Young Thug Delayed His Own Trial by Allegedly Dealing Drugs in the Courtroom
Pro tip: If you're at risk of being sentenced to decades behind bars, don't bring drugs to court with you.
Published on February 3, 2023

Young Thug's criminal racketeering trial has been delayed after he allegedly made a drug deal right in the middle of the courtroom. But the Grammy-winning rapper's legal team is arguing that prosecutors are deliberately spinning the incident in order to prejudice the jury against him.

Jeffrey Williams, known professionally as Young Thug, was arrested last May along with 27 other members of his YSL (Young Slime Life) label. Prosecutors are alleging that YSL is in fact a “criminal street gang” responsible for numerous violent crimes, including armed robbery and murder. 

To back up their allegations, prosecutors are citing evidence from Young Thug's own lyrics and social media posts. Williams and his co-defendants have been charged with a 56-count RICO criminal conspiracy case that could see them locked behind bars for decades. 

The trial kicked off early last month, beginning with the long and arduous process of selecting a jury willing to provide a fair and balanced judgement on the case. That process ground to a halt on January 18th, though, when Williams was accused of making a “hand-to-hand drug transaction” in court, ABC News reports. According to prosecutors, Khalieff Adams, another defendant in the case, walked up to Williams and handed him a Percocet pill in the courtroom.

"Sheriff's Office personnel immediately approached defendant Williams and demanded that defendant Williams relinquish the contraband defendant Williams placed in his hand before placing his hand under the table," according to court documents obtained by ABC. Cops then searched Adams, who was reportedly found with "Percocet, marijuana, tobacco and other contraband, wrapped in plastic and food seasoning to [hide] the odor of the marijuana." 

Adams then reportedly attempted to “ingest other items of contraband... in order to conceal them,” and was taken to a local hospital. The defendant's attorney told ABC that her client “maintains his innocence” and that the charges against him are “mere statements made by the State in an effort to thwart the lengthiness of the jury selection process."

Young Thug has also denied any involvement in the alleged transaction. Williams said that he extended his hand to Adams for what he thought would be a simple handshake and did not expect to receive drugs. And although prosecutors allege that he tried to hide the pill under the table, courtroom video shows him willingly handing it over to a security guard immediately after receiving it from Adams.

"Mr. Williams was not knowingly or willingly or intentionally involved with a supposed 'drug deal,'" his attorney, Brian Steel, told ABC News. "The State's motion was replete with factual inaccuracies, misrepresentations and was filed, it appears, solely for the purpose of placing Defendant Jeffrey Williams in a bad light in the eyes of the media and the public, and with the distinct possibility of poisoning the jury pool."

Young Thug has not been charged in the alleged courtroom drug dealing incident, but still faces 8 criminal charges in connection with the original RICO case. Adams has received several additional charges for allegedly bringing drugs to court, though.

Cover image via

Chris Moore
Chris Moore is a New York-based writer who has written for Mass Appeal while also mixing records and producing electronic music.
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