Ja Rule ‘devastated’ at being denied entry to UK for tour


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Ja Rule ‘devastated’ at being denied entry to UK for tour

FILE PHOTO: Ja Rule attends the BET Awards in Los Angeles, California, U.S. June 25, 2023.

REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni/File Photo

The US rapper – who has a criminal record – canceled his tour after being denied entry to the UK just days before he was set to perform

LONDON, United Kingdom – American rapper Ja Rule said he was “devastated” that he had been denied entry to Britain days before he was due to begin the opening leg of his international tour due to his criminal record.

All the British performances of The Sunrise Tour, including in London, Nottingham, and Liverpool, were showing as canceled on the Ticketmaster website. It was due to begin on March 1.

“I’m so devastated, I can’t believe the UK won’t let me in. I’ve spent a half million dollars in production of my own money to put this tour together only to be denied entry days before my shows,” Ja Rule said on social media site X late on Tuesday.

“The UK is one of the few European countries that restricts entry to people with criminal records.”

The Grammy-nominated rapper, whose real name is Jeffrey Atkins, served about two years in prison on gun and tax evasion charges.

He pleaded guilty in 2011 to failing to file tax returns over a five year period and pleaded guilty to a weapons possession charge in 2010.

In a follow up post on Wednesday, Ja Rule said the promoter had assured his team that the criminal record would not be an issue.

British government guidance says permission to enter will be refused where someone has been convicted of a criminal offense, either in Britain or overseas, for which they received a custodial sentence of 12 months or more.

Ja Rule secured a Grammy nomination for his 2001 album Pain Is Love and has appeared in several films, notably 2001’s The Fast and the Furious.

In a separate incident in 2022, US rapper Lil Wayne was denied entry into the UK where he had been scheduled to perform at a British music festival. Organizers said the refused entry was a last minute decision by the Home Office.

Lil Wayne had previously been sentenced to one year in jail in 2010 relating to a gun possession charge. – Rappler.com

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