Trump threatened Sweden with a trade war to release ASAP Rocky

The justice minister says his encounter with the former president showed ‘not to take our democracy for granted’

Gino Spocchia
Friday 01 July 2022 15:33 BST
<p>Donald Trump called for Sweden to release ASAP Rocky in 2019</p>

Donald Trump called for Sweden to release ASAP Rocky in 2019

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Sweden’s justice minister has revealed how his country was allegedly threatened with a trade war by Donald Trump following the arrest of ASAP Rocky in Stockholm in 2019.

The rapper, whose name is Rakim Mayer, was arrested and charged with assault in Stockholm in July 2019 after video emerged of him beating up a fan on the street.

Mr Trump petitioned Sweden to “free” the rapper ahead of his trial, and even took to Twitter at the time to say he was “very disappointed” in Sweden’s then-prime minister Stefan Lofven for being unable to release Mayer.

Speaking to Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter on Thursday, the country’s justice minister Morgan Johansson said the former US president went as far as warning the Swedish government of “trade restrictions” should ASAP Rocky not be released.

The then-US president also allegedly told Stockholm that he had approached the European Commission, the head of the European Union, for backing.

“This story demonstrates how important it really is to stand up for our legal principles and not to take our democracy for granted,” the minister and MP argued. “If you can try and do something like this against Sweden, what will you then try and do to slightly weaker countries that don’t have the European Union behind them?”

Sweden’s Justice Minister Morgan Johansson

Mayer was eventually found guilty in a Swedish court and handed a suspended sentence, much to the disappointment of the former US president.

“Give A$AP Rocky his FREEDOM,” said Mr Trump on Twitter, where he was later banned for furthering election lies. “We do so much for Sweden but it doesn’t seem to work the other way around. Sweden should focus on its real crime problem!”

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