Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 20 April 2014

Lil Wayne facing solitary jail term

Rapper Lil Wayne was sentenced to a year in jail for having a loaded gun on his tour bus in 2007

Lil Wayne is facing the music after being accused of breaking jail rules by having gear for listening to tunes.

The Grammy Award-winning rapper was moved into what city jail officials call "punitive segregation" for a month, until his expected November release date, as punishment for stashing a charger and headphones for a digital music player in his cell earlier this year.

Lil Wayne generally will now be confined to his new cell 23 hours a day, with such exceptions as visits and showers, instead of being allowed to mingle with other inmates most of the day. He'll eat in his cell and won't get to socialise even during his hour a day of recreation, officials said.

He also will have to forego TV, and will be limited to one phone call a week instead of once a day or more, except for calls to his lawyer.

The 28-year-old rapper, one of the genre's biggest stars, has been held since March in the Rikers Island jail complex after pleading guilty in October 2009 to attempted criminal possession of a weapon, admitting he had a loaded semi automatic gun on his bus in 2007.

He got a one-year sentence but is expected to serve eight months because of time off for good behaviour, despite the music-player episode.

Officials said the headphones and charger were found in May, tucked in a crisp bag in a rubbish bin in the rapper's cell.

The items are considered contraband, as inmates can listen to music only on radios and headphones sold at the jail commissary. Officers said the music player itself turned up in another inmate's nearby cell.

Both men were charged with infractions that weren't crimes and were subject to a jail disciplinary process, not a court, and officials said the penalty was within norms for his infraction.

Born Dwayne Carter, Lil Wayne had the best-selling album of 2008 with "Tha Carter III," which won a best rap album Grammy.

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