Author: JAMES BICKERTON
CONTROVERSIAL rapper 21 Savage has been arrested by US immigration control officers over allegations he is actually British, and has been in the US illegally since July 2006.
The rapper, who’s real name is Shayaabin Abraham-Joseph, entered the US legally in July 2005. However according to US authorities he failed to leave the country a year later, as his non-immigration visa required. Mr Abraham-Joseph was arrested by officers from the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE).
The rapper had previously spoken about growing up in Atlanta, Georgia, the city with which he is most associated.
In a statement ICE commented: “Mr Abraham-Joseph is presently in ICE custody in Georgia and has been placed into removal proceedings before the federal immigration courts.
“ICE will now await the outcome of his case before a federal immigration judge to determine future actions.”
Mr Abraham-Joseph released his first solo album, ‘Issa Album’, in 2017 which included the hit song ‘Bank Account’.
In December 2018 his second album, ‘I Am > I Was’, became available.
The musician played heavily on his Atlanta roots in his music and branding.
He claimed the ’21’ in his stage name refers to a street gang from the city, which he repeatedly referenced in his music.
During a 2012 Fader magazine interview, Mr Abraham-Jospeh said he first saw a gun aged eight, though he didn’t say where this took place.
Speaking to CNN an ICE source asserted: “His whole public persona is false”.
Mr Abraham-Joseph was forced to apologise last December after one of his songs contained a reference to “Jewish money”.
NBA legend LeBron James, who had shared the lyrics via his Instagram account, also issued an apology.
An lawyer for the rapper said: “We are working diligently to get Mr. Abraham-Joseph out of detention while we work with the authorities to clear up any misunderstandings”.
“Mr. Abraham-Joseph is a role model to the young people in this country, especially in Atlanta, Georgia, and is actively working in the community leading programs to help underprivileged youths in financial literacy.”