UPDATE: Buju Banton Takes Stand in Drug Case, Says Wanted to Impress Informant

Reggae Dancehall entertainer Buju Banton took the stand in his drug trial that kicked off on Monday, denying allegations he attempted to buy cocaine from an undercover, insisting he lied about purpose to deal illegal substances to “impress” his new comrade. Banton claimed undercover officer Alexander Johnson struck up a conversation about drugs with him and he boasted about fake plans to become a dealer in a bid to “impress” the informant, who he believed had good contacts in the music industry. “I was trying to impress this guy. I wasn’t going to let him out talk me. That’s what got me into this hot seat,” He told the Florida court. “I was just talking straight up garbage. I liked hanging out with Mr. Johnson. He could talk all he wanted to talk, but I wasn’t going to engage in it.” Banton also said he was caught off guard when cocaine was actually presented at a videotaped meeting last December (10), because he thought it was all talk. “I didn’t know I was going to see any drugs,” he said. “And if I had known I was going to see drugs, I wouldn’t have gone.” According to Tampabay.com, Stephen Marley, the son of late music legend Bob Marley, previously took the stand as a character witness for Banton, insisting he has known the star for 20 years and he has “never” heard his friend discuss drugs. Banton is facing a life sentence for allegedly trying to buy drugs last summer (2009). He has denied charges of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine and aiding and abetting two others in possessing a firearm during the course of distribution. Banton’s attorneys say the government’s informant entrapped him. The case continues…


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