Vybz Kartel, Sentenced to Life in Prison in 2014, Wins Appeal of Murder Conviction


In 2014, Vybz Kartel was sentenced to life in prison after being convicted of the 2011 murder of Clive “Lizard” Williams. The Jamaican dancehall star has now won an appeal of his conviction due to juror misconduct in the original trial, Reuters reports. A Jamaican appeals court will now decide whether the musician and his co-defendants will again stand trial.

The trial of Vybz Kartel and his co-defendants lasted 64 days and was one of the longest in Jamaican history. During the trial, one juror allegedly tried to bribe other jurors to return not-guilty verdicts, but the alleged briber was not dismissed from the case.

In overturning the convictions, the Privy Council ruled that allowing the questionable juror to stay on the jury was “fatal to the safety of the convictions which followed” and “an infringement of the [defendants’] fundamental right to a fair hearing,” according to BBC News.

Before being charged with murder, Vybz Kartel had worked with major artists including Rihanna, Pharrell Williams, and Jay-Z. Despite his incarceration, he has released numerous new albums.