Read the witness list in Young Thug’s trial

Read the witness list in Jeffery Williams’ massive RICO trial
Here's how the RICO Act is being used in the Young Thug trial.
Published: Jan. 19, 2023 at 2:38 PM EST|Updated: Jul. 27, 2023 at 11:25 AM EDT
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ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - The witness list in the massive racketeering and gang-related trial of rapper Young Thug includes some prominent musicians and executives in th entertainment industry.

The rapper known as Killer Mike - real name Michael Render - and Corey Jackson, a.k.a. Lil C-Note and a Young Thug protégé, are on the list, as is Atlanta City Councilman Antonio Lewis. Rapper Brian “Birdman” Williams is also on the list.

Williams is on trial in Fulton County in a massive RICO case involving himself and eight other defendants. Prosecutors allege Williams and his co-defendants are members of the Young Slime Life (YSL) gang, while defense attorneys argue YSL is simply the name of a record label, Young Stoner Life.

Jury selection has already lasted longer than any other trial in Georgia history, and has been repeatedly plagued by arrestscharges, and disruptions. The trial itself could last for more than a year. Georgia’s longest jury selection and its longest trial both came in the Atlanta Public Schools teacher scandal of 2014-15.

Williams is facing eight criminal counts under a federal law that was originally enacted to fight organized crime.

The federal Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) law was passed and signed into law in 1970 by President Richard Nixon. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, it allows prosecutors to link apparently unrelated crimes with a common objective into a prosecutable pattern of racketeering.

RICO also provides for more severe penalties and permits a defendant to be convicted and separately punished for the underlying crimes that constitute a racketeering pattern.

Georgia is one of 33 states that has its own RICO law, but in the Peach State, the alleged criminal enterprises do not have to have existed as long as under the federal law.

Under the Fulton County grand jury indictment, Williams is charged with participation in a criminal street gang activity.

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