21 Savage Released From ICE Detainment On Bond
By Peyton Blakemore
February 12, 2019
21 Savage has been released from ICE custody.
After nearly ten days of being held in what many have called "one of the worst immigration detention centers in the U.S.," the 26-year-old rapper was released on bond Tuesday (February 12), pending a deportation hearing, TMZ reports.
Following his release, 21's lawyers, Charles H. Kuck, Dina LaPolt and Alex Spiro released a statement, per Pitchfork, detailing the nine-day battle for his freedom. "For the past 9 long days, we, on behalf of She’yaa Bin Abraham-Joseph, known to the world as 21 Savage, have been speaking with ICE to both clarify his actual legal standing, his eligibility for bond, and provide evidence of his extraordinary contributions to his community and society," the statement began. "In the last 24 hours, in the wake of the Grammy Awards at which he was scheduled to attend and perform, we received notice that She’yaa was granted an expedited hearing. Today, 21 Savage was granted a release on bond. He won his freedom. 21 Savage asked us to send a special message to his fans and supporters—he says that while he wasn’t present at the Grammy Awards, he was there in spirit and is grateful for the support from around the world and is more than ever, ready to be with his loved ones and continue making music that brings people together. He will not forget this ordeal or any of the other fathers, sons, family members, and faceless people, he was locked up with or that remain unjustly incarcerated across the country. And he asks for your hearts and minds to be with them."
As previously reported, the father-of-three, whose legal name is She'yaa Bin Abraham-Joseph, was arrested by ICE on Super Bowl Sunday (February 3) for allegedly staying in the U.S. illegally. Despite being in the process of attempting to get a U-Visa, ICE claimed that the U.K. born rapper "is unlawfully present in the U.S." However, 21's legal team has maintained that he is a "dreamer," whose "legal status expired at no fault of his own." Given that 21 was neither a flight risk, nor a danger to the community, it remains unclear why he was detained for nearly ten days.
Many in the hip-hop community rallied around 21 following his arrest. There was also an online petition, which garnered over 450,000 signatures, started by the co-founder of Black Lives Matter, Patrisse Cullors, in an effort to free 21 and stop his possible deportation. Jay Z even hired attorney Alex Shapiro to assist with 21's legal battle with ICE. And most recently, Kendrick Lamar, Post Malone, SZA, Mike Tyson, T.I., J.Cole and over a dozen other celebrities, musicians and activists joined together for a Mic video that called for 21 to be released from ICE custody while also highlighting "stories of other undocumented immigrants who have been either detained or deported by ICE and other government agencies while going about their everyday lives."
Photo: Getty Images