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Rappers Gunna and Young Thug Charged With Racketeering

Atlanta rapper Young Thug co-founded a violent street gang that committed multiple murders, shootings and carjackings over a decade and promoted its activities in songs and on social media, prosecutors allege in an indictment that charges him, rapper Gunna and 26 others with racketeering, the Associated Press reports. The filed in Atlanta's Fulton County quotes lyrics from multiple music videos as evidence and accuses alleged gang members of committing violent crimes to collect money for the gang, promote its reputation and enhance its power and territory. Young Thug, whose given name is Jeffery Lamar Williams, co-wrote the hit “This is America” with Childish Gambino, which became the first hip-hop track to win the song of the year Grammy in 2019. Fulton County prosecutors say that in 2012, he and two others founded Young Slime Life, a violent criminal street gang commonly known as YSL that is affiliated with the national Bloods gang. He was arrested Monday at his home in the upscale Buckhead Atlanta neighborhood. He was held at the Fulton County Jail on charges of conspiracy to violate Georgia’s anti-racketeering law and participation in a criminal street gang.


Also charged in the indictment were rapper Gunna, whose real name is Sergio Kitchens, and aspiring rapper Christian Eppinger, who was already in jail and is accused of shooting an Atlanta police officer six times in February. Gunna, who is accused of conspiracy to violate the state’s RICO Act, was not in custody as of Tuesday afternoon. The indictment includes a wide-ranging list of 181 acts that prosecutors say were committed starting in 2013 as part of the alleged conspiracy to further the gang’s interests. The indictment also accuses members of the gang of trying to kill rapper YFN Lucci, whose given name is Rayshawn Bennett, by “stabbing and stabbing at” him with a shank in the Fulton County Jail. YFN Lucci was among a dozen people charged in another gang-related indictment in Fulton County a year ago. The indictment also says it was an alleged member of the gang who shot at a bus in 2015 that was carrying rapper Lil Wayne.

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