President Trump says he is trying to help free rapper ASAP Rocky, who’s been jailed in Sweden since the beginning of the month without being charged.
“We are one,” he told pool reporters in D.C. on Friday, noting that his African American friends had called on him to help. The president said First Lady Melania Trump initially brought the matter to his attention via a news article.
“We hope to get him home soon,” Trump said. And, of course, he tweeted on the topic as well, saying he’d spoken to Kanye West about the situation.
“I will be calling the very talented Prime Minister of Sweden to see what we can do about helping A$AP Rocky. So many people would like to see this quickly resolved!” POTUS tweeted.
Kim Kardashian West, who has been active recently in criminal justice reform, reached out this week to Trump on Rocky’s behalf via presidential advisor Jared Kushner. A host of celebrities and fans have also signed a petition calling for the release of the artist, whose real name is Rakim Mayers.
The 30-year-old rapper and two of his friends were arrested early July 3 on suspicion of assault after coming in voluntarily to answer police questions about a June 30 street fight that was captured on several different videos.
In the first video to go public, Rocky could be seen hurling a man across the street. However, in subsequent videos, the two men on the other side of the disagreement appear to be the aggressors. A defense attorney has said Rocky’s crew was acting in self-defense.
Swedish authorities said Friday in a statement that the prosecutor has requested that the rapper and his friends remain in custody through July 25 while the investigation proceeds. In Sweden, prosecutors have three days after an arrest to press charges, but a two-week extension for investigation was granted by a judge in this case.
“We have worked intensively with the investigation and need more time, until Thursday next week, in order to complete the preliminary investigation. As long as the preliminary investigation is ongoing, I cannot give any further comments,” prosecutor Daniel Suneson, who has taken over the investigation, said in a statement.
One of the injured parties is being investigated as well, in parallel with the U.S. citizens, authorities said. The suspected crimes are abuse, assault and attempted assault.
ASAP Rocky was in Stockholm to appear at the two-day Smash festival of hip-hop July 2. He has had to cancel a number of concerts since being jailed.