The attorneys for a Jamaican man named by a United States publication as the person who led American prosecutors to alleged drug kingpin Christopher ‘Dudus’ Coke are adamant that their client was never an informant for the United States government.

The attorneys are expressing fear that the man’s family, which still has links with west Kingston, could be harmed if persons believe the claim that he is an informant.  “Lloyd Reid is not an informant,” asserted New York-based attorney Kate MacMillan.  She had worked with Jeremy Schneider to defend Reid when he was charged in the US.  Reid was charged with gun and drug offences in late 2008. He was found guilty of the narcotics offences and sentenced to five years in prison.

Charge dropped

MacMillan said Reid was accused of using a firearm in relation to the narcotics offence, but the charge did not stick.   A report in The New York Times claimed that Lloyd Reid squealed on Coke and was an informant for the US government in its gun and narcotics case against the ousted west Kingston strongman

But MacMillan maintained that her client would not have gone to trial if he had brokered a deal with prosecutors.  “He went to trial to dispute the allegations against him and was sentenced to five years, the mandatory minimum sentence that he could receive,” the attorney said. “He fought the case to its conclusion. That would not happen if he had co-operated with the government.”

MacMillan told The Gleaner that at least nine other persons were indicted along with Reid, a Jamaican who grew up in the United States.  Marco Miranda and Jaimie Sandoval were among at least 10 persons named in the original indictment. The list also included at least five Jamaicans, four of whom originated in inner-city communities across the Corporate Area and St Catherine.

“As far as I know, my client was the only one who went to trial,” said MacMillan. “The Miranda brothers were among some of the people who pled guilty.”  MacMillan disclosed that one of those who was convicted cooperated with prosecutors in the case against Reid.  “Everybody was questioned as standard procedure, but my client did not cop a deal, enter a plea, or make any written statement.”

MacMillan told The Gleaner that she did not know how the rumour started, but noted that Reid had spoken to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, as had all the other persons who had been indicted.

Concerns

MacMillan expressed concern for the safety of Reid’s family in Jamaica.  “It’s a pity that we could not talk sooner … . It is frightening for his family … . We can say, 100 per cent, that he did not cooperate with the government.”   But there are allegations that one of the 10 persons in the original indictment could be used as a witness in the case involving Coke, who returns to court next month.

He will be represented by attorneys-at-law Elizabeth Macedonio and Steve Zissou.