Jay-Z has hired an all-star lawyer to help the Atalanta-based rapper 21 Savage fight deportation to the UK.
Earlier this week news broke that the Atalanta-based rapper 21 Savage had lived in the U.K. until around the age of 7, but has overstayed his one-year visa ever since.
Now, in an extraordinary and bizarre story, the rapper finds himself in a messy battle with immigration officials after overstaying his American visa by more than a decade.
While many in the U.K. were quick to make light of the news and welcome there fellow Brit with open arms, 21 Savage, whose real name is She'yaa Bin Abraham-Joseph, has received strong backing from his counterparts in America, so much so that Jay-Z has enlisted the help of one the best lawyers in the country.
As TMZ reports, Jay described the situation as a "travesty" and is thought to have told the entertainment rag,
"In addition to being a successful recording artist, 21 deserves to be reunited with his children immediately."
The lawyer now fronting the case is Alex Spiro, whose previous clients have included Jay-Z, Mick Jagger, and Philip Seymour Hoffman among others.
"We are not going to stop until he is released, bonded out or in front of a judge," Spiro said.
"What we have here is someone who overstayed their visa with an application pending for 4 years - not a convicted criminal that needs to be detained and removed but, by all accounts a wonderful person, father, and entertainer who has a marijuana offense which was vacated and sealed."
In a statement released by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE), it described 21 Savage as a person 'unlawfully present in the US' and a 'United Kingdom national'.
21 Savage, whose real name is Abraham-Joseph, has since made a statement of his own, confirming that he is indeed from Britain but that 'incorrect information' is in the ICE statement.
In the hitmaker's statement, the rapper revealed that he didn't realize he had overstayed his visa until 2017 when he began the process of applying for a new one.
"Mr. Abraham-Joseph has three U.S. Citizen children, a lawful permanent resident mother and four siblings that are either US Citizens or lawful permanent residents. He has exceptionally strong ties in the United States, having lived here since he was in the first grade.
"Because of his length of residence in the United States and his immediate relatives, Mr. Abraham-Joseph is eligible to seek Cancellation of Removal from an Immigration Judge."
"Mr. Abraham-Joseph was placed into deportation proceedings AFTER his arrest, he was not in deportation proceedings prior to this detention by ICE. DHS has known his address since the filing of a U visa application in 2017.
"He has never hidden from DHS or any of its agencies. Mr. Abraham-Joseph is not subject to mandatory detention under federal law and is eligible for bond. By statute, bond should be granted by ICE when there is no flight risk or a danger to the community.
"We are unaware of why ICE apparently targeted Mr. Abraham-Joseph, but we will do everything possible to legally seek his release and pursue his available relief in immigration court."
Georgia Congressman Hank Johnson has also been doing his bit to help the rapper stay in the country, revealing that he has sent a letter to the immigration judge praising Abraham-Joseph's community spirit and his role in aiding the 'betterment of our youth'.