Jah Cure has been convicted for attempted manslaughter in the Netherlands and will spend years in prison.
A court graphic showed the singer listening to his interpreter with a confused look on his face as he is told that he was found guilty of attempted manslaughter for stabbing a Dutch-Jamaican promoter in October of 2021 and will be spending six years behind bars.
Jah Cure leaves behind his mother and daughter while serving his prison sentence abroad. The King of Lover’s Rock and Roots Reggae has once again drawn a mix of ire and sympathy as many look on at his self-destructing actions over the past years since his release from jail, leading to a return to jail.
On Tuesday, the Public Prosecution Service of the Netherlands released a statement on the verdict. According to reports from several Dutch news service websites, the court described Jah Cure’s actions towards Nicardo Blake as a “seemingly rather trivial conflict’ that he “blew up and escalated” when he stabbed the promoter in the abdomen, causing his stomach to perforate.
The decision by the court was weighed heavily by threatening voice messages he had sent to Blake, which was turned over to the police. According to the Public Prosecution Service, which had demanded eight years in prison and a murder conviction, the voice notes proved that Jah Cure had a preconceived plan to maim or kill the promoter.
However, the court found the evidence for attempted murder to not be enough to satisfy the burden and element of intention and instead found attempted manslaughter to be proven.
Jah Cure, who was represented by a Dutch lawyer, had sought to rely on the self-defense principle stating that he was afraid of the promoter with whom he had ‘violent quarrels” with and for that reason, he had kept a knife in his pocket.
On October 1, while on the Dam Square, Jah Cure claimed that he saw that the concert promoter also had a knife, which he seemed to grab when he walked straight towards him. He claimed that he was forced to stab the promoter to defend himself. However, the court rejected his story.
The singer’s arrest and conviction have been swift and unusual for a country like Jamaica which is bogged down by many cases due to the high rate of crime on the island. On the contrary, the Netherlands has one of the lowest rates of crime in the world in a country that has legalized marijuana and prostitution.
One of the arguments made by the Prosecution against Jah Cure was that his actions threatened the status quo of peace and non-violence that existed in the European country and ought to be dealt with swiftness to send a message to the rest of society.
The events leading up to Jah Cure’s latest legal troubles were as any normal musician who was traveling and enjoying the time he was meeting and greeting his fans.
Timeline of Events
Arrival in Amsterdam
Jah Cure was in the country to perform at the Melkweg, a popular concert hall and cultural centre. The Melkweg venue show was promoted by Roots Vibes Entertainment, owned by the stabbing victim Nicardo Blake also known as Papa. His Netherlands stop was part of a European tour that started in August 2021, beginning in Germany, Amsterdam, the Bomboclaat Festival in Belgium, Barcelona, Spain then onto the Netherlands.
Jah Cure was arrested on Saturday, October 2, 2021, at the City Centre of Utrecht a day after he stabbed Blake over the monies that were owed to him.
Blake had emergency surgery on October 2 early in the morning and was on the way to recovery, the Prosecution Service had reported.
The Reggae singer was arraigned on Tuesday, October 5, 2021, on multiple charges, including primary suspicion of attempted murder, attempted manslaughter, aggravated assault, or attempted aggravated assault.
He was held without bail and was further remanded to 14 days in jail while the police investigation continued.
Jah Cure celebrated his birthday behind prison walls on October 11, and on October 12, he shared upcoming music on his Instagram account.
A video was shared to his account with the location tagged “Freedom”. In the video, he is wearing a burgundy coat and a black outfit along with a burnt orange side bag and some white Prada boots.
“Never put too much trust in any man, suspect everyone trust no one,” his post read on Instagram. “#HappyBirthday to all my #libras #LibraSeason #LibraNation #Liberators…New music coming soon #Freedom,” the post read.
Pre-trial detention extended to October 26
The artist appeared in court on Monday, October 18, after being held for two weeks but was ordered to be detained for another seven days and given another date to appear at the Council Chamber, part of the Amsterdam court.
Pre-trial detention extended for another 83 days
The singer appeared in court again on October 26 and had his pre-trial detention extended for another 83 days while the prosecution moved for a time to prepare for his trial. Jah Cure did not have legal counsel up to this time.
His trial was set for mid-January 2022.
“The total period of pre-trial arrest cannot exceed 110 days: six days in police custody, 14 days in detention and 90 days on remand. Court proceedings must begin within this period. At the beginning of January 2022 the suspect will be summoned to appear at the Amsterdam court in an open session,” Franklin Wattimena, press officer of the Netherlands Public Prosecution Service, reportedly said in a press statement.
Jah Cure secures defense counsel
The Reggae crooner secured defense counsel Jan-Hein Kuijpers who appeared in court on his behalf but was unsuccessful in being granted bail as the investigation was not complete.
Press Officer with the Netherlands Public Prosecution Service Franklin Wattimena said the preparation for trial was almost done.
“The suspect and his lawyer were present in the Amsterdam court. The trial, the substantive hearing, will take place on March 8 at 14.00 hours. The court has decided that the suspect will continue to remain in custody until March 8. The investigation into the stabbing by the suspect is in the final phase,” Wattimena was quoted as saying by the Jamaica Observer.
March 8 trial begins
The prosecution argued that the stabbing incident was over 5000 euros owed for his performance at Melkweg. Among the damaging evidence were text messages Cure sent to Blake.
“I’m going to jail for you pussyhole,” one of the texts read. “The last time you will live to diss man thing”, another said.
“‘This is the n***** I have to kill’ a witness also testified that Cure said after the stabbing.
However, what worked in Cure’s favor was that the witness, when cross-examined, said he did not see Cure stabbing the promoter but rather, he said the singer used his hand in a “stabbing motion,” followed by the promoter grabbing his stomach and then being taken to hospital.
In closing arguments, the prosecution moved for eight years in jail and credit for time served, citing the behavior of Jah Cure has affected the psyche of the people of the country due to the violent nature of the offense.
“These are grave crimes that not only have consequences for the personal integrity of the victim but also severely shaken the legal order. Because the victim is stabbed in broad daylight and in the busy city center of Amsterdam. It evokes feelings of unsafety among the general public”, the prosecutor said of the crime and the country which is practically free of any crime.
Jah Cure did not receive a jury trial but was instead tried by a panel of three judges due to the Dutch legal system that differs from Jamaica.
The final day for the trial was March 22, when a guilty verdict for attempted manslaughter was given. Jah Cure was sentenced to six years in a Netherlands prison for the conviction, which means he will be released in October 2027 after being credited for time already served.
Jah Cure’s history of legal troubles
Jah Cure, whose real name is Siccaturie Alcock, has previously spent eight years in jail for raping and robbing a woman at gunpoint in 1998. He was initially sentenced to 13 years but was released early due to good behavior.
While behind bars, he came to prominence for his songs “Longing For” and “Love Is” released in 2005 and “True Reflection (Prison Walls)” released in 2007. Despite the rape conviction, Jah Cure was supported by his fans, and his popularity soared with the 2015 album, The Cure, saw him topping the Billboard Reggae Charts and getting a nomination for Best Reggae Album at the Grammy’s in 2015.
The reggae crooner’s career has been plagued by legal problems since returning from jail.
He was arrested in the Bahamas in 2016 following a hotel brawl that saw him being knocked out by an unidentified person, and he was arrested and charged for fighting, but the matter was later dropped, with him saying he was only parting a fight but not actively participating.
He was also arrested the year prior in 2015 in Trinidad for allegedly taking money to perform but failing to show up. Before his Netherlands arrest, the singer was accused by two American women in 2020 of locking up and beating them for refusing to have sex with him.
Jah Cure can be heard in the leaked voice notes shared by the women threatening to beat them. The Jamaican singer had responded to the voice notes claiming that the women were groupies trying to gain clout off of his name. The matter was not reported to the police.