By NAN Staff Writer
News Americas, MIAMI, FL. Fri. Aug. 20 2021: Jailed, former Bad Boy rapper Shyne, was sent packing out of the US in 2009 as a deportee, back to his native country of Belize, following a stint in prison. His deportation meant he faced a ban from ever returning. But this week he was back in the US and being heralded in Georgia.
Shyne, 42, whose real name is Jamal Michael Barrow, is now the new leader of the conservative opposition party in Belize. This week he was presented with a medal of honor by Georgia State Senator Dr. Lester Jackson as part of his trip back to the US 12 years later.
He also held meetings with other black Democratic politicians in Georgia, including Rep. Erica Thomas, vice chair of the Georgia Democratic Caucus and says he hopes to “strengthen relationships and establish new relationships to further the development of Belize.”
The junior Barrow until recently held a seat in Belize’s House of Representatives for a year before gaining his new role. His father, Dean Barrow, served as prime minister of Belize until his party lost the elections.
Shyne became a well-known name in hip-hop in the late 1990s and early 2000s as mogul Sean “P. Diddy” Combs’ protege under his Bad Boy Records label. Hewas involved in the infamous 1999 Club New York nightclub shooting where an argument between Combs and a partygoer led to a shootout that injured three people.
The “Bonnie and Shyne” singer, whose 2000 self-titled debut album went platinum in sales, was convicted on two counts of assault, reckless endangerment and gun possession a year later and sentenced to 10 years in prison for his involvement in the shooting. He was released from jail in 2009 anddetained by US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) before being deported back to Belize because he was only a green card holder.
A dozen years later, he is back in the US on an official visit after being given a US visa to travel here reportedly as a diplomat, based on help from Combs. Barrow says his next goal is to become the country’s Prime Minister, but his plans have been threatened by attempts to pass bills that ban ex-cons from holding the position.