Thu | Oct 6, 2022

‘It is total falsehood’ — Popcaan's legal team to file lawsuit against JCF

Published:Thursday | July 7, 2022 | 12:11 AMStephanie Lyew/Gleaner Writer -
Popcaan
Popcaan

Popcaan’s legal team is working overtime to draft a claim against the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF).

The JCF stated in a release on Wednesday that an International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) green notice alerting authorities to a drug-related conviction may have led to the immigration issues faced by Jamaican dancehall artiste Popcaan in the United Kingdom on Tuesday.

However, Bert Samuels, Popcaan's attorney, is refuting this claim.

According to Samuels, the statement released by the Corporate Communications Unit on stop order allegations against Andre Sutherland, Popcaan’s given name, were not accurate.

“It is total falsehood,” Samuels told The Gleaner, adding that “Mr Sutherland was never charged with any possession of cocaine.”

The lawyer shared that the legal team was currently “drafting a claim for this cocaine mischief”, which he will make an effort to have "filed in court in the morning”.

Samuels explained that the only charges were for the possession of marijuana in 2009 and that since then, it has been expunged from the artiste’s criminal record in Barbados.

SMOKING A SPLIFF

The offence was minor, said Samuels, as Popcaan was not involved in any exportation of marijuana but was merely approached by an officer “for smoking a spliff, to which he pleaded guilty and paid the fine".

“Because of the falsehood of the JCF’s statement, we do not accept any statement from them whatsoever. They are seeking to shift the blame on someone. Barbados could never have told them there were charges on cocaine because there were never any, and at no time, did we ever apply to get any cocaine charges expunged,” he said.

“My client has never been charged, tried, or arrested for cocaine in Barbados, so I do not trust the JCF on this. They are seeking to kick the ball away from Jamaica, and they are doing it through a falsehood,” Samuels continued.

Robert Nesta Morgan, minister without portfolio with responsibility for information in the Office of the Prime Minister, on Wednesday tweeted that Prime Minister Andrew Holness had been apprised of the situation and was speaking with the minister of national security and commissioner of police to review Popcaan's situation "with a view to help facilitate ease of travel as an entertainer".

Popcaan is currently in London. Last month, in an interview with Clash 122 Magazine out of London, the dancehall entertainer said that he was taking his iconic Unruly Fest to Europe for summer 2022. The events would take place in Croatia and London, though no details of the date have been announced.

stephanie.lyew@gleanerjm.com