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Court releases coke suspect crooner

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Court releases coke suspect crooner
18:06 CET+01:00
A court in Stockholm has decided not to remand Syrian-Lebanese singing star George Wassouf in custody, but police said the artist remained under suspicion for possession of drugs.

"The Stockholm district court has released him, but the suspicions against him remain and we will decide tomorrow (Wednesday) whether or not to appeal the ruling," Stockholm police investigator Manne Jönsson told AFP.

Wassouf was arrested on Saturday in a police raid at a Stockholm hotel just hours before he was due to perform a concert. The singer is accused of being in possession "of a few grammes" of cocaine, prosecutor Rolf Hillegren told AFP on Monday.

Jönsson confirmed that the drug in question was cocaine, but would not reveal the quantity that Wassouf, who has pleaded his innocence, was suspected of possessing.

According to news reports, he had about 30 grammes of cocaine on him when he was arrested.

The Expressen daily reported on its website Tuesday that the Syrian ambassador in Stockholm had been present at the trial and had called for the star to be released.

He reportedly said he could guarantee that Wassouf would return to Sweden if the case goes to trial.

Wassouf, who moved to Lebanon as a child, is a star in the Arab world with more than 30 albums to his name.

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