21 Savage's attempt to do things by the book appears to have backfired.
In all the hubbub surrounding 21 Savage's immigration status, many reports indicated that the rapper was originally brought into custody by the Dekalb County Police, and subsequently handed over to ICE officials. Now, it has been reported that ICE was already making moves to apprehend Savage, with TMZ claiming they were already on the scene when he was pulled over. To make matters even more complicated, 21's lawyer has claimed ICE was well aware of 21's immigration status, as the rapper has originally filed for a U-Visa in 2017.
Noam Galai/Getty Images
21's lawyer, Charles H. Kuck, has since expressed displeasure with the way ICE handled the situation. Apparently, ICE based 21's arrest onformer felony drug charge, which the rapper landed back in 2014. The charge was later expunged, ICE is not required to honor the expungement process; essentially, if they want to give someone the boot, they can. In an ironic twist of fate, 21's attempt to do things by the books may have ultimately triggered ICE's involvement. Through that lens, the situation feels like a double-edged sword. Every application comes with a thorough background check, which may very well have revealed his original U.K. roots and "illegal" U.S. citizenship status.
It is speculated that 21 attempted to make use of a rule, in which "illegal" citizens can file for a U-Visa if they have a "qualifying U.S. relative" in the country. As 21 has three children born on U.S. soil, it would make him eligible - at least in theory. The former felony appears to have muddied the waters where ICE is concerned, and now, they seem more than willing to throw the book at Savage.
All things considered, it's a damn shame to see this transpire the way it has. 21 Savage has emerged as one of the game's most exciting young rappers, and has already established roots in Atlanta. Hopefully, growing support from a #Free21Savage petition can play a role in highlighting his importance to the game; should you be interested in making a difference, read more about that here. In the meantime, it's still Free Savage, and of course, we can't forget about Young Nudy.