Jamaica is on fire, but drug kingpin Christopher “Dudus” Coke is still free.
Christopher "Dudus" Coke - considered one of the most important drug traffickers in the world
When the Jamaican Prime Minister Bruce Golding gave a speech on national television to announce the intention to capture and extradite to the United States the head of the drug kingpin Christopher “Dudus” Coke, he could not foresee a wave of violence that would burn the suburbs of the capital Kingston, especially the region of Tivoli Gardens.
On Friday, May 21, gangs of Coke supporters torched six police stations. The government responded on Sunday (23), installing a state of emergency for a period of one month and on Monday, launching a violent crackdown on insurgents who have made near one hundred deaths.
According to the website of Foreign Policy , the influence of Christopher “Dudus” Coke and local drug lords can be seen in all segments of society, including his own party of Prime Minister, the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP, the acronym in English). According to the site, while PM Golding yielded to American pressure to extradite Coke, parliamentary government hires lobbyists to press Washington to drop charges of drug trafficking and arms against the jamaican criminal.
The collaboration between politicians and the local drug lords started in the early 80s, according to Foreign Policy. Politicians used the traffickers to secure votes and, in turn, made a blind eye to criminal operations.
The greatest example of this connection was the presence in 1992, the then leader Edward Seaga of the JLP at the funeral of the father of Coke, Lester Lloyd “Jim Brown” Coke, responsible for transforming the drug trade in a multimillion dollar business in the country.
Christopher Coke, 41, is accused of having taken the place of a violent father and operating structure of trafficking in cocaine and marijuana centered mainly in New York but with branches across the United States. The current process in American courts also points out that he is a big smuggler of firearms.
However, despite their criminal operations, Coke is seen as a benefactor to the lower classes living in the suburbs of Kignston such as the neighborhood of Tivoli Gardens, where he had his headquarters. According to Foreign Policy, even the Jamaican middle and upper classes see Coke as a stabilizing factor in the poorer areas of Kingston.
According to Foreign Policy, the reaction of PM Golding is also an attempt to respond to escalating violence in Jamaica. In recent years, the country appeared again and again among the top five on lists of annual homicide rates.
However, for the Jamaican novelist Marlon James, even if successful, the hunt for Coke may not represent a breaking of ties between politicians and criminals. “I think they will realize that we still need each other. There’s always someone else to track where the last left. The money is very good and the business of trafficking in arms and drugs is just too easy, “James said in an interview with Foreign Policy.
Jamaican drug king´s father found family activity in Miami in the 80´s.
It was 1988 and Lester Lloyd Coke’s Shower Posse — a notorious Jamaican drug gang — was deep into gun and drug running. He was wanted in a South Florida courtroom to answer to murder and drug charges, but never made it to Miami to stand trial.
Now, two decades later, another Coke is accused of running the Shower Posse.
It’s Lester’s son, Christopher “Dudus” Coke, the man wanted for extradition by the U.S. on drug and weapons charges and the object of a manhunt that has touched off a bloody battle between Jamaican authorities and his supporters in Kingston. The government announced last week that the violence had claimed 73 lives.
“All of this old stuff is coming up again,” said Len Cartor, a former Miami-Dade police sergeant who worked in the department’s warrants bureau and arrested the father, also known as Jim Brown, in the 1980s.
Though the father has been dead for 18 years, there’s still…READ MORE HERE.