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Saturday, 3 August 2019

Rapper A$AP Rocky freed from Swedish jail after U.S. hostage envoy warns of 'negative consequences'

Rapper Rakim Mayers, who goes by the stage name A$AP Rocky, was freed from Swedish jail and allowed to return to the United States on Friday, apparently aided by some Twitter pressure from President Donald Trump and a strongly-worded letter by a U.S. hostage affairs envoy, according to CNN.
Mayers was facing assault charges in Sweden stemming from an altercation in June, during which he claims he acted in self-defense and that the alleged victim had confronted and harassed his group more than once before violence broke out. Here is some footage of the altercation (there is some profanity in the video):
President Donald Trump, reportedly at the urging of Kim Kardashian, had attempted to advocate for Mayers' release via Twitter, even offering to vouch for his bail, but the Swedish government initially rejected the notion that he would be released in response to the tweets.


CNN reported Friday that Robert C. O'Brien, U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs, wrote a letter to to Swedish prosecutors a few days before Mayers' release, requesting the "immediate humanitarian release" of Mayers and two other men who were being detained.
"...the government of the United States of America wants to resolve this case as soon as possible to avoid potentially negative consequences to the U.S.-Swedish bilateral relationship," the letter read.
Mayers' trial ended Friday and he was released, with a final judgement of his guilt or innocence to be rendered sometime this month. President Trump celebrated Mayers' release on Twitter.
"A$AP Rocky released from prison and on his way home to the United States from Sweden," Trump wrote. "It was a Rocky Week, get home ASAP A$AP!"

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