The Grammy-winning reggae musician Buju Banton was sentenced to 10 years in prison and five years probation for his involvement in a cocaine deal. He was found guilty on three charges, according to Seattle Pi, including conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine, possession of a firearm and facilitation of drug trafficking via telephone.
Banton’s attorney David Markus asked for a little more leniency on the charge, contending that Banton’s involvement in the deal was minimal and that society would not benefit from his arrest. Markus made claims that Banton is not a drug dealer and, due to his charitable work in Jamaica and his otherwise clean record, the sentence should be lowered by the court.
The evidence that was used to arrest Banton was based off of meetings and phone calls that were taped by an informant working for the Drug Enforcement Administration, according to Seattle Pi. The informant made $50,000 in commission due to the bust.
Banton, born Mark Anthony Myrie in Kingston, Jamaica, reached the peak of his reggae career when he won a Grammy for his 2010 album Before The Dawn. Banton’s involvement in the Rastafari movement spans over his earlier albums, and he is known for his outspoken lyrics and ideals over political matters.