A$AP Rocky pleads not guilty to assault in high-profile trial in Sweden
A$AP Rocky pleaded not guilty in Sweden on Tuesday as the American rapper and two other men who are believed to be part of his entourage went on trial after allegedly attacking a man in Stockholm last month.
The rapper, whose real name is Rakim Mayers, was taken into custody on July 3 and charged with assault last week. Swedish prosecutors claim Mayers and the two other suspects "deliberately, together and in agreement" attacked Mustafa Jafari, 19, on June 30 before appearing at a music festival.
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Mayers and the other men are accused of pushing Jafari to the ground and kicking him, and hitting him with parts of or a whole bottle. Court documents include numerous photos of Jafari's cuts, bruises and blood-stained clothes. His lawyer said he did not provoke the assault.
Fox News confirmed Mayers pleaded not guilty on Tuesday in Stockholm District Court, and said he acted in self-defense.
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Mayers' lawyer, Martin Persson, said on Monday that he planned to present the court with new evidence, including showing that "no bottle has been used to hit or injure anyone" and that the violence used was "within the limits of the law."
Jafari is seeking 139,700 Swedish kronor, or $14,700 USD, in damages for his injuries, lost income and damages to his appearance.
The high-profile legal case has caught the attention of many celebrities and President Trump, who tweeted that he told Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven he'd "personally vouch" for the rapper's bail. Bail, the option for a defendant to pay cash in exchange for release until trial, does not exist within the Swedish criminal justice system.
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Other recording artists including Justin Bieber, Sean "Diddy" Combs, Shawn Mendes, Nicki Minaj and Post Malone have also spoken out on Mayers' behalf. Bieber said he appreciated Trump was trying to help the rapper, but called him out on Twitter for seeming to care much less for children being detained at the border.
Because of the "strong interest from the media and the public," the trial is being held in a secure courtroom. The court said no photography or filming was allowed to take place during the proceedings.
Fox News' Anastasia Bard and The Associated Press contributed to this report.