US Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents took rapper Sha Yaa Bin Abraham-Joseph, better known as 21 Savage, into custody early Sunday morning in Atlanta, US, after a “targeted operation with federal and local law enforcement partners”.
Though he is often touted as a local Atlanta rapper, ICE officials say he is actually “a United Kingdom national” and has overstayed his visa.
“Mr Abraham-Joseph initially entered the US legally in July 2005, but subsequently failed to depart under the terms of his nonimmigrant visa and he became unlawfully present in the US when his visa expired in July 2006,” ICE spokesman Bryan Cox said in a statement.
“In addition to being in violation of federal immigration law, Mr Abraham-Joseph was convicted on felony drug charges in October 2014 in Fulton County, Georgia,” the statement added.
The rapper has been placed in “removal proceedings before the federal immigration courts,” Cox said. “ICE will now await the outcome of his case before a federal immigration judge to determine future actions.”
Dina LaPolt, the rapper’s lawyer, said in a statement that she is trying to get him released and “clear up any misunderstandings”.
Image: AMY HARRIS/AP