As Tommy Lee Sparta remains behind bars, his camp and supporters are becoming more agitated with the lack of progress in the popular Dancehall deejay’s scheduled questioning session with the police.
The singer was named as a person of interest in an investigation on July 6 and turned himself in to the authorities at the Freeport Police Station in Montego Bay, St James the next day as requested. He has remained detained since then, with his team appealing to fans for their support. According to the law, because of the current state of public emergency (SOE) in St James, Tommy Lee can be held for 90 days without being charged.
Last Thursday, July 9, his lawyer Ernest Smith said he wasted a day waiting for the police to show up at the St. James Police Division.
Smith told Loop News Jamaica that: “I wasted one whole day, the very persons who should have done the interviews were never informed. I was there from 11 o’clock yesterday. There were no interviews, no question-and-answer, and Superintendent [Vernon] Ellis, who we made the arrangements with, was conveniently absent from his office. C-TOC [Counter-Terrorism and Organised Crime] said no arrangements have been made to interview my client.’ I canceled several court appearances to be there.”
He also took the time to maintain Tommy Lee’s innocence, saying that the singer had moved out of Montego Bay over ten years ago.
“A senior person from CTOC gave me assurances that he would be questioned today. Tommy Lee Sparta has no connection with any gang in Montego Bay, he left Mobay over a decade ago,” Smith said.
It’s because of this that he believes Lee is simply being used as a scapegoat.
“Tommy Lee cried when he went to the station, ‘why every time I rise, you try to bring me down?’, Tommy Lee asked him. My client is being used as a scapegoat, he has lost over $100 million in revenue because there are some cops who keep locking down his shows,” he continued.
Smith is not letting the issues go and told the Jamaica Observer over the weekend that he would be compiling a file against the Jamaica Constabulary Force for “unfairly targeting” his client.
He told the Observer that: “Unfortunately, it’s the Jamaican taxpayers who will have to pay hundreds of millions of dollars that this young man has been made to lose because of a police officer with a motive to destroy him.”
Smith continues to maintain that Lee is innocent and is not a part of a gang. He added that what has been done to his client is an infringement of his rights. This is not the first time that Lee has been questioned over his alleged involvement with gang activity in Montego Bay. In fact, this is the third time in four years that he’s been detained for questioning.
“You can’t just deprive a man of his liberty like that. They [the police] said they wanted him in Montego Bay for questioning because he is a person of interest. And then he goes there… and then say you’re gonna detain the man under the state of emergency in Montego Bay, and where he was living there’s no state of emergency. He has not been told of any criminal activity or any offence that he has committed. He not been told of any offence for which he is wanted… It’s not right. It is not fair,” he continued.
Smith added that he was disappointed by the lack of progress being made by the police as he said only “one session” has commenced since Lee’s detention.
“There are seven days in every week and each day in the life of every man is important. An unlawful detention on a Sunday is as equally a detention as on Monday or Tuesday or Wednesday, or any other day,” he added.
Lee’s woes with the Jamaican Constabulary Force started in 2014 when he was detained for suspected lottery scamming-related offenses. Throughout his career, since then, he’s faced numerous run-ins with the police.