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Buju secures evidentiary hearing in drug case

By M. Jodee
OutAroad Writer

buju_banton_appeal_court.jpgThere'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.

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