Jamaica State of Emergency Explained; Best of the Best Concert Still On

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Christopher "Dudus" Coke
As we posted yesterday, Kingston, Jamaica still remains under a state of siege by gang members, and both they and Jamaican officials have blockaded streets throughout the capital city. At the center of it all is Christopher "Dudus" Coke, a notorious drug lord with bloody local roots. In the late '80s, he terrorized the Caribbean communities of South Florida with his gang, the Shower Posse, so named for its penchant to spray bullets indiscriminately when going after an enemy.

Miami New Times' news blog, Riptide 2.0, gives you the scoop on his local ties:
The posse's penchant for bloodshed rivaled that of the era's notorious Colombian cocaine cowboys. "They operated without any kind of ethics or morals," says Joe Vince, a former Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agent. "When they suspected that one of their members was cooperating with the authorities, they killed that individual, cut him up with a chainsaw, put him in a 50-gallon drum, and sent it to his mother in Jamaica. They relied on intimidation."
Click here to read the full story.

While Coke's henchmen wreak havoc on Kingston, though, the fate of Sunday's Best of the Best concert hinges on travel restrictions. If an extradition agreement isn't reached soon, authorities may block access to the city's international airport, effectively preventing almost the entire bill of performers from leaving the island.

Still, on a positive note, as of today travel is still possible. CNN reported this morning that Manley International Airport's main exit is still open, and all flights are departing and arriving on schedule. As such, Best of the Best organizers are continuing to operate as though it's business as usual, and the concert is definitely still on.

We'll continue to post updates on the situation in Jamaica, and its effect on the concert. Stay tuned.

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