After serving nearly a decade behind bars, former Bad Boy rapper Loon has been released.
The 45-year-old was granted a compassionate release due to health concerns.
Prior to his arrest, Loon had left the music industry in 2008, changing his name Amir Junaid Muhadith after converting to Islam.
In 2012, he was extradited to the U.S. after he was arrested at an airport in Brussels, Belgium on drug trafficking charges. He pled guilty to one count of conspiracy with intent to distribute one or more kilos of heroin the following year, and was sentenced to a hefty 14 years in prison in addition to four years of supervised release.
Back in June, Loon had filed an “instant compassionate release” motion citing his concerns about the coronavirus pandemic, according to court documents obtained by XXL. He reportedly suffers from latent tuberculosis and has had battles with acute laryngopharyngitis, acute bronchitis, and bronchopneumonia.
On Wednesday (July 29), the New York Post reported that US District Judge Terrence Boyle granted the 45-year-old former rapper a compassionate release more than a year before he was scheduled to be released in August 2021. Boyle ruled that the coronavirus pandemic was an “extraordinary and compelling” reason for the early release, noting that Loon posed no threat to society. The remainder of his sentence was converted to time served.
His release was preceded by a 34-page letter asking Donald Trump to grant him clemency. The letter, written by his close friend, music producer Weldon Angelos, was backed by a number of his celebrities including Mary J. Blige, Faith Evans, Stevie J, Dame Dash and Kevin Garnett.
Loon’s official Twitter account posted a statement confirming the news on Wednesday (July 29), “After almost 9 years of incarceration and being tested with one trial after another, we are ever so grateful to Allah that He has finally brought this trial to an end. In this respect, we kindly ask you to allow brother Amir some privacy over the coming weeks to allow him to spend time with his honorable family.”
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