By Martha Ross, Mercury News
Tekashi 6ix9ine better hope that a judge agrees that he offered invaluable testimony in last month’s high-profile trial of Nine Trey Gangsta Bloods gang members and lets him leave prison sooner rather than later.
That’s because the flamboyant rapper, who was born Daniel Hernandez, has cut a record deal worth more than $10 million with 10K Projects, his former label, TMZ reported. Once he is released from prison, he’ll earn the money by putting out two albums, one in English and one in Spanish, sources told TMZ.
So for Tekashi, crime, and being a “snitch” about the crime, may pay — big time.
The Brooklyn-born music phenomenon will be sentenced Dec. 18 for weapons, drugs and other crimes that originally carried a mandatory term of 47 years in prison.
But immediately after Tekashi was arrested and indicted in November 2018, he agreed to break an unspoken code of silence among gang members and cooperate with federal prosecutors in their sweeping racketeering case against the violent Nine Trey crew. That cooperation now means a judge could agree to sentence the rapper to time served and let him leave federal custody.
Last month, Tekashi, 23, was the star witness in the trial of two men, Anthony Ellison and Aljermiah Mack, who were said to be prominent members of the Nine Trey gang.
Tekashi offered detailed testimony about the inner workings of the gang. He said he joined the gang in 2017, just as his platinum-selling career was taking off, to give his music street credibility with hip-hop fans.
Tekashi described how members of the gang, which started several decades ago on Rikers Island, N.Y., used intimidation and violence to coerce enemies and commit crimes.
His testimony led to a jury convicting Ellison and Mack, marking an important victory for prosecutors who already had secured guilty pleas from Tekashi and other members. Ellison and Mack were found guilty of racketeering conspiracy; Ellison also was found guilty of kidnapping Tekashi in July 2018.
The verdicts also were seen as a vindication of sorts for Tekashi, who was publicly denounced as “a snitch” by Snoop Dogg, The Game, 50 Cent and a long list of other rappers. While his testimony may allow him to soon return to his career, his co-defendants Mack and Ellison face potential life sentences.
From the confines of federal lockup, Tekashi reportedly has been aware what other rappers were saying about him and apparently hasn’t been concerned, sources told TMZ for a report last week.
In fact, Tekashi has reportedly been telling associates he doesn’t care what the other rappers think about him; he is dismissing them as “haters” and as “has-beens” who are jealous, presumably of his fame and his potential to be more popular than ever. It looks as if his label agrees.
If Tekashi wants to get back to making music, it’s also safe to assume that he wants to get back on Instagram so he can start trolling his critics and picking feuds with the “haters.”
Perhaps more than “Gummo,” “Gotti,” “Fefe” and his other music, Tekashi is known for trolling his critics, for feuding with rappers like Trippie Redd and Casanova and for keeping everyone buzzing about his rainbow hair and his almost daily drama.
Writers and music industry experts, trying to explain his sudden and confounding rise to rap superstardom, have described him as the “troll prince of hip-hop” and the “Donald Trump of music.”
Tekashi also reportedly is unconcerned enough about being the target of gang retaliation that he has rejected the option of disappearing forever into a federal witness protection program, TMZ reported last week.
But what can you do to stop snitches? Here’s a list of snitches with pictures and locations. Also read: Control of Information so you can stop snitching on yourself. Also: How to find out who’s a snitch and 10 Ways to Spot an Informant and How the cops are tracking you and No Warrant No Problem and Criminal defenses (How to beat your court case) And to inspire you: 7 Fugitives who Became Folk Heroes, How I Lost my friends