The conviction of Jamaican dancehall artist Vybz Kartel for the murder of a friend over ten years ago was overturned on Thursday, according to a London court decision that found attempts to bribe the trial jury rendered the verdict unsafe. 

The musician, whose real name is Adidja Palmer, is among the most well-known in Jamaica and has worked with artists like Rihanna and Jay-Z. 


Since 2011, Kartel, 48, has been incarcerated in Jamaica due to the unaccounted-for disappearance of his associate Clive "Lizard" Williams.

2014 saw the conviction of Kartel and three other defendants following a trial that lasted 64 days in Kingston, Jamaica, which was one of the longest trials ever. Kartel was given a life sentence with a minimum of 35 years in prison; however, this was later lowered to 32 and a half years on appeal. 

Kartel and his co-defendants launched their last appeal at the Privy Council in London, the previous month. This court serves as the last court of appeal in Jamaica and a few other Commonwealth nations. 

Their attorneys contended that the trial judge erred in handling one juror's claim that he paid other jurors 500,000 Jamaican dollars, or about $3,200, in exchange for not-guilty verdicts.

Judge David Lloyd-Jones granted the defendants' appeals on Thursday, stating that the trial judge's choice to permit the juror accused of accepting bribes to remain on the jury was "fatal to the safety of the convictions." 

The Court of Appeal in Jamaica was remanded in the case by the Privy Council to determine whether Kartel and his co-defendants should go through another trial.