Friday, 30 September 2022 14:32

Vybz Kartel Transferred to General Penitentiary Following Fiance's Interview

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Isat Buchanan, attorney-at-law representing Dancehall artist Vybz Kartel, has lambasted authorities for transferring his client – an appellant with a case before the Privy Council – to the Tower Street Adult Correctional Centre, known as GP on Thursday during a period of heavy rainfall.

“Transferring Mr Palmer in the rain causing him to get wet given his medical condition is an attempt at his life,” Buchanan said.

Buchanan, who is representing Vybz Kartel as he seeks to overturn his murder conviction before the Privy Council, expressed concern for his client’s general health calling the timing of the transfer itself  “deliberate and or negligent and unacceptable.”

“I am concerned for his safety and health,” he said, 

Kartel was being held at Horizon Adult Remand Centre after he was initially removed from GP a few years ago. 

He has been in jail since 2011 for the murder of an associate named Clive ‘Lizard’ Williams, along with his co-accused fellow artiste Shawn Storm, and two others, Kahira Jones and Andre St. John. Since Kartel’s conviction in 2014, the deejay has maintained his innocence. 

Mr. Buchanan also questioned the timing of the transfer by the Department of Correctional Services (DCS) as it was executed in the wake of an interview done by Fox5NewYork journalist Lisa Evers with Kartel’s Turkish fiancé, Sidem Öztürk, which aired earlier this week.

“The move comes following the airing of an interview on fox 5 by his fiancé as well as the eve of the anniversary of his arrest 11 years ago,” Buchanan said.

“I am very disappointed that taxpayers’ money is being wasted for fishing expeditions and PR stunts,” he continued.

Ozturk told journalist Lisa Evers that she and Kartel got engaged in the summer of 2022 during an authorized prison visit. Last month, Kartel dedicated his upcoming EP, True Religion to Ozturk and shared new photos of her visiting him at the Horizon Adult Remand Centre in Kingston.

The EP  is being released today, September 30.

“I urge all Jamaicans to download ‘True Religion, a tribute to Sidem, which comes out on Friday at 11 pm. It’s a really good love story,” Buchanan said.

On April 3, 2020, a three-member Jamaican court of appeals panel upheld Kartel’s 2014 murder conviction. The Kingston court released a 235-page opinion on that day. The court also upheld the convictions and sentences for dancehall artiste Shawn Storm, as well as Jones and St John.