Iris Law's rapper boyfriend Pa Salieu jailed for two years for attack

Iris Law’s rapper boyfriend Pa Salieu is jailed for two years for beating victim after his best friend The Special’s singer Neville Staple’s grandson was stabbed to death

  • Coventry-based rap artist, 25, admitted to violent disorder at a previous hearing 
  • Caught on CCTV using tree branch to hit victim, who spent ten days in hospital
  • Minutes earlier a mass brawl had led to the death of his friend, Fidel Glasgow, 21 

Iris Law’s rapper boyfriend Pa Salieu was today jailed for two years and nine months for taking part in a mob attack on a 23-year-old man shortly after his best friend was stabbed to death.

The 25-year-old admitted violent disorder at a previous hearing, having been caught on CCTV using a tree branch to repeatedly hit the victim, who spent ten days in hospital.

The BRIT Award-nominated artist, who was named the BBC’s Sound of 2021, was cleared by a jury of a second count of violent disorder relating to a mass brawl in a nearby street minutes earlier, which led to the death of 21-year-old Fidel Glasgow, grandson of The Special’s singer Neville Staple.  

Salieu, who was last pictured with model Ms Law nine months ago, was convicted of possessing a bottle as an offensive weapon after telling jurors he smashed and brandished it to defend himself.

Rapper Pa Salieu, who’s relationship with Iris Law was reported nine months ago, admitted violent disorder over an attack on in September 2018. They are pictured on the left in October 2021 

Following his arrest, the court heard, Salieu, from Hillfields, Coventry, told police Mr Glasgow was his best friend and then exercised his right to silence.

No one has ever been charged with Mr Glasgow’s murder, despite extensive inquiries into disorder following a music event at Coventry’s Club M in the early hours of September 1, 2018.

Passing sentence on Salieu, who appeared in court using his full name Pa Salieu Gaye, Judge Peter Cooke told him: ‘Anyone harbouring the view that you are a young man being hard done by should pause to reflect that despite having a conviction for carrying a knife three years earlier – which resulted in a suspended sentence – in the course of these events you used two bottles and a stick.

‘It was your intention to turn a bottle into a jagged weapon.’

Salieu and others involved in the violence had acted like a ‘mob,’ the judge said, adding: ‘The case illustrates the dangers for any young man of acting with a pack mentality and getting involved in mass disorder.

‘If you do that somebody is likely to end up seriously injured or dead.

‘What happened to Fidel could have happened to anyone in that melee.’

During Friday’s sentencing hearing for the singer and six other men, prosecutor Oliver Weetch said stabbing victim Ikemefuna Okosisi-Ezeanyika, known as Bobby, was chased away from the scene of Mr Glasgow’s murder by a group including Salieu.

After the brawl (pictured: CCTV of the incident) Mr Glasgow was found injured at the rear of the nightclub and was rushed to hospital – where he later died

CCTV showed Salieu using a piece of wood to strike the victim, before he was brought to the ground in nearby Queen Victoria Road, near Coventry’s inner ring road.

The footage also caught Salieu – wearing a white top – hurling a bottle and climbing railings as Mr Okosisi-Ezeanyika was pursued.

Mr Okosisi-Ezeanyika, who suffered a brain injury and a stab wound to his side, was treated in intensive care, and needed emergency surgery on a wound to his abdomen.

Offering mitigation for Salieu, defence barrister Jonathan Woodcock said the death of Mr Glasgow was not the only time the artist had lost a friend.

Mr Woodcock said Salieu had used a stick rather a branch and it was not easy to determine how many blows he had delivered.

The barrister added: ‘It’s a very unattractive offence, of course it is. He is not involved in bringing ‘Bobby’ to the floor.

‘He does make an effort to keep (another defendant) away – it’s to his credit that he does that. He was not party to the most serious aspects of the violence.’

Slough-born Salieu still has shrapnel in his body after being shot in 2019, the court heard.

Fidel Glasgow, 21, was knifed in the stomach during a violent brawl which erupted outside the club 

Fidel’s grandfather Neville, who was a front man in the 1970s ska band The Specials, later appealed for witnesses to come forward with information

The attack on Mr Okosisi-Ezeanyika occurred after those ‘running him to ground’ had witnessed him being attacked near Club M, Judge Cooke said.

He told those involved in the violent disorder in which Mr Okosisi-Ezeanyika was kicked, whipped with a belt and punched: ‘You knew, because you were there or thereabouts, that he was the lone individual being pursued and attacked by the pack.’

During his sentencing remarks, the judge opted not to impose any financial penalty on Salieu, telling him: ‘I want you to focus on getting your life back on track… coming out and making the most of your talents, which I trust you will be able to do.’

Passing a sentence of 27 months for violent disorder and a further six months, to be served consecutively, for possession of an offensive weapon, the judge said: ‘I have no difficulty in accepting you are a young man who has already suffered impacts on your career by virtue of these proceedings.

‘But I observe that it is a career that has flourished nonetheless.’

Judge Cooke also said he was taking into account that Salieu was close with Mr Glasgow, and that the star had made ‘laudable’ efforts to assist people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

No one has ever been charged with Mr Glasgow’s murder, despite extensive inquiries into disorder following a music event at Coventry’s Club M in the early hours of September 1, 2018 

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