Gosh you guys, so many stories, so little time. That’s what I get for taking a vacation. 🙂 If need be, I will hang out this weekend with you all if I cannot get to all of these rather interesting stories.
The final story I am sharing today is the Burna Boy story recently reported by Thenetng.
Raise your hands if you have not heard of or at least know someone in our communities who has either committed a crime, served time or got deported. Is it just me or the fact that I am also a criminal defense attorney, because I know quite a handful. I believe, strongly, that people can and do redeem themselves. I believe in second chances.
I also believe and find that within the African community, especially Nigerian community, there are some difficult but important issues we need to take head on but we don’t. Examples of such issues are the prevailing and increasing criminal arrests and conviction of our young people. Another example is the absolute and terrible pattern and practice of Nigerian parents sending their children, solo, to Western shores, in their teenage/formative years, to study. This we are seeing is creating issues for the public and world at large, especially where the kids are not well adjusted psychologically from the trauma of leaving and missing their families. The final pressing issue is the dysfunction in the lives of many our young people as a result of the absence of their fathers. Some of our men are failing to be “African” by taking care of and being present in the lives of their children.
We need to be having these discussions, we are not. Instead, we wait for cases that get global attention before we deal. When we deal, it is to ostracize the persons affected.
I am not sure what the point of this Burna Boy story specific to his criminal past, as revealed by Thenetng, is all about. I say this particularly because adults and juveniles are, for the most part, treated differently in the criminal justice system, at least here in the USA. I presume the UK, since many of our laws derive from the UK, is similarly situated.
Accordingly, if you will report about a crime committed by a minor who was part of an alleged gang, then it would seem to me the story should be a bit more well developed as to the context, have precise clarity as to kind of and alleged crime comitted, and what the time he did really was for.
The way Netng writes this story, it appears to say Burna Boy was also arrested and convicted, as a juvenile, for murder. Based on the sentencing also reported, I highly doubt this version of the facts are true.
These stories can and do have negative impacts on the lives of those affected and to me should be approached with a bit more due diligence if the media chooses to report on them.
To be clear, I don’t see any issue with reporting Burna Boy was deported from the UK as a result of his involvement in criminal conduct of which he was arrested and convicted for. Neither do I see any issue with reporting about his label issues and the fracas that may be ongoing or the loss of endorsement deals.
I do see, however, an issue with the specific reporting that his criminal conviction was an alleged murder without nothing more.
First, the Netng claims Burna Boy was arrested for being a part of a gang. – Okay.
Next, it claims he was also arrested for stabbing someone to death, tried as a minor and sent to jail. – This is where I really have an issue.
For stabbing someone to death, you don’t get only an 11months sentence and then you are placed on probation (or “parole”), unless the criminal justice system is that corrupt in the UK. I find it really hard to believe a black boy would get off that easy. Regardless of who his father is, I don’t think the British criminal justice system would give a black/Nigerian boy 11months for stabbing someone to death.
Also, if indeed he stabbed someone to death, because of the heinousness of the crime, there is a high probability that the UK just like the USA, would have tried Burna as an adult, not a juvenile. I think thenetng needed to parse it out and let us know whether the charges he was tried and convicted for was exclusively for belonging to a gang; or did it include his alleged murdering of the victim in that case.
In other words, don’t leave it blurry so people think that this man was convicted for murder, especially if it turns out he was not. You have a duty to be clear especially on facts like these.
Maybe it is just me i.e. I am reading the reported facts differently. So you tell me how you understand the facts as reported (to be).
Have a fantastic day.
An excerpt follows:
Burn Boy’s ‘uncontrollable’ mannerism and persona didn’t just start yesterday; NET investigations and sources have linked him to a criminal past, a period of his life he would rather not make public knowledge.
We are told on good authority that while in the UK back in 2010, Burna Boy was arrested by London Police for allegedly being part of a gang and stabbing someone to death. He was tried as a minor and sent to jail.
After 11 months, he was released and given two months parole plus community service on the grounds of being of ‘good behaviour’. But Burna is said to have disobeyed authorities and travelled back to Nigeria where he signed a record deal with Aristokrat.
He later travelled back to the UK but was arrested at the airport and deported to Nigeria. He is currently barred from the UK for the next 15 years.
Thenetng has the full story.
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