Tekashi 6ix9ine pleads not guilty to racketeering, firearms charges
A pretrial conference is set for Jan. 22, 2019, and his trial date has been set for Sept. 4, 2019.
He’ll remain in custody, although it is unclear for how long.
6ix9ine is among five people indicted last week on charges that he directed or participated in violent acts as part of a deadly gang known as the 9 Trey Bloods.
The indictment alleges that the violent episodes involving 6ix9ine included the July shooting of a bystander in Brooklyn and the gunpoint robbery of one of the gang’s rivals last spring.
Last week, 6ix9ine was transferred from a federal jail in Brooklyn to a new facility for “security reasons.”
He was removed from the Brooklyn Metropolitan Detention Center in Sunset Park where he was being housed in general population following his arrest on racketeering and firearms charges.
6ix9ine’s lawyer Lance Lazzaro said that the 22-year-old rapper had been “receiving threats from other inmates.”
Lazzaro said in a statement that his client was “completely innocent of all charges.”
“An entertainer who portrays a ‘gangster image’ to promote his music does not make him a member of an enterprise,” Lazzaro said.
“Mr. Hernandez became a victim of this enterprise and later took steps by firing employees and publicly denounced this enterprise through a morning show. Threats were then made against his life which resulted in this case being brought immediately,” he added.
Two of the firearms charges that 6ix9ine is facing have a maximum sentence of life behind bars.
The Gummo rapper recently pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct in Brooklyn Criminal Court in connection with a May traffic stop.
In a 2015 case in New York, 6ix9ine was sentenced to probation for his involvement in a sexually explicit video of a 13-year-old girl. At the time of the incident, 6ix9ine was 18.
The video, posted on social media, showed the girl performing a sex act on another man while 6ix9ine “stands behind the child making a thrusting motion with his pelvis and smacking her on her buttocks,” according to court documents.
He is not registered as a sex offender, but he was told that he must refrain from gang affiliation and the posting and reporting of online sexually explicit or violent images of women or children.
Earlier this month, shots were fired on the set of 6ix9ine’s and Kanye West’s upcoming music video in Beverly Hills.
According to police, there were no injuries and the investigation is ongoing, but they could not confirm the names of anyone involved in the incident.
6ix9ine’s new album, which features West and Nicki Minaj, was due to be released last Friday but it’s been postponed.
—With files from the Associated PressFollow @KatieScottNews
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