Not a single juror has yet been seated in Young Thug trial
Jury selection is entering its second month in Atlanta’s high-profile RICO trial
ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - Jury selection continues in the Young Thug trial, as Judge Ural Glanville, prosecutors and defense attorneys continue screening potential jurors claiming exemption mainly due to personal and/or professional hardships.
The rapper, whose real name is Jeffery Williams, is facing eight criminal counts under a federal law that was originally enacted to fight organized crime.
More than a month ago, about 600 jurors were summoned to begin questioning, and Judge Ural Glanville is still hearing requests from some jurors to be exempt from a trial which is expected to last between six and eight months.
The last trial of such magnitude was the Atlanta Public Schools corruption and cheating scandal. The same number of jurors were initially summoned, and jury selection took six weeks. The trial itself, which began on Sept. 29, 2014, lasted eight months, and to date, remains the longest criminal trial in Georgia history.
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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