Privy Council to hear appeal from Jamaica in Shawn Campbell & 3 others v The King


In 2014 four Jamaican individuals, including the well-known dancehall artist “Vybz Kartel” (aka Adidja Palmer), were convicted of murder by a Jamaican Court. It followed one of the longest-running and widely publicised murder trials in Caribbean history. The individuals are now appellants challenging the safety of their murder convictions before the Privy Council.

The issue in this appeal is whether their convictions are safe in light of the following grounds of challenge:

  1. Should the trial judge have excluded the telecommunications evidence relied on by the prosecution? This ground raises issues of broad importance regarding constitutional rights protection under the Jamaican Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms.
  2. How should the judge have handled the allegations that there were attempts to bribe members of the jury during the trial? Should the jury (or the particular juror said to have offered the bribes) have been discharged?
  3. Was the judge wrong to invite the jury to reach a verdict late in the day, given the special circumstances of the case?

Hugh Southey KC, James Robottom, and Anirudh Mathur represent two of the four appellants with John Clarke (Jamaican attorney) and Saul Lehrfreund, Killian Moran, Kane Nosworthy and Bethany Jackson at Simons Muirhead Burton.

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