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Rapper T.I. completes sentence at Atlanta halfway house

Sep 29, 2011, 8:09 a.m.
Rapper Clifford "T.I." Harris poses for a portrait while promoting the show "T.I.'s Road To Redemption" in New York February 2, 2009. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

By David Beasley

ATLANTA (Reuters) - Grammy Award-winning rapper T.I. was released early on Thursday from the federal halfway house in Atlanta where he finished up an 11-month sentence on weapons possession and drug charges, a prison official said.

The 31-year-old Atlanta entertainer, whose real name is Clifford Harris, was assigned to the halfway house for the last month of his sentence after being released August 31 from a federal prison in Arkansas.

But shortly after arriving in Atlanta, the rapper was returned to a prison there because officials took issue with his luxury bus ride from Arkansas, his attorney said at the time.

Prison officials believed T.I. was conducting business on the bus, according to attorney Steve Sadow, who told Reuters that information was provided to show them that wasn't the case.

T.I. was transferred on September 15 back to the halfway house, where like other residents he was allowed to leave for approved purposes such as going to a job or a doctor's appointment.

On Thursday, T.I. "basically checked out of the halfway house for the last time," said Chris Burke, spokesman for the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

The rapper was sentenced in October 2010 to 11 months in prison for violating the terms of his probation on federal gun charges after he was arrested on suspicion of possessing the drug ecstasy.

It was his second stint behind bars in three years.

T.I.'s career began as a rapper in 2001, but he then branched out into other areas of the music and film industry, finding success both as a producer and actor.

Cable channel VH1 said last month that it had teamed up with the "Got Your Back" singer for a 10-episode series that will follow his readjustment to life outside prison and the making of a new album. The series is due to premiere December 5.

(Editing by Colleen Jenkins and Jerry Norton)

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