Gunna pleaded guilty today to one count of conspiracy to violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act, Atlanta’s Channel 2 Action News reports and Pitchfork can confirm. The rapper took an Alford plea, meaning that he pleaded guilty to the one charge while maintaining his innocence on that same charge as a form of self-preservation.
Gunna was sentenced to five years in prison, but it was commuted to time served; the remaining balance of the sentence has been suspended, too, meaning that he is likely to be released from custody in due time. As part of the deal, the rapper will serve 500 hours of community service.
In a statement shared with Pitchfork by Gunna’s lawyer Steve Sadow, the musician said:
When I became affiliated with YSL in 2016, I did not consider it a “gang”; more like a group of people from metro Atlanta who had common interests and artistic aspirations.
My focus of YSL was entertainment – rap artists who wrote and performed music that exaggerated and “glorified” urban life in the Black community.
While I have agreed to always be truthful, I want to make it perfectly clear that I have NOT made any statements, have NOT been interviewed, have NOT cooperated, have NOT agreed to testify or be a witness for or against any party in the case and have absolutely NO intention of being involved in the trial process in any way.
I have chosen to end my own RICO case with an Alford plea and end my personal ordeal by publicly acknowledging my association with YSL. An Alford plea in my case is the entry of a guilty plea to the one charge against me, which is in my best interest, while at the same time maintaining my innocence toward the same charge. I love and cherish my association with YSL music, and always will. I look at this as an opportunity to give back to my community and educate young men and women that “gangs” and violence only lead to destruction.
Gunna was arrested in May with Young Thug and other members of the Young Stoner Life (YSL) label and imprint. The arrests were the result of an indictment that charged the rappers and others with conspiring to violate the RICO Act.
Young Thug remains incarcerated as he awaits trial. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, jury selection in the case is scheduled to begin on Wednesday, January 4, 2023.
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