Sources say, Yasiin Bey, the hip hop artist known as rapper Mos Def, appeared in South African court Friday after being arrested Thursday at South Africa’s Cape Town International Airport for illegally using a “world passport”. According to the South Africa Department of Home Affairs says, Bey has 14 days to leave South Africa, due to this fake passport and overstaying his residence in South Africa. Bey had entered South Africa on an American passport in 2013 and had been in the country since then, but had overstayed his welcome by 2014.
Bey appeared in court with family members also in South Africa without a permit. According to the Associated Press, a court order to leave the country results in a five-year ban from the country, but Bey may appeal for leniency. Bey has been living in South Africa with his family since 2013. The authorities said that Bey is able to pursue permanent residency in South Africa if he should want to.
According to World Government of World Citizens, “the World Passport is a 30-page Machine Readable Travel Document (MRTD*) with alphanumeric code line, scanned-in passport photo and ‘ghost’ security paper with embedded logo, the data page laminated, in 7 languages: English, French, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, Chinese and Esperanto.”
Billboard cites, that Yasiin Bey explained his reasons for leaving the U.S. during a 2014 interview with Beats By Dre. “It’s really America’s a very challenging place for me,” he said. “Sure, there’s great business opportunities, familiarity and all that. But given the current social, political, economic climate, it’s very difficult. Unnecessarily difficult. To create to the degree of fullness, the type of robust, type of creativity that I like to have, it’s very difficult for me to produce that here.”