Judge Denies Buju Banton's Request for New Trial

Federal Judge James Moody on Tuesday denied Buju Banton's request for a new trial. In his decision, the judge wrote that there is no need for a new trial in light of an Atlanta appeals court's ruling that there was sufficient evidence to convict the reggae star on a gun charge.

Under the new ruling, Buju's sentence could be extended from ten years to 15 years.

Buju's attorney, David Oscar Markus, tells New Times that he plans on appealing the case again.

A federal jury found Buju guilty of three drug charges and a gun charge. During a sentencing hearing last June, Moody tossed the gun charge due to the fact that Buju had never met or spoke with James Mack, a guy who drove to Florida from Georgia with a gun his car to buy five kilos of cocaine from a confidential informant. It's unclear if Buju was aware that the drug deal was even taking place; he was hundreds of miles away from the actual drug deal when the DEA arrested him.

Markus tells New Times that a new sentencing hearing will be scheduled, but it's unclear when that will happen. We'll keep you posted as things develop.

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