ASHER D ‘RELIEVED’ AT SOLID DECISION

Asher D faced a maximum ten years in jail for weapon possession...

So Solid Crew rapper ASHER D has said he was “greatly relieved” at the 18-month sentence handed down to him today (March 25) for weapon possession.

In a statement released following his sentencing, Asher, real name Ashley Walters, thanked the court for leniency “for taking account of all the mitigating factors urged upon it” and added he felt he was treated fairly. The 19-year-old had faced a maximum of ten years in prison. The judge at Southwark Crown Court ruled that he will have to serve half his sentence.

Asher has also called on “young people” in Britain to “reflect upon their values and behaviour”. In a call for cool heads in inner-city Britain, where a gun culture is starting to thrive, his statement ends: “Both Ashley and his family trust that communities throughout the UK have time to digest the events which gave rise to him feeling he had no option other than to arm himself for self protection. They hope that this case may act as a catalyst for young people to reflect upon their values and behaviour, and examine the culture that is now all too commonplace.”

Asher had been held on remand in Feltham Young Offenders’ Centre in west London since he admitted possession of a loaded firearm in trial on March 4. It is likely he will see out his prison term in the centre.

Is his sentence fair? What do you think the future holds for Asher D? E-mail your comments to editor@nme.com. Next week’s issue of NME will print a selection of the best.