Tributes have poured in for rapper Black the Ripper, who has died aged 32 in unknown circumstances.
The rapper, whose real name was Dean West, found fame in the early noughties with mix tapes Holla Black and Afro Sumurai.
He was a strong advocate for the legalisation of marijuana in the UK and was also known as Ital Samson.
Tributes from fellow rappers and MC’s have poured in for the popular performer.
Chip posted a photo of him with Black the Ripper and captioned it with a heartbreak emoji and the words: “RIP my brother”.
South London grime artist Novelist wrote: “I can’t believe the news I’ve just got. I had good times with you cuz. Everyone’s gonna miss you. Rest in peace Black the ripper.”
Krept, one half of the duo Krept and Konan, wrote: “No way black the ripper. R.I.P man f***inghell what a horrible year.’ [sic]
The last known picture posted publicly of the rapper was of him with friends on the Caribbean island of Montserrat.
He is thought to have family on the island and he is seen leaning against a silver Mercedes in shorts and a t-shirt, looking relaxed.
The image is captioned: “2020 we isolated from the Bs. Stay woke @blacktheripper #corona #selflove #1link.” [sic]
House DJ and producer DJ Pioneer paid tribute by sharing a picture of the artist, writing on Twitter : “R.I.P Black The Ripper”
Actor Michael Dapaah wrote: “Real sad news RIP Black The Ripper, my condolences to his family & loved ones.”
Singer Hardy Caprio added: “2020 is the worst year we’ve ever seen. RIP Black The Ripper”
Black became infamous for ‘hotboxing’ the London Eye and once posted a video on social media showing himself smoking a cannabis joint in an Asda store.
In 2016, he took to Instagram to post a video of himself toking on a joint while he walked around Asda.
He posted the clip on his Dank Of England account, which is a pro-cannabis group that sells a range of merchandise.
An Asda spokesperson said at the time: “Asda is a family-friendly retailer and we expect all our customers to abide by the law and recognise the strict no-smoking policy we have in place across our stores.”
One year earlier, Dean and his followers rented a pod on the London Eye to smoke cannabis in, causing much amusement amongst tourists.
He posted a video on Instagram at the time, showing the London skyline outside his pod as he and his pals smoked joints.
The rapper would refer to himself as a “motivated stoner” and often shared videos of himself smoking cannabis in public as he pushed to have it legalised in the UK.
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