Omar Sercan Ipekcioglu

'Ezhel' whose real name is Omar Sercan Ipekcioglu, poses with his mother after he was released on June 19, 2018 in front of the Anadolu courthouse in Istanbul. 

Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images

A court in Istanbul has acquitted a rap musician of the charge of inciting drug use in his song lyrics and video clips.

Sercan Ipekcioglu, better-known as rapper “Ezhel,” was detained by narcotics police in Istanbul last month and later charged with encouraging drug use.

The state-run Anadolu Agency said the court acquitted him on Tuesday in the first hearing of the case, ruling that Ipekcioglu had not “acted with the intent of committing a crime.”

Dozens of Ezhel fans waiting outside the courtroom cheered and celebrated his acquittal.

His arrest had led to a social media campaign by supporters, with many users calling for his release using the hashtag “FreeEzhel.”

 

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