“I AM OF COURSE DISAPPOINTED BY TODAY’S VERDICT," Rocky, born Rakim Mayers, said on Instagram. "I WANT TO SAY THANKS AGAIN TO ALL OF MY FANS, FRIENDS, AND EVERYONE WHO SHOWED ME LOVE DURING THIS DIFFICULT TIME. IMMA KEEP MOVING FORWARD. THANK YOU TO MY TEAM, MY MANAGEMENT, ATTORNEYS, LABEL AND EVERYONE WHO ADVOCATED FOR JUSTICE. 🙏🏿”
Rocky and his two bodyguards, who spent nearly a month behind bars before being released Aug. 2, were given "conditional sentences" for their assault convictions. That means they don't have to serve prison time unless they commit a similar offense in Sweden again.
The rapper's Swedish lawyer, Slobodan Jovicic, told reporters he had hoped for a "complete acquittal."
The defendants have also been ordered to pay a total of 12,500 kronor ($1,310) in compensation to the victim.
The case drew the attention of American celebrities and Rocky's fellow recording artists, including Sean "Diddy" Combs and Justin Bieber. A social media campaign, #JusticeForRocky, has been pressing for his release.
The issue also caused a minor diplomatic spat between the U.S. and Sweden.
President Trump intervened on behalf of the rapper while he was jailed, and called Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven with an offer to personally guarantee Rocky's bail, but the Swedish leader said he couldn't interfere in a legal case. Trump later cheered the release of Rocky and his bodyguards and dispatched Ambassador Robert O. Brien, the U.S. special presidential envoy for hostage affairs, to Sweden to monitor the court proceedings.
During the trial, prosecutors played video footage that showed the rapper throwing a young man to the ground.
Presiding judge Per Lennerbrant said that “the evidence in the case has been complex.”
The victim, 19-year-old Mustafa Jafari, was struck in the back of the head with a bottle but “it could not be established by whom,” the judge said, adding that “this has affected the assessment of the seriousness of the crime.”
Rocky, 30, had pleaded self-defense and said the fight happened after he tried to avoid a confrontation with two men he claimed had persisted in following his entourage. One of them, identified as Jafari, picked a fight with one of the bodyguards. The rapper said that Jafari and his friend refused to go away despite several appeals, and claimed they appeared to be under the influence of drugs.
But the court concluded the defendants were "not subject to a current or imminent criminal attack" and as a result "were not in a situation where they were entitled to self-defense."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.