YSL Young Thug trial: Day 62 begins with heated argument in court

The trial of Young Thug and his YSL co-defendants began its 62nd day of the trial with fireworks. 

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Ural Glanville and Fulton County Assistant District Attorney Adriane Love got into a shouting match on Wednesday as the judge once again aired his displeasure at how slow the case is progressing. Judge Glanville scolded the attorneys for not filing motions early enough to rule upon before the jury was scheduled to enter the courtroom. 

The judge asked defense attorney Max Schardt why he had waited to file a motion pertaining to a prosecution PowerPoint presentation. His ire then turned to ADA Love. 

The judge later told both sides that if the case drags on, he would hold the trial on weekends. 

When was Young Thug arrested?

Young Thug, whose legal name is Jeffery Williams, was arrested on May 9, 2022, after a sweeping 88-page indictment accused him of being the co-founder of Young Slime Life, or YSL, a subset of the Bloods street gang. Prosecutors allege those named in the indictment have engaged in violent criminal activity in the city since 2012.

Despite requests for bond and an elaborate house arrest plan proposed to the court, Williams remained behind bars after concerns were raised over witness intimidation.

What are the charges Young Thug faces?

A Fulton County grand jury indicted Young Thug in May 2022, and more charges were added in a subsequent indictment in August of that year. The second indictment accuses Young Thug and 27 other people of conspiring to violate Georgia’s Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, known as RICO. The rapper is also accused of participation in criminal street gang activity, as well as drug and gun charges.

Prosecutors say Young Thug and two other people co-founded a violent criminal street gang in 2012 called Young Slime Life, or YSL, which they say is associated with the national Bloods gang. The indictment says Young Thug "made YSL a well-known name by referring to it in his songs and on social media."

In addition to specific charges, the August indictment includes a wide-ranging list of 191 acts that prosecutors say were committed between 2013 and 2022 as part of the alleged conspiracy to further the gang’s interests.

Included in that list is an allegation that Young Thug threatened in July 2015 to shoot a security guard who was trying to get him to leave an Atlanta-area mall. The indictment also says Young Thug rented a silver Infiniti sedan that was used in the killing of a rival gang member. And, on numerous occasions, he and others are alleged to have possessed various illegal drugs that they intended to distribute.

What do Young Thug's defense lawyers say?

Young Thug’s lawyers have said in multiple court filings that he is innocent of all crimes charged in the indictment. They argue that YSL is simply a record label. The rapper has pleaded not guilty.

Multiple defense attorneys in the case have said prosecutors were overzealous in their use of the RICO statute and the anti-gang law, both of which carry heavy penalties.

What penalties does Young Thug face if he's convicted?

Young Thug’s racketeering conspiracy charge and two gang charges each carry a penalty of five to 20 years in prison. The other five charges also carry potential prison time.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.