It’s turning into an uphill battle for Dancehall artiste Tommy Lee Sparta as he and his lawyer try to regain his freedom after being detained by police about two weeks ago. This as the Parliament in Jamaica has announced that they will be extending the term of the states of emergency to September 3.
Sparta has been in jail for the last two weeks and could be held for up to 90 days, which would take his incarceration into September.
Police said that they are trying to determine if he has connected to a surge in crime and violence that has been plaguing the St James parish including his former home community of Flanker.
A police source told the Jamaica Gleaner that: “The Uptown Sparta Gang has been linked to several serious criminal offences committed in Flankers (St James) and Washington Gardens and Mountain View in Kingston. … There might be a case for him to answer.”
The Gleaner also indicated that Sparta has been grilled for hours by police trying to establish if there is any link with him and the ongoing gang war in Flankers. Even though the deejay, whose real name is Leroy Russell Jr, is originally from Flankers, he has been living in Kingston for several years.
It’s been rough for Tommy Lee Sparta who has already faced six question-and-answer sessions with the police so far as investigations continue. Sparta has not been faring well and was rushed to hospital on July 16 because of a stomach condition. It was reported that he was feeling nauseous while in custody.
His attorney Ernest Smith confirmed the developments and told the Jamaica Observer in an interview on July 16 that the Blessings artiste was taken into medical care for examination and, subsequently, discharged.
“He was taken to the Cornwall Regional Hospital for treatment and subsequently, discharged,” he said.
Smith continues to defend his client’s innocence and has already threatened a multi-million lawsuit against the state. Smith also revealed to The Gleaner that Sparta has been interviewed by the Counter-Terrorism and Organised Crime Investigation Branch and Organised Crime Investigation Division, among other agencies.
“They have no charge against him; they want to question him. He has not been told anything of any offence he has committed,” said Smith.
“He has not been told that he is inciting anything. He is just told that he has influence over a gang by the name of Sparta Gang,” he continued.