Puff Daddy protégé Mase was arrested early Thursday morning by New York
City police for patronizing a prostitute, according to police spokeswoman
The charges, which Mase's lawyer said the rapper adamantly denies, were later
dropped for a lesser violation.
The 22-year-old Mase, a.k.a. Mason Betha -- who got his start with guest
appearances on such songs as Notorious B.I.G.'s "Mo Money Mo Problems"
and Puff Daddy's "Can't Nobody Hold Me Down" -- was arrested at 12:30 a.m.
on 45th Street between 9th and 10th avenues, Kelly said.
Mase's attorney, Peter Frankel, who appeared with the rapper in Midtown
Community Court on Thursday, said that the misdemeanor solicitation charge
was dismissed and that his client pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of disorderly
conduct. Mase paid a $200 fine for that infraction and was released.
"He absolutely denied the solicitation charges," Frankel said, noting that
Mase has had no prior legal run-ins.
Mase's debut album, Harlem World, entered the Billboard 200
albums chart at #1 last November.