June 24th, 2010
12:56 PM ET

Alleged Jamaican drug lord extradited to U.S.

Christopher "Dudus" Coke has said he won't fight extradition to the U.S. for drug charges.

Christopher "Dudus" Coke, the alleged Jamaican drug kingpin, was put on a plane with U.S. marshals after declining to fight his extradition to the U.S. on Thursday afternoon, according to several sources.

Coke did not contest the extradition, his lawyer said, because he wanted to leave his country immediately and face gun and drug charges in the United States.

Peter Bunting, general secretary of the opposition People's National Party, told CNN in an e-mail stamped 2:30 p.m. ET that Coke was at the airport awaiting to be transported to the United States, and a Jamaican Information Service report said he was flown off the island early in the afternoon. It was not clear to where he would fly, but the indictment against him was handed up in New York.

Coke released a statement through his lawyers saying he made the decision to be extradited despite his belief that he would have been vindicated by Jamaican courts.

"I take this decision for I now believe it to be in the best interest of my family, the community of West Kingston, and in particular, the people of Tivoli Gardens and, above all, Jamaica," the statement said.

He further said he was "deeply upset and saddened" for many Jamaicans, including the security forces who were killed. The situation could have been avoided, Coke said in his statement asking that Jamaicans pray for him.

Regarding concerns that those loyal to Coke would stir up trouble, parliament member Peter Phillips, a former national security minister and senior member of the opposition, said there has been little unrest in West Kingston or Tivoli Gardens because the government declared a state of emergency last month and put troops in the streets.

Things have been quiet in West Kingston because of the “dislocation of the criminal groups that are able to mount some kind of resistance,” he said, referring to the weeks-long violence between government security forces and gunmen alleged to be loyal to Coke.

Affidavits from two confidential informants form the basis for charges that Coke, 41, has pumped cocaine and hundreds of pounds of marijuana into the United States.

One witness quoted in the affidavit said Coke used women to "body-carry," or smuggle internally, the cocaine and travel to New York under the guise of purchasing clothing for their shops in Kingston.

Coke's associates said they also sent him guns packed in refrigerators, according to documents CNN obtained.

Coke, who was known for controlling the impoverished West Kingston enclave of Tivoli Gardens, is likened by experts to both Robin Hood and Pablo Escobar. But comparisons to the hero of Sherwood Forest and the one-time Colombian kingpin are not mutually exclusive.

Coke rules via a combination of violence, corruption and philanthropy, experts say, and unrest in the Jamaican capital resulted from competing interests: those who want him handed over for drug crimes versus those who consider him a benefactor.

The opposition made allegations that the Jamaican government participated in shielding Coke from authorities. The prime minister and other have denied the allegations.

Phillips believes an investigative commission should be appointed to probe whether there was an effort by the ruling Labor Party to “prevent and frustrate the extradition request.” The opposition will call for such a commission, but Phillips said to expect other segments of society to join the opposition’s demand.

Jamaicans deserve to “understand the activities that took place and the apparent conduct of members of government on the political and the administrative side,” Phillips said. “We need to know if there was an attempt to obstruct justice on behalf of the government.”

“There are still questions left to be answered,” he said.

soundoff (40 Responses)
  1. damiao


    June 24, 2010 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
  2. mymiracles

    If he wants to leave his country immediately and face charges in the US....................look out!!!
    Jamaica was turned upside down protecting this man. Trust me....he has plans!!

    June 24, 2010 at 1:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • sagebrush

      He will probably convert to Islam while in jail. Then he will claim religious persecution and ethnic profiling. He will be granted a hearing and a sympathetic judge will set aside his sentence and award him $10,000,000 in damages. That's the plan, and it just might work.

      June 24, 2010 at 5:45 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Yaeger

    Of course he wants to come to the US. Jamaica wants him in jail too. US jail is vacation compared to Jamaica

    June 24, 2010 at 2:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • David

      Yaeger and Omg those are pretty ignorant statements to make, don't post stuff if you don't know what you're talking about.

      June 24, 2010 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • AZ623

      With the status this guy has, I'm sure his time would not be spent as you think it would!

      June 24, 2010 at 4:19 pm | Report abuse |
  4. OMG

    Yeah because doing hard time in the USA is like staying in a upscale hotel there. Clean, bug free, healthy nutritious food, medical care and dental care, what more could he ask for? Dude he is a drug smuggler not stupid, he knows where he can live it up good. Not to mention he will make more money selling drugs in a US prison than most Americans made last year! Duh!

    June 24, 2010 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Susan

    It burns me up that these guys get rich selling marijuana and cocaine, but the U.S. collects absolutely nothing since criminals don't pay taxes either. For every one of them who spends time in jail, there's a dozen more who don't ever get caught. Shoot this guy at dawn, but get busy and legalize this activity so we can put him out of business and make the profit ourselves.

    June 24, 2010 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • paul

      put him out of business and make the money ourselves,,, are you going into the drug business??

      June 24, 2010 at 6:17 pm | Report abuse |
  6. brad

    We have no one to blame for drug lords, other than our own prohibitionist policies that enrich and empower them. We need some honest self assessment, so long as there is a demand someone will be willing to meet it. If the demand is unquenchable (which it is) then prohibition leads to a black market, which naturally leads to increased crime and violence.. After 40 years and over a trillion spent on the 'war on drugs' (which would be more accurately described as war on people) drug use, purity, availability has remained virtually unchanged. It is well past time that we stop the insanity and chart a course that history tells us will work: end prohibition, regulate and tax.

    June 24, 2010 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Texas Pete

      You could say the same exact things about pedefelia.

      June 24, 2010 at 4:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • DJL

      If only that were a word ...

      June 24, 2010 at 5:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • hellae


      June 24, 2010 at 5:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • brad

      no.. pedophilia is not a victimless crime; Drug use is. The comparison is wrong and you probably know it. No one has ever suggested that it would be legal to be intoxicated and drive, or that it would be legal for a 12 year old to buy heroin. We will still enforce our laws against drug 'ABUSE' that endangers others.
      We need to treat drug abuse has a health issue, instead of a criminal one. If we spent even a fraction of that Trillion we have spent over the last 40 years on addition programs, we would make infinitely more progress than locking someone up at a cost of $30,000 a year per inmate to the taxpayers. The only way we can make ANY progress on drug addiction is when we separate the crime and violence that stems from the black market that is created through prohibition... This is common sense stuff.

      June 24, 2010 at 5:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Talgrath

      @TexasPete Your spelling indicates you're ignorant, but I'll bite. There's a difference between pedophilia and drug use though, drug use only directly harms yourself (with the sole exception of doing drugs while pregnant) while pedophliia directly harms another person (the child). It's like the difference between suicide and murder; granted suicide makes other people feel sad and hurts them indirectly, but directly you only harm yourself; murder directly harms another being by killing them (usually painfully). Comparing drug use to pedophilia is, I suspect, just an attempt to paint drug use in a more negative light by association rather than an honest argument, but unfortunately for you, the two aren't even remotely related.

      June 24, 2010 at 6:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • Namey namey

      he he!

      June 24, 2010 at 6:34 pm | Report abuse |
  7. sanjeev

    this guy should be left alone.

    and US government should stop telling people what they can or can not do. if people want drugs, then so be it. people are not kids. maybe, in US, they are.

    June 24, 2010 at 4:04 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Tropicsun

    Coke's father was mysteriously burnt in his jail cell in Jamaica to the point that his body could only be identified by dental records. The only flammable thing in the concrete cell was the mattress. There were deposits of unburned phosphorous found on the walls of the cell. In other words, it was a "hit." His son knows that if he were in a Jamaican jail he would meet a similar fate – he knows too much about too many people in high places. He doesn't want to live in a country club prison – he just wants to live. Legalize it and stop the killing.

    June 24, 2010 at 4:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • T

      Thanks for actually knowing what ur talking about!!!!! 🙂

      June 24, 2010 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • LadyJazz

      You are so right sometimes you have to school people on certain things

      June 24, 2010 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |

    Susan has the right idea!! Way to go!! Legalize it and Visualize the END of our deficit!!!! Or....Keep spending into the negative you stupid, stupid GOVERNMENT!

    June 24, 2010 at 4:23 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Janie

    Drugs should be legal. Who cares if other people use? If you are anti drug dont use!
    This guys is a hero because politicians are idiots. Make it legal and tax his azz!

    June 24, 2010 at 4:36 pm | Report abuse |
  11. LadyJazz

    Well lets sit back and watch the outcome and if any of the Jamaican politicians will be held accountable for their role in all that has happened in Jamaica Peter Phillips and the whole Opposition hands are as dirty as the JLP they all contribute to the downfall of Jamaica...At least Michael Manley know when to Bow out you all should folloe suit ....Go figure out why Portia Simpson has not been seen in public crucifying DUDUS, because if all the conversations were taped you all will hear her voice on some of them and when Bruce Golding ask the man to kill 3 people and he refuse he sudden become wanted by the USA...Justice will prevail contrary to what you think about the USA court system

    June 24, 2010 at 4:51 pm | Report abuse |
  12. why

    why would he want to face charges in the US?

    did he commit the crimes here?

    not our problem

    June 24, 2010 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • LadyJazz

      According to the USA he did while living in Jamaica with friends who live in The USA they were caught selling drugs they say it belong to DUDUS and they shipped guns to him in Jamaica, the USA had refuse to stop the Guns going to Jamaica as Guns were not illegal in the USA.. go figure

      June 24, 2010 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Updated info

      Yes he did commit crimes in the us in new york..he came here under a fictious name,, and that is why no one actually knows the truth but the feds do..duh!!!

      June 24, 2010 at 6:07 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Criss

    People love to talk things they don't know. The only reason why he is not fighting extradition is because he doesn't want to suffer the same fate as his father. His father fought extradition to the US in the early 90s. While sitting in a Jamaican jail, someone(possibly the Jamiacan Government he was in bed with) decided he was better to be dead than to be a singing bird to the US, so he was set on fire in his cell one nite.

    June 24, 2010 at 5:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • AZ623

      If he was fighting extradition to the US, then why would the Jamaican Gov't think he was going to sing to the US?

      June 24, 2010 at 5:36 pm | Report abuse |
  14. brad

    Why he is choosing not to fight extradition is kinda silly side subject.. maybe Jamaican prisons are dangerous, maybe he is just a great guy, who knows, who cares. The greater point is, even if you do extradite this guy and send him to prison for the rest of his life.. 2 or 3 people will replace him. We are never addressing the root of the evil: Prohibitionist policies in the US. We empower and enrich ruthless (and sometimes robin hood types like Mr. Coke) drug lords. Instead of regulating the market ourselves and gaining benefit to society through increased revenue, we send all the profits to the 'Pablo Escabars' of the world.... It was not the Elliot Nesses who brought down Al Capone and other bootleggers.. it was ending prohibition. We need to learn from history. End prohibition, regulate and tax drugs. I can think of better ways to spend a trillion dollars.

    June 24, 2010 at 5:39 pm | Report abuse |
  15. ZOOMER165

    drill baby drill!!!

    June 24, 2010 at 5:45 pm | Report abuse |
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