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What Is Racketeering? How Tekashi 6ix9ine Was Convicted Of This Disturbing Crime — And All The Details About His Shocking Release

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hat is Racketeering? How Tekashi 6ix9ine Was Convicted Of This Disturbing Crime — And All The Details About His Shocking Release

Tekashi69 was arrested on Sunday, November 19, 2018 on racketeering charges.

According to TMZ, agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) arrested 6ix9ine along with his ex-manager Shottie and bodyguard Faheem Walter. Although specific details of the arrest are unknown as of now, TMZ reported that the men face racketeering and firearms charges after an investigation carried out by ATF, NYPD and Homeland Security.

This is far from Tekashi69’s first arrest. In July 2018, 6ix9ine was arrested for allegedly choking a 16-year-old fan. He’s also admitted to using a 13-year-old in a sexual performance in the past, a sex crime for which the rapper received probation.

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The rapper has also been kidnapped and robbed (allegedly by a former member of his own team), pleaded guilty to assaulting an NYPD police officer, and found his music video set under fire in November 2018.

Though 6ix9ine has managed to avoid serious jail time for his previous crimes (aside from a Riker’s Island stay in July 2018 for the alleged fan assault), according to TMZ, Tekashi69’s racketeering charges will “almost certainly” earn him a prison sentence.

What is racketeering?

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary describes racketeering as:

a pattern of illegal activity (as extortion and murder) that is carried out in furtherance of an enterprise (as a criminal syndicate) which is owned or controlled by those engaged in such activity.

According to Cornell Law, the U.S. government passed the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (or RICO) Act in 1961 which permits the government to arrest and sentence anyone involved in “racketeering activity,” which is basically any type of fraud or other crime such as murder or kidnapping carried out by an organized group.

The NY Daily News reported that the federal charges accuse Tekashi69 and his team of conspiring to commit various crimes including drug deals and ordered shootings. The charges date back to an April 2018 incident when 6ix9ine and members of his crew allegedly held rivals at gunpoint. 

TMZ reported that the rappers most serious charge, discharging a firearm while committing a crime, makes 6ix9ine eligible for a life sentence and a mandatory minimum of 25 years in prison.

Tekashi69 fired his whole team in the days leading up to his arrest.

On November 15, 6ix9ine took to Instagram to reveal that he fired his manager (who was also arrested on racketeering charges), booking agent, and publicist.

The next day, he appeared on The Breakfast Club to explain his decision to fire his whole crew.

“It’s so much money out here to be stolen,” he said, claiming his team was accusing him of being on drugs and paranoid. When asked how he found out people were stealing from him, he explained that though he charges $100,000 for shows, his booking agents were only giving him $60K. He said they would tell him, “we’re cleaning up your name right now, these venues are scared of you,” and claimed they were putting money towards security.

However, 6ix9ine went on to say that after speaking directly with people in charge of a show he declined to play thinking he would only make $60K, they revealed to him that they had already put $80K down as just a deposit, and claimed promoters threatened the rapper’s mom in the process. But when 6ix9ine reportedly addressed the promoters about the money, they claimed they didn’t have any — leading the rapper to believe they spent it for themselves.

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Is 6ix9ine part of a gang?

According to The Daily Beast, Tekashi’s lawyer has denied the rapper has any gang affiliations. However, in court documents, prosecutors have claimed the rapper belongs to the Brooklyn-based gang 9 Trey Gangsters. “[Tekashi] openly identifies as a member of the 9 Trey Bloods, frequently referencing the Bloods in his music and celebrating his gang involvement in the social media posts he broadcasts to his 14 million followers on Instagram,” court papers reportedly say.

Wikipedia describes the 9 Trey Gangsters as an offshoot of the Bloods. It was reportedly established in 1993 at Rikers Island where Tekashi6ix9ine spent time in 2018 and is known for sex trafficking and — wait for it — racketeering.

Tekashi 6ix9ine feared the FBI.

During his Breakfast Club appearance just days before his arrest, 6ix9ine told the hosts that he feared only two things in life. “I fear God, and I fear the FBI,” he said. “I’m fighting cases on cases,” he explained.

After a lengthy trial & subsequent conviction, Tekashi 6ix9ine was freed on April 2, 2020. 
Ultimately, Tekashi 6ix9ine was convicted of a variety of charges, including racketeering, and was sentenced to two years behind bars thanks to his cooperation with the authorities. His cooperation, and subsequent testimony, resulted in many convictions against various members of the deadly Nine Trey Gangsta Bloods. However, on April 2, 2020, the judge on the case granted him a "compassionate release," effective immediately, due to COVID-19 concerns. Under the compassionate release, Tekashi 6ix9ine can serve out the rest of his sentence at his home, and will wear an ankle monitor for the first four months of his release. 

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Micki Spollen is a YourTango editor and entertainment news writer. She also runs the travel blog Where In The World Is My Drink.