Atlanta rapper 21 Savage has been arrested by immigration officials who say he is actually from the UK, reports say.
The rapper, Shayaa Bin Abraham-Joseph, came to the US in July 2005 aged 12 and failed to leave when his visa expired a year later, officials said.
An Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) spokesman said he was being held for removal proceedings.
He has previously described a childhood in Atlanta during interviews.
In an interview with Fader magazine in 2016 he said he first saw a gun aged eight – although the article did specify where this incident took place.
He is also quoted in the interview as saying he was expelled from school in Atlanta aged about 12 or 13 for taking a gun to class.
A CNN reporter quoted an ICE spokesman as saying: “His whole public persona is false”.
Other reports quoted ICE as saying that the rapper was being held in the state of Georgia for being unlawfully present in the US and for being a felon. He was convicted of drugs charges in 2014.
Officials were waiting for a judge’s ruling before deciding how to proceed, a spokesman said.
US website TMZ quoted his lawyer Dina LaPolt as saying she was trying to get the rapper out of detention “while we work with authorities to clear up any misunderstanding”.
“Mr Abraham-Joseph is a role model to the young people in the country – especially in Atlanta, Georgia and is actively working in the community leading programs to help underprivileged youths in financial literacy,” she added.
In December the rapper released his second album, I am > I was, which went to the top of the Billboard 200 albums charts.
The same month he apologised for a lyric in one of his songs that mentioned “Jewish money”.
It followed a similar apology by NBA star LeBron James, who had shared 21 Savage’s lyric on his Instagram account, where critics drew attention to it.
21 Savage said he was “sorry if I offended everybody”.