Rapper DMX on life support after heart attack, says lawyer

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Rapper DMX has been hospitalised and is on life support at White Plains Hospital, New York, his lawyer Murray Richman confirmed on Sunday.

The rapper suffered a heart attack on Friday around 11pm at his home in White Plains and was taken via ambulance to a local hospital, where he remains on a ventilator, Richman said.

"As far as I know, he is still on life support," the lawyer added, saying he was "very worried."

Richman said he could not confirm a report by entertainment website TMZ that the 50-year-old New Yorker, known for his previous battles with drug addiction, had overdosed.

DMX, whose real name is Earl Simmons, reigned over the late 1990s and early 2000s with hits including "X Gon' Give It To Ya" and "Party Up." He has released eight albums, his most recent in 2015.

He released his debut major-label single "Get At Me Dog" in 1998 with Def Jam, which was on his first studio album "It's Dark and Hell Is Hot."

The album debuted at number one on Billboard's top album chart. It also had another hit single, "Ruff Ryders' Anthem," ushering in commercial success that would last for years.

The artist had a difficult childhood, growing up in housing projects with his mother and five sisters where he suffered abuse, and had continued run-ins with the law throughout his life, even after achieving fame.

Richman said he has known DMX for 25 years and said that he has been in touch with the rapper's family all day on Saturday. He said he is aware of the rapper's medical prognosis, but declined to comment on it.

DMX was released from prison in January 2019 after serving a year behind bars for tax fraud.

DMX was arrested in 2017 after federal prosecutors in New York say he concocted a multi-year scheme to hide millions in income from the IRS and skirt $1.7 million in existing tax liabilities.