Turkish rapper Ezhel was arrested on May 25 for the charge “promoting use drugs,” according to The Independent. The arrest came after he was released on probation last month.
Ezhel’s manager Riza Okcu told The Independent, “writing a song cannot be a crime — the government should arrest the real criminals. Rap music tells the truth about what happens in the streets.”
Ezhel can face five to ten years in prison for promoting drug use, according to Bianet. With support from fans and popular venue Babylon, the hashtag #FreeEzhel was trending at #1 in Turkey on the night his arrest.
KOVL, a collective Ezhel started with producers Buggy and DJ Artz, stated that Ezhel turned himself in on the charge.
The 28-year-old MC from Ankara, Turkey is scheduled to perform with Wiz Khalifa on July 4 at Küçükçiftlik Park in Turkey and at the Sziget Festival in Hungary in August.
Watch his most recent music video, which has over 32 million views, and stream his latest project below.