British rapper Pa Salieu jailed for 33 months for mass brawl | Rap

British rapper Pa Salieu has been sentenced to 33 months in prison on charges of violent disorder and possession of a bottle as an offensive weapon in relation to his involvement in a mass brawl that took place outside a bar in his hometown of Coventry in 2018.

Salieu, whose real name is Pa Salieu Gaye, was among a group of nine men accused of chasing and cornering a 23-year-old man, known by the pseudonym “Bobby”. The fight is said to have erupted after Salieu’s friend Fidel Glasgow, grandson of Specials singer Neville Staple, was stabbed to death aged 21. West Midlands Police are still investigating the murder.

In March, Salieu was acquitted of taking part in violent disorder during the fight but convicted of possessing a bottle as an offensive weapon, and had previously admitted another count of violent disorder relating to an attack on a man shortly after the fight. In 2015, Salieu received a suspended sentence for possessing a knife.

Warwick crown court was shown CCTV footage of “Bobby” running away and being chased by the group. Prosecutors claimed Salieu threw the bottle he had picked up at “Bobby”; when they caught him, Salieu used a tree branch to hit him in the head four times and kicked his body, reports Birmingham Live.

“Bobby” spent 10 days in hospital as a result, underwent what prosecutors described as “immediate, extensive surgery”, and has since recovered. Salieu told the court he had smashed the bottle in self-defence, claiming he thought the man was armed. Judge Peter Cooke dismissed Salieu’s claim.

The rapper’s lawyer, Jonathan Woodcock, asked for a suspended sentence, saying there were “realistic prospects of rehabilitation”.

Salieu is signed to Warner Records. He released his debut mixtape, Send Them to Coventry, in November 2020 and was named the winner of the BBC’s annual Sound Of… 2021 poll, which tips emerging artists for future success.

In August 2022, he was blocked from performing at the Commonwealth Games closing ceremony because he “failed a background check”, according to his Instagram post at the time. Salieu said he had already “had to cancel 90% of my shows this year” as the Home Office would not process the paperwork needed for him to travel abroad until the trial was finished.

He continued: “I have co-operated fully with the process. Met on time every single day. I have consistently tried to use my career to show people where I come from that there is a different life for us. Away from the roads. But what can you do if the police, the judiciary and the Ministry of the Interior do not care about you and do everything possible to prevent you from getting on with your life?”

Sentencing Salieu, the judge said: “You helped run Bobby to the ground and put him around.”

He continued: “You are a young man who has already had your career impacted as a result of these matters, but I see that it is a career that has flourished nonetheless.”

He expressed sympathy for the loss of Salieu’s friend, and admiration for how he had used his fame to help people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

“These are factors that speak well of you and must be taken into account in your favour,” the judge said. “I want you to focus on getting your life back on track and making the most of your talents, which I trust you will be able to do.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *