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Canceled N.J. Rap Concert Back on

August 23, 2002

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CAMDEN, N.J. (AP) _ An Atlantic City rap concert canceled earlier this week will go on as planned after an agreement on providing security was reached Friday by the city and concert promoters.

A federal judge said he did not think the Atlantic City Surf, the baseball team that leases the city-owned Sandcastle Stadium, really canceled Sunday’s show because of fears of violence.

``I felt that the activities _ first of the city, then of the Surf _ were not based on security,″ said U.S. District Judge Joseph E. Irenas. ``They were based on disliking the message.″

The baseball club abruptly canceled the show Monday. A city police memo indicated that rap artist N.O.R.E. inspired violence and has associations with the Bloods street gang.

Under pressure from the judge, the Surf, Atlantic City and Platinum Link Entertainment reached a deal in which the promoter will put up $15,000 to pay as many police officers as the city deems necessary.

City officials said Friday they would need 40 officers and, with overtime, the cost of deploying them would be more than $15,000.

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