Reformed hip-hop star and ex-convict Shyne has filed a formal petition to become a permanent citizen of Israel. The Belize-born star served almost nine years of a 10-year sentence for opening fire at a 1999 party, where P. Diddy and his then-girlfriend Jennifer Lopez were celebrating.
He legally changed his name from Jamal Michael Barrow to Moses Michael Levi before his 2009 prison release and moved to Jerusalem, where he now strictly observes the Jewish faith. And the rapper, who now goes by the Hebrew name Moshe Levi Ben-David, says he has been meeting with government officials in the hopes of establishing permanent citizenship in his adopted country.
He says, "We are getting this dual citizenship thing going." Shyne recently credited his spiritual journey with his career revival. He told The Associated Press earlier this month, "I am not ashamed of the mistakes I have made. I'm not ashamed of where I was in order to get to where I am. Moshe Levi (his Hebrew name) has a great impact on the music that Shyne makes."