Rapper Slick Rick facing deportation once again
Forthy-one year old british-born rapper Ricky Walters “Slick Rick”, who served five years in prison for attempted murder during the 1990s, is fighting the U.S. government’s efforts to have him deported again, according to his legal representatives.
For the past few years, Slick Rick has been twice allowed by the courts to stay in the U.S. after the Immigration and Naturalization Service ordered him deported. However, sources say that according to his legal team, the Department of Homeland Security has renewed Rick’s case and is attempting to move it to Florida’s 11th Circuit Court in Miami, where he was bizarrely arrested in 2002 for “deporting himself” and “illegally re-entering the country” after performing on a Caribbean cruise ship.
In 2003, an immigration judge permitted Rick to stay in the U.S. due to his “outstanding equities.” At the time, the rapper was facing deportation because of the attempted murder conviction. The longtime New York resident, who came to America when he was 11, was recently stripped of his permanent resident status and his right to leave the country, according to his representatives stated Billboard.com.
“The bottom line is, this is something that happened a decade and six years ago and that’s 16 years ago,” Rick told Billboard.com. “We as Americans need people, not machinery, (to) weed this out so we don’t look insensible in front of the international and intellectual world.”
To help with his cause, Rick has called on the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network, which is co-chaired by Russell Simmons and Dr. Benjamin Chavis. In support of the rapper, the organization will hold a press conference Tuesday in front of the Federal Court Building in New York.
“It can’t hurt to let everybody know what’s going on,” said Rick, whose wife, children and parents are all American citizens. “They’re just trying to help people to see certain defects in our judicial system. It’s not really to blame anybody. It’s really to just make sure that everything runs smooth. I have a lot of confidence in America. I just assume that once the issue is brought before the public, everybody will be on the same page. What’s the sense of rehabilitation if we’re going to take something that happened almost two decades ago and punish people? It doesn’t make sense.”
Since then Slick Rick has be participating in tribute shows and events as well as working with music mogul Wendy Day founder of Rap Coalition.