Buju Banton, Jamaican Grammy-award-winning reggae artist, is scheduled to be released from a federal prison in the United States after completing his ten-year sentence on drug-related charges on December 8, 2018. Plans are already being made for Banton to make a series of appearances in what is being called his “Long Walk to Freedom” tour. According to Ronnie Tomlinson, Banton’s publicist, has to be sent back to his homeland of Jamaica upon his release, and steps are being taken to make this process as short and hassle-free as possible. The artist will be placed in the custody of US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) after his release. Tomlinson reported that Banton has created a team to manage his affairs upon his re-entry to society.
Banton’s legal status to work and travel in the US has been rescinded due to his drug conviction, but he has hired a legal team to handle this part of his release details. The lawyers have already taken legal steps to “circumvent” the process, Banton is not fighting his immigration status and has chosen voluntary deportation, so when the sentence ends, he should be back in Jamaica quickly. Banton, whose real name is Mark Myrie, is described as being in good spirits and eager to get out of the US penal system. His first appearance is scheduled for Jamaica, although the date and venue have yet to be announced. Banton, who has always said he was innocent of the charges, was arrested at his Florida home in January 2009 by US Drug Enforcement agents on suspicion of conspiring to distribute over five kilos of cocaine. His sentence was reduced by one month after prosecutors dropped a firearms possession charge.