US rapper Meek Mill has made his first public appearance after being freed from prison at a basketball game in Philadelphia.

The star, whose real name is Robert Rihmeek Williams, spent five months in jail after being sentenced to serve two to four years in November for probation violations.

His supporters have been running a campaign to get him out while he appeals against gun and drug convictions dating back 10 years.

On Tuesday, the state Supreme Court directed the Philadelphia judge who jailed him to immediately issue an order releasing him on unsecured bail.

"I feel great," he said before entering the Wells Fargo Centre, where he rang the ceremonial bell before the start of Game 5 of the Philadelphia 76ers-Miami Heat play-off series.

Image:Meek Mill was at the NBA game in Philadelphia soon after leaving prison

"It would just mean a lot for him to be back in Philly, in the city of Philadelphia with the fans, especially with a game like that tonight," 76ers player Ben Simmons said.

"Welcome home Meek Mill," the game announcer told the rapper, who sat courtside next to actor Kevin Hart, Sixers co-owner Michael Rubin, Philadelphia Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie and Democratic Pennsylvania governor Tom Wolf.

Before the game, Mill greeted the home team's players in their changing room.

A team of lawyers had campaigned to get Mill freed, levelling fierce criticism at the judge as a stream of high-powered figures and celebrities visited him in jail hours before the Supreme Court ruling.

Mill issued a statement saying the past months had been "a nightmare", and thanked his many supporters and visitors, who included Mr Rubin and New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft.

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"Although I'm blessed to have the resources to fight this unjust situation, I understand that many people of colour across the country don't have that luxury and I plan to use my platform to shine a light on those issues," Mill said.

He said he would focus his attention on getting his convictions overturned and look forward to resuming his music career.

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