21 Savage turned himself into authorities Thursday after he was charged with drug and weapons possession stemming from his 2019 arrest by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents in Atlanta.
A warrant for the rapper, born She’yaa Bin Abraham-Joseph, was previously issued on September 7th; 21 Savage turned himself in to local authorities on Thursday night and was bonded out soon after, according to the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office.
Abraham-Joseph was charged with one count of possession of a schedule II controlled substance and one count of possession of a gun related to the February 2019 incident, where the rapper was arrested during what ICE called a “targeted operation.” According to the warrant, a bottle thrown out of the vehicle 21 Savage was traveling in at the time of the arrest later tested positive for codeine. A handgun was also found inside the car, TMZ reports.
At the time, ICE claimed that Abraham-Joseph was a United Kingdom national and that came to the U.S. as a teenager on a one-year visa in July 2005; Abraham-Joseph’s legal team later stated that the rapper came to America from the U.K. at the age of seven and “lost his legal status” through no fault of his own.
ICE previously sought an aggravated felony charge against 21 Savage — who spent nine days in “one of the worst immigration detention centers in the U.S.” following his arrest — as a means to deport him, but that charge was later dropped. However, the new charges against 21 Savage come just weeks before the rapper’s next immigration status hearing, set for November 1st, Buzzfeed reported.
“The warrant appears to have been sought at the behest of ICE, as the warrant was issued in the eve of an Immigration Court hearing in Mr. Joseph’s deportation proceeding, and is based upon events that transpired on the evening that ICE arrested Mr. Joseph over two and one half years ago,” 21 Savage’s lawyer Charles Kuck said in a statement. “There can be no doubt that ICE is seeking to cover its own errors in detaining Mr. Joseph by pushing trumped-up charges against him and seeks to stop him from obtaining lawful permanent residence in the United States.”
21 Savage is currently scheduled to perform Sunday night at New York’s Governors Ball, with a tour with J. Cole to follow.
“We are grateful for the efforts of the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office for quickly processing and releasing Mr. Joseph,” Kuck added. “He will continue to fight for his right to seek permanent residence in the United States through the immigration court. We look forward to the day when ICE will play fairly with all those who seek justice within our immigration system.”