21 Savage's Lawyer Accuses ICE Of 'Intimidating' Rapper To Leave The U.S.
New details have surfaced regarding 21 Savage being arrested by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in Atlanta. As previously reported, 21 was arrested on Sunday (February 3rd) and is facing deportation following ICE’s claims that he is an "unlawfully present United Kingdom national," who came to the U.S. on a visa in July 2005. 21’s visa expired a year later and he has reportedly been living illegally in the U.S. ever since.
The Daily Mail has since uncovered the rapper’s birth certificate, which allegedly proves that he was born to British parents in London. The rapper also reportedly lived there for 12 years until being taken to Atlanta by his mother.
According to Rap-Up, 21’s U.K. birth certificate shows that he was born Shéyaa bin Abraham on October 22, 1992 at Newham Hospital, in east London. It also indicates that his parents Heather Joseph and Kevin Emmons, are also British.
On Monday (February 4th), Charles H. Kuck, the rapper's Atlanta-based immigration attorney questioned why ICE waited until now to act on his client’s immigration status. According to USA Today, Kuck said in a statement, "Mr. Abraham-Joseph has never hid his immigration status from the U.S. government. The Department of Homeland Security has known his address and his history since his filing for the U-Visa in 2017, yet they took no action against him until this past weekend."
Kuck added that not only is 21 not currently charged with any crime, but he "has a pending U-Visa application (as the victim of crime) on file with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services" and "has U.S. citizen children that he supports and is eligible for relief from deportation."
Kuck also said, "The continued detention of Mr. Abraham-Joseph serves no other purpose than to unnecessarily punish him and try to intimidate him into giving up his right to fight to remain in the United States. Mr. Abraham-Joseph’s is clearly not a danger to the community, and in fact, his contributions to local communities and schools that he grew up in are examples of the type of immigrant we want in America. We and he will fight for his release, for his family, and his right to remain in our country. No one would expect less from him."
The rapper also has twin sisters in London, dance choreographers Kyra and Jayda. Jayda took to social media to tweet support for her brother. She wrote, "But Shaayaa moved to America when he was mad young, so he basically is American, he grew up there. I’m bare confused as to how they’re trying to deport him though… He’s been comfortable this whole time, even when he was gangbanging and sh*t. This smells fishy."
A video has also surfaced of 21’s mother, where she was interviewed at a back-to-school event in London. The rapper handed out free books, shoes and clothes. His mother said in a British accent, "It’s every mother’s dream to see their son grow up to be such a thoughtful, loving boy. It’s great that he is helping so many people because we were there once ourselves."
PETITION LAUNCHED TO FIGHT 21 SAVAGE’S DEPORTATION
According to Complex, Black Lives Matter has started a petition to fight 21 Savage’s deportation. The #Free21Savage petition was created by Black Lives Matter co-founder, Patrisse Khan-Cullors, and appears on the Campaigns for Change website.
The petition reads, "The circumstances of Mr. Abraham-Joseph's detention stand as a testament to the consistent and historically under-reported harassment and targeting of Black immigrants. The US' violent history of criminalizing Blackness intersects with its deadly legacy of detaining and deporting Black and Brown immigrants. This needs to stop today!"
The petition adds, "There are around 4.2 Million Black immigrants in the U.S. - 619,000 are undocumented. Mr. Abraham-Joseph has been in the United States since he was a young child. Atlanta is his home."