Supporters of Buju Banton Re-launch Letter Writing Campaign
West Palm Beach, Florida, September 19, 2011 – Supporters of jailed international reggae artiste Mark Anthony Myrie, popularly known as Buju Banton, re-launched the international letter writing campaign started last year. The main focus of the campaign was to get bail for the reggae icon. However, since Buju was unfortunately convicted and recently sentenced, the supporters are now asking the Attorney General Eric Holder to investigate the case and correct this grave injustice. The goal is to ensure the government is made aware that the public is concerned about the case and disturbed by Buju’s unjust incarceration.
Organizers of the Letter Writing Campaign want to receive at least 50,000 letters to send to the Attorney General on December 9, 2011 to mark the day Buju was first arrested. They plan on sending letters all at once to increase the impact. They are encouraging friends, fans and supporters worldwide to print out this letter, sign, date and mail it by December 5, 2011 to:
Buju Banton Campaign
2101 Vista Parkway
West Palm Beach, FL 33412
BELOW IS A COPY OF THE LETTER
Mr. Eric H. Holder
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20530-0001
Dear Attorney General Holder:
I am writing to ask for your intervention regarding a grave injustice against Grammy winner and reggae music icon Buju Banton (legal name Mark Anthony Myrie). The incarceration of this legendary musician is unconscionable. He is currently serving a federal prison sentence for drug related charges.
He was charged as a result of information provided by a professional informant who relentlessly pursued Buju for six months to participate in a drug deal. The professional informant in Buju’s case is a convicted drug trafficker from Colombia. During the trial it was revealed that the informant has been granted legal immigration status in the U.S. and has earned over $3.3 million U.S. dollars (tax-free) for serving as an informant to various U.S. government agencies. Despite his earnings, Mr. Johnson testified that he does not pay taxes, does not pay his credit card bills and has declared bankruptcy. Furthermore, during the trial the lead investigator on the case, Sergeant Dan McCaffrey of the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) stated that there was no evidence that Buju was a drug trafficker and that their 13 month investigation yielded nothing.
Buju produces uplifting, positive music comparable to the music of Bob Marley. His work inspires people worldwide. He has been nominated for a Grammy Award, the highest achievement in his field, four times since 1999 and won the Grammy for Best Reggae Album in 2011 for his album “Before the Dawn”. He is one of the leading voices of his generation, shedding light on such issues as the unrelenting violence and abject poverty pervasive in the Third World. He has also represented his country in performances at the Summer Olympics in Greece in 2004 and at the Cricket World Cup Opening in 2007. Buju commemorated Jamaica’s support for President Obama collaborating with Dave Stewart on “American Prayer,” a tribute to the President. Additionally, Buju is a family man, an employer and a generous philanthropist.
Buju’s situation is similar to that of the case of Senator Stevens of Alaska who was found guilty by a jury in October of 2008. The U.S. Justice Department subsequently filed a Motion to Dismiss the Case on the grounds that the prosecution was unfair and exceeded its bounds. This act by the Justice Department did much to increase the nation’s confidence in the justice system.
Given Buju’s cultural contributions, humanitarian efforts and the unfairness of the trial, he should not be languishing in jail at U.S. taxpayers’ expense. I urge you to investigate this matter and take the action necessary to correct this grave injustice.
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