Popular French rapper MHD (real name Mohamed Sylla) has been arrested and charged with voluntary manslaughter in connection with the death of 23-year-old man Loïc K, along with three other men. The rapper's lawyer says MHD "denies any involvement." The Guardian reports:

A 23-year-old named as Loïc K was killed in July 2018 in the north-east of the city, in an act described as “purely gratuitous” by French police – he was kicked, beaten and stabbed during the attack from a dozen individuals in what has been reported as a fight between gangs from the 10th and 19th arrondissements. MHD (AKA 24-year-old Mohamed Sylla) hails from the 19th arrondissement, and named an album 19. His car was allegedly witnessed at the scene.

MHD was arrested on Tuesday and charged yesterday, Le Monde reports. The rapper’s lawyer, Elise Arfi, said that MHD “denies any involvement in this brawl” and added that “his presence at the scene of the crime has not been proven”. Arfi said she would appeal MHD being placed in custody, citing his “lack of a judicial record”.

Arfi said that MHD had “never been involved in fights between rival gangs”. She added that the car belonging to MHD had been “used by the individuals identified by investigators as those who committed this deadly aggression”, and stated that MHD had made contact with officials in July “as soon as he became aware” of its use in the attack.

MHD was scheduled to tour North America this year (including NYC's Gramercy Theatre on 2/23) in support of his acclaimed 2018 album 19. Stay tuned for more developments on this story.

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