Danny Benjamin, equipment manager for the Antigua Barbuda Football Association (ABFA), who is facing drug charges in Jamaica, has claimed that he and Derrick “Pretty Boy” Edwards are innocent of the crimes they are accused of committing.
Benjamin, 48, is alleging that a team member committed the “serious crime” and he is, therefore, calling on the local association to do its own investigation into the matter to determine the truth.
He spoke on the Good Morning Jo Jo show yesterday for the first time, days after he was granted bail in a Jamaican court and placed under house arrest.
“The people of Antigua need to know the truth and they will know it because we are not going to leave any stones unturned. This is
very serious and I am not going to let my name go down like that,” Benjamin declared.
Both Benjamin and Edwards were arrested at the Norman Manley International Airport on March 26 after their luggage was searched and found to contain marijuana. The men were returning home with the national team after its 1-1 draw with Jamaica at
Sabina Park on the previous day.
They were charged with possession of marijuana, taking steps to export marijuana, and dealing in marijuana. Benjamin was granted bail on April 10, while Edwards was released on bail the previous week.
According to a report in the Jamaica Gleaner, the two football officials were ordered to serve the house arrest at the Jamaica National Football Team’s residence at Kingston 8.
The report also indicated that a stop order was placed on them at all ports, should they try to leave the island and they were ordered to surrender all travel documents to the police.
Speaking about the ordeal, an emotional Benjamin said he spent 18 days in
jail and this was one of the worst experiences of his lifetime.
Benjamin, who has a health condition, said he was unable to eat properly and had difficulty accessing his medication.
“No human should go through that kind of condition, to be locked up for 24 hours a day, it was very difficult,” Benjamin said before he broke down in tears.
He later added: “Thank God for seeing me through, because with him nothing is impossible.”
Benjamin also said the outcome of this incident will determine whether he will ever travel again with others to represent the country.
The equipment manager is also uncertain about the status of his employment with the Antigua Public Utilities Authority (APUA), where he has been employed for the past 24 years.