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Discrepancy With Evidence Leaves Judges In Vybz Kartel Appeal Case Puzzled

A discrepancy in relation to the time one of the damning text messages used to convict dancehall entertainer Vybz Kartel of murder was created, left the judges hearing his appeal puzzled on Monday.

One of the defence attorneys in the case revealed the anomaly as the first day of the hearing of the entertainer's appeal got underway.

Kartel is appealing the life sentence imposed on him in 2014 for the murder of Clive "Lizard" Williams on August 16, 2011.

Three other men - Shawn Campbell or "Shawn Storm", Andre St. John and Kahira Jones - were also convicted for the murder.

The text message in question is one reportedly taken from one of Vybz Kartel's mobile phones. In it, he allegedly described finely chopping up the victim.

On Monday, Bianca Samuels, the attorney representing one of the convicts, Shawn Campbell, told the court that the phone's metadata showed that the text message was created on July 6, 2011, six weeks before prosecutors claim Williams was killed.

"So what that reveals, obviously, is that there was some tampering and some usage of the phone to create a text message somehow that came before, that was prophetic in some way as to the death or alleged death of Clive Williams," she insisted.

Ms. Samuels also argued that the evidence revealed that the integrity of the phone was compromised.

During the trial in 2014, defence lawyers argued that there were multiple unexplained instances in which the phone was used.

They argued that three calls were made from the phone while it was in the custody of the police. However, the forensic expert who testified at the trial said he did not authorise anyone to use the phone.

According to Ms Samuels "it is for that reason that I have submitted to the court that the exhibit, the cellphone, which included a number of damaging pieces of evidence relied on by the crown, should not have been given to the jury for their consideration, based on the law."

The other matter rasied on Monday related to prosecutorial misconduct.

Attorney Bert Samuels raised concern that the jury was allowed to deliberate despite the court being told that one juror allegedly tried to bribe other members of the panel.

He accused the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) of aiding and abetting an attempt to pervert the course of justice because she instructed the judge to keep the juror despite knowing of his indiscretion.

The juror was then charged separately for perverting the course of justice after he sat on the trial. His case is ongoing in the Half Way Tree Parish Court.

The appeal continues on Tuesday.

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