New York lawmaker calls for A$AP Rocky to be released from Swedish prison

/ CBS/AP

Following an outcry from celebrities and a Change.org petition with 500,000 signatures, Democratic Rep. Adriano Espaillat of Nw York is pushing for the release of A$AP Rocky, who has been behind bars in Sweden while police investigate a fight involving the rapper.

"I will continue fighting until A$AP Rocky is released from Swedish prison and brought back. Everyone deserves to be treated equally and A$AP Rocky's rights continue to be violated. It is not a fair process," the New York congressman said in a statement. "Currently, I'm speaking with the State Department and the U.S. Embassy in Sweden and ask that everyone continues showing their support to help us in this process of getting justice for Rocky."

The Harlem-born rapper was arrested earlier this month in connection with an alleged assault along with three other people. A Swedish court ordered him to be held for two weeks as police investigated the June 30 fight.

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The 30-year-old was allegedly involved in a fight before appearing at a music festival in Sweden. A$AP Rocky posted short video clips, purportedly showing the incident that led to his arrest, and a statement proclaiming his innocence.

He claimed on Instagram that one of the men hit his bodyguard with a pair of headphones. The clips show little physical interaction between the young men, as A$AP Rocky and an associate repeatedly tell the other men to walk away and stop following them.

Diddy, Justin Bieber, Shawn Mendes, Jada Pinkett Smith, Kris Jenner, Nicki Minaj, Post Malone and 2 Chainz are some of the celebrities who have publicly expressed support for him. The platinum-selling, Grammy-nominated artist has collaborated with Kendrick Lamar, Cardi B, Drake and Selena Gomez.

Rapper Tyga said he would not perform a scheduled show Sunday in Sweden as a result of A$AP Rocky's arrest.

"I have decided to cancel my show in Sweden this Sunday July 14. I will not be performing. #FREEASAPROCKY," he tweeted Thursday.

Tyler, the Creator tweeted: "no more sweden for me, ever." Jaden Smith replied to Tyler's tweet with: "Me Either #FreeFlackoNow."

The Change.org petition supporting Rocky has more than 560,000 signatures.

First published on July 12, 2019 / 5:37 PM

© 2019 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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