One of the biggest stories in Hip Hop this year centers around authorities arresting Jeffery “Young Thug” Williams and Sergio “Gunna” Kitchens for a RICO case. Prosecutors charged the two Atlanta-bred rappers, as well as other YSL affiliates, in Fulton County, Georgia.
Young Thug faces nine criminal counts, including Conspiracy to Violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act and Participation in Criminal Street Gang Activity. The District Attorney also indicted Thug on drug and firearm charges.
Gunna was charged with one count of Conspiracy to Violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act. Lawmakers on the federal and state level originally began passing RICO laws in the 1970s as a way to counteract organized crime syndicates such as the mafia.
Over the last several years, prosecutors around the country have charged numerous rappers in RICO cases. Tekashi 6ix9ine, Casanova, and YFN Lucci have all been in court for racketeering/gang conspiracy-related prosecutions.
Atlanta-based emcee Tip “T.I.” Harris is questioning why a specific white supremacist organization is not also under government scrutiny for racketeering. The 41-year-old Grand Hustle Records co-founder took to Instagram to publicize his concerns.
“Why the KKK ain’t been hit [with] a RICO…” posted T.I. on Wednesday, referring to the American hate group also known as the Ku Klux Klan. His caption simply included the “🤔” emoji. The often-hooded KKK has terrorized African-Americans, Jewish-Americans, immigrants, and other groups for over a century and a half.