December 2009, has been sacked by the Grammy-winning entertainer. The move was confirmed on Tuesday by Markus himself.

“I will always consider Buju my friend and my brother and I think of him every day,” Markus wrote in an email to the Broward Palm Beach Times.

It pains me that he is in prison. I truly hope that he gets some relief.”

Click Here To Read More

Posted in LATEST NEWSComments Off

Page 1 of 11

Updated Dec 9th Radio – PRESS PLAY

Buy Now!!

Buy Now