Young Thug Gang Conspiracy Trial: Jury Selection Begins
New York: Jury selection began Monday in Atlanta in the sweeping US gang conspiracy trial of influential rapper Young Thug and several others, criminal proceedings that have rocked the music world in the southern city and beyond. of the.
However, it could be weeks before arguments are heard, with jury selection expected to be lengthy as the Georgia state court tries to find a group of impartial people able to sit for a trial that is expected to last. much of 2023.
Prosecutors claim Young Thug’s record label is a front for a criminal network and presented song lyrics as evidence for the prosecution, a strategy that has raised eyebrows and prompted reprimands.
Born hip-hop star Jeffery Williams, who has pleaded not guilty, was one of more than two dozen people indicted last spring by a grand jury, which said those named belonged to a branch of the gang of rue Bloods identified as Young Slime Life, or YSL.
The indictment has rocked the rap world in Atlanta, where Young Thug is considered one of the most influential figures in the industry who has been instrumental in shaping the sound of contemporary rap.
Prosecutors charged all of the defendants with conspiring to violate the state’s Criminal Racketeering Act, which is modeled after the federal Racketeer-Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, widely known as RICO.
In its early days, this law was used to prosecute the mob, but it has more recently been cited to take down disgraced R&B singer R. Kelly for a litany of sex crimes.
Winning a RICO lawsuit requires proving the underlying offenses that support the conspiracy charge, which in this case includes murder, assault, carjacking, drug trafficking, and theft.
Defense lawyers insist that YSL – Young Stoner Life Records, a hip-hop and trap label founded by Young Thug in 2016 – is merely a music label and loose association of artists, not a gang .