Wed | Dec 2, 2020

Meek Mill’s drug conviction overturned

Published:Friday | July 26, 2019 | 12:30 AM
Rapper Meek Mill (second right) departs with his son, Rihmeek ‘Papi’ Williams, after a hearing at a Pennsylvania appeal court in Philadelphia earlier this month. Lawyers for Mill asked an appeal court on Tuesday to overturn a 2008 drug and gun conviction that has kept the rapper on probation for a decade and made him a celebrity crusader for criminal justice reform.
Rapper Meek Mill (second right) departs with his son, Rihmeek ‘Papi’ Williams, after a hearing at a Pennsylvania appeal court in Philadelphia earlier this month. Lawyers for Mill asked an appeal court on Tuesday to overturn a 2008 drug and gun conviction that has kept the rapper on probation for a decade and made him a celebrity crusader for criminal justice reform.

Meek Mill is “ecstatic” after his 2008 drug conviction was overturned.

The 32-year-old rapper has been granted a new trial after an appeal court in Pennsylvania overruled the verdict from 11 years ago and also overturned the trial judge’s 2017 finding that Meek had violated the terms of his parole, which had caused the Save Me hitmaker to return to prison for five months.

Meek, whose real name is Robert Rihmeek Williams, said in a statement: “I’d like to thank the Pennsylvania Superior Court judges for their wisdom and transparency in reviewing my case, unanimously overturning my conviction and granting me a new trial. The past 11 years have been mentally and emotionally challenging, but I’m ecstatic that justice prevailed.”

The three-judge panel also assigned the case to a new judge and in their ruling, they felt that, with new evidence of possible police corruption, the rapper would be able to prove his innocence.

The opinion, which was obtained by People magazine, stated: “We conclude the after-discovered evidence is of such a strong nature and character that a different verdict will likely result at a retrial.”

A date for the retrial has yet to be set.

The All Eyes on You hitmaker has been an advocate for justice reform following his own legal woes and he’s vowed to continue that work, as he believes he wouldn’t have received the retrial decision without the high-profile backing he’s had.

He said in his statement: “This positive outcome wouldn’t have been possible without the support of my family, my attorneys, Jay-Z, Desiree Perez, Michael Rubin, the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office and my supporters who have stood with me through the ups and downs.

“Unfortunately, millions of people are dealing with similar issues in our country and don’t have the resources to fight back like I did.

“We need to continue supporting them. I’m committed to working with my team at the REFORM Alliance to change these outdated laws and fix our broken criminal justice system.”