Young Thug Denied Bond in RICO Case, Judge Cites 'Danger to the Community'
By Miguel A. Melendez
Young Thug had a hearing Thursday in Atlanta court, where the judge denied bond after saying he's "a danger to the community."
"There has been significant proffers about Mr. Williams being a danger to the community," the judge said, via Variety. Young Thug's real name is Jeffrey Williams.
"In particular," the judge continued. "the state's proffer that they have taken proffers from other gang members -- people who are in this particular indictment and others who are not in this indictment -- that he is the leader of the gang, he is dangerous and if he crosses them he'll kill them or their families."
The judge also expressed "some concerns" about the rapper being a flight risk. Young Thug is embroiled in a massive sting operation that led to charges of racketeering and gang activity. Rapper Gunna is also the target of the investigation, and he turned himself in last month after he was charged with one count of conspiracy to violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO).
According to Variety, Machine Gun Kelly was among those who testified on Young Thug's behalf that the rapper be granted bond. Young Thug also took part in the hearing and appeared via video call from jail.
After Gunna turned himself in, Young Thug was charged with additional offenses relating to drugs and weapons.
According to Fulton County Jail records, the rapper is facing charges of possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, possession of a schedule III, IV, or V controlled substance with intent to distribute, possession of a sawed-off shotgun, sawed-off rifle, machine gun, dangerous weapon, or silencer, possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, and three counts of participating in criminal gang activity through the commission of a crime.
Williams was arrested and booked into Fulton County jail and originally charged with conspiracy to violate the RICO Act, which police say occurred in January 2013, and alleged participation in criminal street gang activity, which police say occurred in May of 2018.
According to Fulton County court docs, obtained by ET, Williams is accused of renting a car that was used in the murder of a rival gang member, Donovan Thomas Jr., back in 2015. The entire indictment includes 56 counts and charges 27 associates of Williams' collective and record label YSL or Young Stoner Life/Young Slime Life/Young Slatt Life.
The indictment defines YSL as a "criminal street gang" founded in 2012 with an affiliation with the Bloods.
Young Thug, via his attorney Brian Steel, denied the allegations against him. Steel told WSBTV that he will fight on Williams' behalf until his name is cleared.
"Mr. Williams vehemently denies the allegations lodged against him and he looks forward to the opportunity to defend this case in court. We will fight this case ethically, legally and zealously. Mr. Williams will be cleared," Steel said.