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ASAP Rocky returns to Sweden for live gig

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ASAP Rocky returns to Sweden for live gig
ASAP Rocky at a gig in New York last year. Photo: Charles Sykes/Invision/AP
13:27 CET+01:00
US rapper ASAP Rocky is set to play a gig in Sweden in December – less than four months after a Swedish court found him guilty of assaulting a man in Stockholm.

"After tremendous support from the Swedish fans, he returns to Stockholm for a long-awaited gig for all his supporters," said the organizer, LiveNation, in a statement on Friday.

The rapper will play the Ericsson Globe in Stockholm on December 11th. The artist line-up includes Swedish artists, who are yet to be announced, read the statement. Part of the proceeds will go to the Swedish Network of Refugee Support Groups (FARR), a non-profit organization working to strengthen the right of asylum.

Tickets will be released via LiveNation on November 12th.

ASAP Rocky, whose real name is Rakim Mayers, grabbed international headlines earlier this year after he and two members of his entourage were arrested for assaulting a man after a gig in Stockholm.

The trio claimed they had acted in self-defence, but a district court found them guilty of assault, handing them a suspended sentence and ordering them to pay 12,000 kronor in damages to the victim. 

Due to the time the men had already spent in detention, the court did not impose a prison sentence.

Considered a "flight risk", the 31-year-old rapper was held in custody for a month while the case was investigated and throughout his trial – sparking debate about Sweden's long detention times.

He was released after the close of proceedings on August 2nd, before the verdict and sentence were handed out on August 14th, and immediately returned to the United States. But his lawyer, Slobodan Jovicic, told concerned fans when asked if he would ever come back to Sweden: "I know he'll be back. 100 percent."

By that point, fans, fellow artists and even Donald Trump had got involved to call for his release – with the US president's intervention drawing complaints from Swedish politicians.

US special presidential envoy for hostage affairs Robert C O'Brien, who attended the trial, told reporters: "The president felt they shouldn't have been detained, they were stalked."

An online petition called #JusticeForRocky garnered more than 640,000 signatures.

Mayers conceded he threw the man to the ground and "kicked his arm", but denied the prosecution's claim that a bottle was used and insisted he only acted after the accuser and his friend began attacking his bodyguard.

The 19-year-old plaintiff, a Swedish resident born in Afghanistan, alleged he was attacked by the three men when he followed them to ask about a headphone set broken in an earlier scuffle with the rapper's bodyguard.

 
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