US warned Sweden of 'negative consequences' if A$AP Rocky were not released from jail for trial
Sunday - 04/08/2019 22:40
Copies of the letters were posted by NBC News
A special U.S. presidential envoy warned of "potentially negative consequences" to U.S.-Swedish relations if American rapper A$AP Rocky were not released from prisonand allowed to live in a hotel during his trial this week on assault charges in Stockholm, according to media reports.
According to letters obtained by Aftonbladet, the Swedish newspaper, and published by NBC News and CNN, Ambassador Robert O'Brien had sought an "immediate humanitarian release" for Rocky, including supervised detention in a Stockholm hotel.
Sweden's prosecutor-general, Petra Lundh, declined to get involved, saying that under Swedish law, she could not interfere with the work of independent prosecutors.
President Donald Trump has personally intervened in the case, even calling Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven to offer to post bail for the rapper. Lofven declined to get involved, saying that the Swedish judicial system is independent and that Sweden, in any case, does not have a bail system.
Mayers, along with the two other defendants, Bladimir Corniel and David Rispers, had pleaded not guilty and claimed they were acting in self-defense when they became involved in a street brawl with an Afghan immigrant in Stockholm on June 30.
The case attracted global scrutiny after celebrities, including Kanye West and his wife, Kim Kardashian West, brought it to Trump's attention. Other entertainers, including Justin Bieber and Rod Stewart also spoke out in Rocky's support.
"A$AP Rocky released from prison and on his way home to the United States from Sweden," Trump tweeted. "It was a Rocky Week, get home ASAP A$AP!"
In his July 31 letter to the Swedish prosecution authority, O'Brien said he stressed to the Swedish officials in his meetings that the U.S.government "wants to resolve this case as soon as possible to avoid potentially negative consequences to the U.S.-Swedish bilateral relationship." He did not elaborate.
In explaining Sweden's independent judicial structure, Lundh told O'Brien: "This mean that no other prosecutor, not even I, may interfere with a specific case or try to affect the prosecutor responsible for the cases in how he or she should decide or otherwise act with regard to the case."
"I fully respect your commitment in representing your citizens, but as I have explained above, I am unable to and therefore will not take any action to accommodate Your requests," she wrote in the letter dated Aug. 1
Aftonbladet said the foreign ministry confirmed the meetings, but declined to elaborate on them or to comment on the U.S. threats of negative consequences.