Judge denies YSL rapper Young Thug’s allegations against RICO

A Fulton County judge denied a relationship with Young Thug after expressing concerns about the threats he may have made. After hours of testimony, the verdict was delivered in the early evening.

The 30-year-old rapper, whose legal name is Jeffrey Lamar Williams, watched the proceedings remotely from the Cobb County Jail when the ruling was announced shortly before 7 p.m. Thursday.

Judge: Lawyer can represent YSL rapper Young thug over RICO CHARGE

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Ural Granville said he considered several things. This includes a threat to the court from 2015, attributed to Williams, that “anyone who comes into the courtroom and speaks God’s honest truth, they will be killed.” The judge said the threat Effectiveness needs to be proven in court, but it suggests he could be a threat to the community.

“The two things that the Court was very concerned about were the threat he posed to the community and the escape,” Judge Granville said in his ruling.

Earlier in the day, defense attorney Brian Steele proposed an unprecedented house arrest plan, which he said would involve 24 off-duty armed police officers who would be working around the clock and at four of Williams’ Atlanta offices. A home in a big city gets paid $60 an hour.

A criminal defense investigator testified that the unprecedented security operation would cost more than $1 million a year, but prosecutors argued the defendants should not have to pay for their release. They said Williams was a violent gang leader who posed a huge threat to the community.

“It will accept a full search including K-9 poison dogs, and we will do everything we can to meet your honor,” said criminal defense investigator Charles Mittelstadt. “We will search for that environment and bless that environment, and from that moment, law enforcement will be in place and nothing will go in or out there.”

“We got offers from other gang members in Mr Williams. Some were on the indictment, some were not. They unanimously said Mr Williams was dangerous, they were afraid of him and if they got past him he would kill They and their families.”

Williams was arrested in Buckhead as part of a sweeping gang indictment that named 27 others, including Atlanta rapper Gunner. Fulton County prosecutors say the individuals named in the indictment are members of the Young Slime Life (YSL) gang, which has been operating in the city since 2012.

In the 88-page indictment, prosecutors claimed Williams was a co-founder of YSL. The indictment also details the various crimes allegedly committed by YSL members and documents Williams’ social media posts and raps that reference YSL.

Ex-prosecutor weighs in on young thugs, GUNNA and more in RICO case

Jeffrey Lamar Williams, stage name Young Thug, was arrested on May 9, 2022. (Fulton County Sheriff’s Office)

Since his arrest, Steele claims his client “has been living a life in complete isolation, as if he were a forgotten man in the world”.

Steele said in his emergency motion that Williams was placed in “solitary confinement” and relegated to “a windowless cement cubicle with only a bed, a toilet and a 24-hour-a-day lamp. dome light”. He said the rapper had no access to any type of media and “had no opportunity to exercise, shower or interact with people.”

If RICO is convicted, Williams could face up to 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Read the full list of charges and allegations

Atlanta rapper Gunner was also charged with violating the RICO Act, and his bail was denied in May. A judge set a trial date for January 2023.

What is the Racketee Influenced and Corrupt Organization (RICO) Act?

The Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) was created to fight organised crime. It was enacted in 1970 after it was signed into law by President Richard Nixon.

In federal terms, RICO was originally intended to be used against the Mafia. It was drawn from a list of 27 federal and 8 state crimes that were repeatedly committed over a 10-year period. These crimes may include fraud, theft, computer crime, embezzlement, credit fraud, investment schemes, human trafficking, illegal gambling, bribery, kidnapping, murder, money laundering, forgery and various drug charges.

The Justice Department has used RICO to dissolve multiple criminal families and root out corruption in several urban police departments. Prosecutors also used RICO to try to dismantle several street gangs and help prosecute businesses that violated federal law.

Georgia’s RICO statute is similar to the federal version, but broader in scope because criminal “enterprises” don’t have to exist as long. Georgia is one of only 33 states with its own RICO statute. However, in both state and federal law, a model of criminal enterprise must be established.


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