Grammy-nominated rapper 21 Savage was arrested in Atlanta early Sunday by US Immigration and Customs Enforcement, according to ICE spokesperson Bryan Cox. The agency says he is illegally present in the United States. Cox, however, said Abraham-Joseph is an “unlawfully present United Kingdom national” who came to the U.S. on a visa in July 2005. His visa expired a year later, Cox said.
He was also convicted of felony drug charges in 2014 in Fulton County, ICE said.
Abraham-Joseph has been placed in “removal proceedings before the federal immigration courts,” Cox said.
Social media reacts with shock, humor after reports of 21 Savage’s British roots, ICE arrest
An ICE official told the AJC that when Abraham-Joseph was arrested in 2014, ICE was not aware of his immigration status. They only learned later that he is allegedly from the U.K.
The official said the early-morning arrest stemmed from a traffic stop in DeKalb County during which three other people who were with him were arrested by DeKalb police.
The AJC has reached out to DeKalb police for information on that incident.
He performed in Atlanta as recently as Thursday in the Super Bowl Music Fest at State Farm Arena.
He jumped into the rap game with his debut mixtape “The Slaughter Tape” in 2015. His most recent album, “I Am > I Was,” hit No. 1 on the Billboard 200 album chart.