Over a year after being detained by ICE over his expired visa, 21 Savage was charged with possession of a controlled substance and possession of a firearm. Those charges are now affecting his fight for legal immigration status, according to his lawyer Charles Kuck. TMZ reports Kuck says that due to the criminal charges, Savage’s immigration case has been put on pause until the charges can be resolved.
The charges stem from the rapper’s initial arrest in February of 2019, when federal agents and police say they found a handgun in his car after he threw an empty bottle of codeine out of the vehicle. However, charges weren’t filed against him until September of 2021 — which Kuck believes was prompted by an ICE request after the rapper’s plight threw unwanted attention on the organization. ICE was already under scrutiny for its handling of the ongoing border crisis, and the negative publicity from arresting the “Bank Account” rapper only brought harsher criticism.
The ICE case was initially prompted by felony drug charges against the rapper which, by the time he was arrested had already been vacated. Meanwhile, Savage, who is originally from the UK and had been living in the US on an expired visa since he was 13 without knowing it, was already looking to correct his visa status at the time he was arrested, which his lawyers believe was the real reason ICE targeted him. Since his immigration case is ongoing, he cannot leave the country, although he is allowed to travel domestically for shows.