Culture

Former Bad Boy Rapper Loon Released From Prison After Eight Years

After serving nearly a decade in prison, Loon has been released.

Former Bad Boy rapper Loon has been released from prison early, according to XXL. The publication obtained court records that showed Loon was granted a “compassionate release” from Coleman Low, a Federal Correctional Institution in Florida. He was then released from prison on July 26. (He was scheduled to be released in August 2021.)

Loon, who is 45, was released early due to his health. On June 2, filed an “instant compassionate release” motion. In that document, Loon stated concern about COVID-19, writing that he suffers from latent tuberculosis and has had battles with acute laryngopharyngitis, acute bronchitis, and bronchopneumonia.

According to the records, Loon was released because it was determined he wasn’t a threat to society. The ruling reads:

“He has spent significant time in custody and has demonstrated an ability to comport with the rules…If released, he will reside with family and will be required to complete a term of supervised release during which his conduct will be monitored by Probation. Based on the foregoing, defendant has demonstrated that extraordinary and compelling reasons warrant a reduction in his sentence and that a sentence reduction otherwise comports with the applicable statutory and policy requirements.”

Last June, over a dozen celebrities asked President Donald Trump to grant clemency to Loon. The letter, which claims Loon only made an introduction and was never seriously involved with the deal, was signed by names like Snoop Dogg, Freeway, Faith Evans, NBA Hall of famer Kevin Garnett, and more.

Loon, who was born Chauncey Hawkins but converted to Islam in 2008 and changed his name to Amir Junaid Muhadith, has been locked up for nearly a decade. He was arrested in 2011 in Brussels, Germany. He was extradited to the United States in early 2012 and in 2013 he pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute 1 kilogram or more of heroin. He was sentenced to 14 years in prison.

Loon maintained his innocence and said he no choice but to take the deal. In a 2013 interview with BET he explained his decision:

“I was convicted of a felony at the age of 18 in 1993 and I was also convicted of a felony in 2006, so with the two felonies, in trying to take this case to trial and fight against the United States government and a whole list of informants who tried to give me a leadership role in a conspiracy that had nothing to do with me … I would have been looking at mandatory life in prison … no hopes of parole or anything, so based on that, I was pressured into a situation where I had to accept responsibility for this minor role … it was one of the hardest decisions I ever had to make in my life.”

Loon, who started his career alongside Mase, is best known for his appearance on “I Need a Girl (Pt. 2)” and his self-titled debut in 2003.

Dimas Sanfiorenzo

Dimas Sanfiorenzo is the Managing Editor for Okayplayer. He specializes in coverage centered around music, pop culture, and politics. Email: Dimas@okayplayer.com

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