Reggae Singer Buju Banton Convicted on Cocaine Charges

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Reggae singer Buju Banton was convicted by a federal jury Tuesday of conspiring to set up a cocaine sale in 2009. The Jamaican recording artist, whose Before the Dawn won the Grammy for best reggae album on Feb. 20, faces at least 15 years in prison for his role in a drug deal between Tampa dealers and what turned out to be a paid Drug Enforcement Agency informant.

Banton, whose real name is Mark Myrie, did not react when the jury read its verdict, notes the Associated Press. Instead, he hugged his attorneys, blew kisses to his many supporters present in the Florida courtroom and told them "Thank you."

Banton was found guilty of three charges: conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute cocaine; possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking offense; and using a telephone to facilitate a drug trafficking offense.

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