21 Savage has been released from ICE custody on bond. The rapper, whose real name is She’yaa Bin Abraham-Joseph, was born in the UK and has reportedly been living in the US for years on an expired visa. His lawyers say that he came to the US as a child and his visa expired “through no fault of his own”, and that his immigration status was known to officials.
His release came days after he was originally slated to perform at the Grammys with Post Malone. Following his release, his lawyers released a statement: “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.”
21 Savage was up for two Grammy awards on Sunday thanks to his feature on Post Malone’s “Rockstar”, but was still in custody during the ceremony. His name wasn’t mentioned much during the night except for by Childish Gambino’s producer Ludwig Goransson while accepting their award for Record of the Year with “This is America”, for which 21 Savage performed some ad-libs.
ICE claimed they arrested 21 Savage because he had been convicted of a felony drug charge in Georgia in 2014, and undocumented felons can be deported. The rapper’s lawyers responded that the arrest was based on “incorrect information about prior criminal charges”. They added that in 2017, the rapper applied for a U-Visa, a non-immigrant visa for victims of crimes, because he was shot six times when he was 21. He has reportedly been living in Atlanta since 2005, having arrived in the US at the age of seven.