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Top 10 Celebrities Who Have Been Banned from Britain

Credits: Ashley Bowman Sean Harris
Written by Sean Harris Fame isn’t everything, especially at passport control. Welcome to WatchMojo UK and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the top 10 celebrities who have been banned from Britain! For this list, we’re flagging up the famous figures who have been denied entry into Britain at some point in their lives – including those who have since had their bans lifted. Special thanks to our user WordToTheWes for submitting the idea on our interactive suggestion tool: WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Top 10 Celebrities Who Have Been Banned from Britain

Fame isn’t everything, especially at passport control. Welcome to WatchMojo UK and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the top 10 celebrities who have been banned from Britain!

For this list, we’re flagging up the famous figures who have been denied entry into Britain at some point in their lives – including those who have since had their bans lifted.

#10: Busta Rhymes

The American rapper was scheduled to headline a RockCorps benefit gig at the Royal Albert Hall in 2008, but he almost didn’t make it thanks to immigration officials at London City Airport. Rhymes was stopped at the gate due to a series of unresolved convictions in the US. The hold-up was temporary though, and after a few hours under an armed guard, Busta bust out of the predicament, with his lawyers securing a legal injunction – and just in time to play the show, too.

#9: Julien Blanc

A self-styled dating coach, Julien Blanc held some serious influence back in 2014, leading seminars and events aiming to teach men how to meet and seduce women. But his rising profile soon fell apart, with critics and campaigners highlighting how his teachings objectified women, encouraged sexual harassment and promoted rape culture. By the end of 2014, Swiss-born Blanc had been deported from Australia and barred from entering Britain or Singapore – with various other nations promising to turn him away, as well.

#8: Serge Aurier

An international footballer who has played right back for Paris Saint-Germain and Tottenham, Aurier has previously proven a controversial character on the pitch. However, it was his off-pitch antics that prevented him from playing for PSG against Arsenal in the Champions League in 2016. Aurier was appealing a two-month prison sentence at the time of the fixture – handed to him for assaulting a police officer in Paris. The case caused UK authorities to revoke a previous visa, making it impossible for the player to travel at that time.

#7: Michael Savage

While the UK has banned various people for reasons akin to ‘inciting hatred’, few have a higher profile than US radio host and best-selling writer, Michael Savage. A one-time friend of Beat Generation poet Allen Ginsberg, Savage has touted criticism with controversial comments on everything from ISIS to the Catholic Church, to Robin Williams’ suicide. Then-Home Secretary Jacqui Smith banned Savage from Britain in 2009, a year after he had voiced contentious views on autism diagnosis. In response, Savage branded Smith “a lunatic”.

#6: Tyler, the Creator

Having released his third studio album in 2015, Tyler, the Creator kick-started his biggest ever world tour at the Coachella Festival in April. But the rapper was forced to skip scheduled dates in Britain – which had included planned appearances at Reading and Leeds Festivals – as controversial lyrics led to a nationwide ban. Theresa May was Home Secretary at the time, and she cited lyrics from Tyler’s debut album “Bastard” as particular reason for the visa veto, with Tyler’s critics claiming he glorified homophobia, misogyny and violence against women.

#5: Mike Tyson

Iron Mike isn’t the only boxer whose passport won’t pass with British authorities – just ask former lightweight Joan Guzmán – but Tyson’s easily the sport’s most famous name to have been denied entry. His book tour was redirected to Paris in 2013 because tightened UK immigration rules blocked anyone who had been sentenced to four or more years in prison from entering the country; Tyson served three years of a six-year sentence for rape, beginning in 1992.

#4: Chris Brown

A singer with a long history of legal troubles, Brown’s most infamous crime came in February 2009 when he physically assaulted his then-girlfriend, Rhianna. The domestic violence case caught global attention, not least because of the perceived leniency of Brown’s sentence – which involved five years of probation, but no jail time. Brown applied for a UK visa almost 18 months after the incident, hoping to take his European tour to Britain. But the application was denied in light of him “being guilty of a serious criminal offence.”

#3: Edward Snowden

Perhaps more than any other public figure on today’s list, Edward Snowden became famous as a result of the reason why he’s not allowed in the UK (or many other countries). Snowden was at the centre of an international scandal in 2013, when the former CIA worker leaked classified documents, disclosing information on various global surveillance programs – the UK’s included. Snowden was granted asylum in Russia, but Home Office letters were reportedly sent to international airports, calling for Snowden to be turned away from any Britain-bound flight.

#2: Martha Stewart

Martha Stewart’s career can be divided into two distinct periods; before and after her 2004 five-month prison sentence for investment fraud and obstruction of justice. The well-publicised trial and jail-term might’ve ended Stewart’s career, but America’s head homemaker came back arguably stronger than ever. Martha’s resurgence wasn’t enough to breach British borders, though. The UK border agency refused her entry in June 2008 thanks to her criminal record, scuppering her plans to present at the Royal Academy of Arts.

#1: Snoop Dogg

We finish with a rapper who underwent a long-running battle with the British border agency, after an airport fracas that occurred on UK soil, at Heathrow in 2006. Snoop and his entourage were involved in a brawl with the police, following an argument over entry into a first-class lounge. Ultimately, he was banned from re-entering the country. But D O Double G was VIP once more, when he won a £100,000 legal battle to remove the restriction in 2010. Snoop also shares an unlikely friendship with Martha Stewart – so who knows what would happen if they ever showed up together!
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