Two of the six persons who were arrested on December 18 in relation to cocaine-smuggling charges will be sentenced in the Montego Bay Resident Magistrate’s Court on February 4, after they pleaded guilty yesterday.
Thirty-four-year-old singer Garth Jobson, of an Albion address in St James, pleaded guilty to possession of, dealing in, and attempting to export five pounds of cocaine; while 29-year-old singer Ramone Rowe, of Rosemount in St James, pleaded guilty to possession of, dealing in, and attempting to export two pounds of cocaine.
The other four defendants – Kevin Tapper, Kharell Wisdom, Simone Bacchas, and Claudette Miller-Robinson – were not pleaded. They were all remanded in police custody until January 12, when their matters will be mentioned.
The allegations against Jobson and Rowe are that, on December 18, they were preparing to depart the island for New Jersey, from the Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay, when they were taken aside and interviewed by airport authorities.
The two men were subsequently taken to the Cornwall Regional Hospital, where Jobson excreted 181 pellets of cocaine, and Rowe excreted 94 pellets. The men were later arrested and charged.
On Wednesday, attorney-at-law Martyn Thomas, who is representing Rowe, asked presiding magistrate Natalie Hart-Hines to only deal with the case against Rowe and Jobson, as the lawyer for one of the other defendants was absent.
“There are six investigating officers in this matter and the circumstances against them (defendants) differ, so we wish to deal with Mr Rowe and Mr Jobson. As it relates to the other four, we wish to deal with them on a date when Mr Peter Champagnie (Tapper’s attorney) will be here,” said Thomas.
In relation to Jobson and Rowe, Hart-Hines ordered social enquiry reports and criminal records to be prepared for them, to assist in determining their sentence.
“I think we need at least six weeks for the social enquiry reports … . I will also ask for their criminal records, and that takes a little while too,” said Hart-Hines.
“Mr Jobson and Mr Rowe are remanded until February 4,” the magistrate continued, before ordering that the other four defendants be remanded until January 12.
THEIR name may be derived from their geographic location in Montego Bay, but 3rdNWest certainly know where they want to go.
“The sky’s the limit. We came up with the name 3rdNWest because it’s three of us and we are in the island’s west end,” Garth Jobson told the Jamaica Observer.
In addition to Jobson, the St James-based group comprises Karell Wisdom and Kevin Tappe, whose music combines the genres of reggae, dancehall and R&B.
The group is currently working on their yet-to-be-titled 10-track album. It is slated to be released next year.
“We have been getting great feedback from our single Wine, which was produced by Gifton Smith. It is aimed at the ladies and is a dancehall song,” said Jobson.
Group member Wisdom shared how the group came together.
“We have known each other for eight years, but the group was originally formed in 2012 when the other groups, which we were part of, split,” he said.
All in their 30s, Wisdom and Tappe are originally from Kingston, but relocated to the tourist capital. Jobson, on the other hand, is a native of the parish.
“We were working in the hotel industry and familiar with the music business. So when the groups split, I came up with the idea of forming another group with just the three of us and the others agreed,” said 35-year-old Jobson.
Wisdom, a former Edna Manley College student, shared what made them different from other groups.
“We are singing mature songs that everyone can listen to and geared towards a more mature audience,” he said.
“And when we are not in the studio, you can find us performing individually at hotels in Montego Bay like Sandals Montego Bay, Sandals Royal, Sandals Carlyle, among others,” said Wisdom.
The group’s other release is Youths Them Mind.