Banton’s Drug Case Declared A Mistrial, Retrial Planned

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September 27, 2010 | 8:55pm EST

Reggae star Buju Banton’s drug case has been declared a mistrial, after a jury failed to reach a unanimous decision.
Banton, real name Mark Myrie, was jailed in December 2009 after he was caught allegedly attempting to buy more than five kilograms of cocaine from an undercover law enforcement officer in Sarasota, Florida.

The case was postponed twice earlier this year but the troubled Jamaican took the stand last week to face charges including conspiracy to possess, intent to distribute and possession of a firearm.

Banton denied the charges and claimed he had lied about his ambitions to deal illegal substances to “impress” his new pal – the officer.

On Monday the star’s case was declared a mistrial after jurors were unable to reach a verdict after three days of deliberations, reports Reuters.

District Judge James Moody has stated a retrial won’t start until at least December.

Banton faces life imprisonment if convicted.