A$AP Rocky’s lawyer refutes reports of “inhumane conditions” in rapper’s detention

Reports swirled that the rapper, held in a Swedish prison and facing an assault charge, was being targeted by authorities and held in filthy conditions.

July 11, 2019
A$AP Rocky’s lawyer refutes reports of “inhumane conditions” in rapper’s detention A$AP Rocky at Rihanna's 4th Annual Diamond Ball. September 13, 2018.   Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Diamond Ball

On July 3, A$AP Rocky was arrested in Stockholm after footage emerged of the rapper engaged in a street brawl. Prosecutors were successful in asking a court to hold the rapper for two weeks in prison as they investigate the incident and consider assault charges. A July 9 report in TMZ alleged that Rocky was being held in "inhumane conditions" in the Swedish jail, but on Thursday, Rocky's lawyer Henrik Olsson Lilja pushed back on TMZ's allegations in a statement to Swedish media outlet SVT Nyheter.

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The original article is in Swedish. Translated through Google, Olsson Lilja's statement says that Rocky was "treated properly" by Swedish jail authorities. TMZ's report cited a US Embassy official who claimed the jail was "like walking into a toilet" — Rocky's lawyer clarifies that while Rocky did smell urine in his holding cell when he was initially arrested, there are no such conditions in his current detention. Olsson Lilja also says that Rocky "tries to eat to the best of his ability" despite TMZ's initial report that the jail's food is "inedible."

The translated statement is more ambiguous on the allegation that Rocky was denied access to an official with a US Consulate, a purported violation of the Vienna Convention for Consular Relations. "[Rocky] was to receive a visit from American staff at an early stage when he was arrested, but understood that staff from the embassy were not allowed to enter. At a later date... he has been visited. If this is a violation of the Vienna Convention, he cannot judge."

Read the statement in full below:

"He has never talked to TMZ or any third party regarding the circumstances when he was arrested, ie when he was in the prison. He was then treated and treated properly. However, he has experienced the conditions in the arrest as very simple and has experienced that it smells urine in the cell in the arrest. However, not in detention. The conditions in the arrest cell can in that respect be criticized. "

[...]

"He has lacked appetite at the beginning when he was arrested but tries to eat to the best of his ability. He was to receive a visit from American staff at an early stage when he was arrested, but understood that staff from the embassy were not allowed to enter. At a later date, some day later, however, he has been visited. If this is a violation of the Vienna Convention, he cannot judge. He does not know any other information in the TMZ article. "

Calls for Rocky's release continue to grow. Over 500,000 people have signed a Change.org petition shared by artists like Post Malone, Miguel, and more. Speaking with Complex, Congressman Adriano Espaillat confirmed that he was taking the banner for a political push to bring the rapper back to the United States.

The FADER has reached out to A$AP Rocky's representative for comment.

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A$AP Rocky’s lawyer refutes reports of “inhumane conditions” in rapper’s detention