American hip hop impresario fined for sex assault in UK

A$AP Bari, real name Jabari Shelton, arrives at the Old Bailey in central London, Thursday Jan. 3, 2019. The American hip hop impresario and fashion designer has been fined for sexual assault after pleading guilty in a London court. (Kirsty O'Connor/PA via AP)

LONDON — An American hip hop impresario and fashion designer was fined Thursday for sexual assault after pleading guilty in a London court.

ASAP Bari, whose real name is Jabari Shelton, was fined 4,000 pounds ($5,000) in the Old Bailey court Thursday and ordered to pay 2,500 pounds to the victim.

Judge Zoe Smith told the 27-year-old he had a "very unpleasant attitude" toward women after she was shown footage of him pulling the covers from a naked woman as she lay in bed and slapping her bottom as she told him to stop. On the video, Shelton is abusive and obscene as he demands the woman perform a sex act with him.

"The court does have concerns in this matter," the judge said. "You say that you were angry but there is no need to ever be so abusive and humiliating to a female."

The attack happened at The Curtain Hotel in east London in July 2017 after a music festival. It is not clear who filmed the video, which was recorded on a mobile phone and leaked online.

Shelton's lawyer said the footage was leaked by someone who wanted to harm Shelton.

Elaine Cousins of the Crown Prosecution Service said Shelton "clearly believed he was entitled to behave this way. He sexually assaulted his victim while she was in an extremely vulnerable position. He knew this was being recorded on a mobile phone."

She said it was clear from the footage that the victim had not consented.

Shelton, known for founding the rap collective ASAP Mob, pleaded guilty to one count and avoided any prison time.

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