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Atlanta-based rapper Young Thug faces six additional felony charges in an ongoing federal RICO case.
The 30-year-old Grammy Award-winning artist, whose given name is Jeffery Lamar Williams, was initially arrested in May and charged with conspiracy to violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act and participation in criminal street gang activity, according to jail records previously reviewed by Oxygen.com.
A new indictment filed last week in Fulton County Superior Court shows that he now faces even more charges of participation in criminal street gang activity, in addition to a violation of the Georgia controlled substances act, drug charges, possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, and possession of a machine gun, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. These new charges stem from evidence investigators allegedly found as they arrested the artist in May.
Williams' attorney has denied any wrongdoing on his client's part.
“Mr. Williams has committed absolutely no crimes. We cannot wait for a trial date.”Williams’ attorney, Brian Steel, told the outlet.
Williams remains jailed without bond; he has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
He is one of 28 people charged in the initial indictment. All the alleged crimes were committed on behalf of the Young Slime Life street gang, which shares an acronym with his record label YSL, or “Young Stoner Life,” according to authorities; the Associated Press noted that the label refers to its artists as "Slime Family" and that the label released a compilation album in 2021 entitled "Slime Language 2." The indictment also named at least three other artists on the YSL label, according to Atlanta Fox affiliate WAGA. Among them is Gunna, whose given name is Sergio Giavanni Kitchens,Yak Gotti, whose given name is Deamonte Kendrick, and Unfoonk, whose given name is Quantavious Grier.
Prosecutors allege that the so-called gang, founded by Williams and two others, has ties to the infamous Bloods gang, ABC News reports. An updated version of the indictment lists 65 counts against the 28 individuals. The allegations include multiple murders, attempted murders and other crimes that date back to 2015. It includes the 2015 murder of rival gang member Donavon Thomas Jr. and the alleged attempted 2022 jail murder of rapper YFN Lucci, WSB-TV in Atlanta reports. Nichols and Shannon Stillwell and Quamarvious Nichols were charged with one additional count of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon related to the March 2022 death of Shymel Drinks, according to The AJC.
A new bond hearing has been scheduled for Williams for next week. A trial is expected to begin in January.
Williams co-wrote the 2018 song “This is America” with Childish Gambino; it won a Grammy the following year. The same year that the song was released, Williams made a heartfelt apology in court, promising to change his lifestyle after getting arrested for possession of a firearm and drugs.
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