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Photo Credit: Fulton County Sheriff's Office

Prosecutors Call YSL Record Imprint a 'Criminal Street Gang'

Young Thug, the dynamic, eccentric and eclectic Atlanta rapper known for pushing boundaries on and off the mic was arrested Monday night in Georgia and booked into Fulton County Jail on gang-related charges.

The 2019 Grammy Award winner for his work as a writer and background vocalist on Childish Gambino's "This Is America," which won Record of the Year, Song of the Year, Best Rap/Sung Performance and Best Music Video, was booked into jail on two separate counts, according to jail records.

The 30-year-old, born Jeffery Lamar Williams, is charged with conspiracy to violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act and participation in street gang activity.

His RICO Act charge stems from an alleged offense in January 2013, and the gang activity charge is related to allegations from May 2018.

The arrest comes in the aftermath of a 56-count grand jury indictment naming 28 members and associates of William’s record label imprint YSL (Young Stoner Life) in which the prosecution reportedly identifies it as “a criminal street gang” that “claims affiliation with the national Bloods gang.”
Reporters Michael Seiden and Mark Winne of local news station WSB-TV broke the news late Monday night and posted updates on Twitter as the situation developed. Seiden provided key details from the 88-page indictment which he was able to review.
Labelmate Gunna, a two-time Grammy nominee, was also named in the indictment. The 28-year-old rapper, whose real name is Sergio Kitchens, is facing one count of conspiracy to violate RICO according to reporting by The New York Times.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that the indictment cites numerous gang-related incidents, spanning years, that include criminal actions by YSL operatives in coordination with the Bloods gang.

Perhaps the two most shocking allegations to be revealed so far are that Williams rented the car used in the 2015 drive-by shooting that killed 26-year-old Donovan Thomas and injured two others. Prosecutors also believe the shooters Christian Eppinger and Antonio Sumlin, who were detained earlier this year, sought Williams' permission to make a second attempt on rival rapper YFN Lucci’s life while he was in prison.

Williams' attorney Brian Steel said that his client was innocent.

“Mr. Williams committed no crime whatsoever and we will fight to my last drop of blood to clear him,” he told WSB-TV.

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