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Jamaican Drug Lord Seeks U.S. Exit Deal

Thursday, 27 May 2010 08:36 AM

Desperate to end the bloodbath on the streets of Kingston from four days of shootouts between Jamaican security forces and supporters of a fugitive drug lord, US officials are negotiating his surrender to face federal cocaine trafficking and gun-running charges in New York, The Post has learned.

The lawyer of accused drug kingpin Christopher "Dudus" Coke has been in contact with US authorities about a voluntary extradition, a source said.

The source speculated that Coke wants to avoid being killed by Jamaican police and troops who are attacking his stronghold in the capital city.

As many as 49 people have been killed in Kingston since Monday, when Jamaican authorities stormed a slum where Coke resides after Prime Minister Bruce Golding decided to extradite him to face trial in Manhattan after months of opposing such a move.

Most of the dead were young men, gang supporters of Coke, who were killed when heavily armed security forces stormed the Tivoli Gardens slum that US prosecutors say served as a "garrison" for his supporters.

Up to 500 people have been detained in connection with the search for Coke, reputed head of a criminal organization known as the Shower Posse, which murdered hundreds of people by "showering" them with bullets during the 1980s cocaine wars.

"Security forces are under extreme pressure now," said Mark Shields, Jamaica's former deputy police commissioner, who now runs a private security firm. "We have urban war going on."

The US Justice Department calls Coke "one of the world's most dangerous narcotics kingpins," but in Jamaica, he also has cultivated the image of a Robin Hood whose minions dole out food and cash to poor residents.

Coke, 41, was indicted in 2007 in Manhattan federal court for conspiracy to distribute marijuana and cocaine, and for firearms-trafficking conspiracy. The charges, which became public only this week, carry a mandatory sentence of life in prison if he's convicted, and millions of dollars in fines.

To read full New York Post story — Go Here Now.



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Desperate to end the bloodbath on the streets of Kingston from four days of shootouts between Jamaican security forces and supporters of a fugitive drug lord, US officials are negotiating his surrender to face federal cocaine trafficking and gun-running charges in New York, The Post has learned.<
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Thursday, 27 May 2010 08:36 AM
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