You may or may not be familiar with the “Nine Trey Gangsters.” If not, you might have heard of one of their self-avowed members, Brooklyn rapper Tekashi 6ix9ine, or 69 for short. And if neither of those ring a bell, you’ve probably heard of the Bloods. Nine Trey is a prison set of the Bloods street gang, and Tekashi, nee Daniel Hernandez, allegedly became associated with them while serving a stint for marijuana trafficking on Rikers Island as a teenager.
Over the weekend, that affiliation came back to haunt him over the weekend, as Tekashi and five other Nine Trey members were arrested and indicted on federal racketeering charges involving armed robberies and shootings in New York. If convicted, Tekashi is facing life in prison.
“As alleged in the indictment, this gang, which included platinum-selling rap artist Tekashi 6ix 9ine, wreaked havoc on New York City, engaging in brazen acts of violence,” said U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Geoffrey S. Berman. “Showing reckless indifference to others’ safety, members of the gang were allegedly involved in robberies and shootings, including a shooting inside the crowded Barclay’s Center, and a shooting in which an innocent bystander was hit.”
The criminal indictment was unsealed in federal court on Monday, detailing the gang’s criminal activities:
Nine Trey was a criminal enterprise involved in committing numerous acts of violence, including shootings, robberies, and assaults in and around Manhattan and Brooklyn. Members and associates of Nine Trey engaged in violence to retaliate against rival gangs, to promote the standing and reputation of Nine Trey, and to protect the gang’s narcotics business. Members and associates of Nine Trey enriched themselves by committing robberies and selling drugs, such as heroin, fentanyl, furanly fentanyl, MDMA, dibutylone, and marijuana.
Takeshi alone has been charged with racketeering conspiracy, two counts of using or carrying a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence, and three counts of committing a violent crime in aid of racketeering.
As noted above, this is not Tekashi’s first run-in with the law. In 2015, he pleaded guilty to one felony count of use of a child (a 13-year-old girl) in a sexual performance. Later, he was the target of death threats from prison gangs after turning himself in on assault charges, despite (or maybe because of) his gang ties. The rapper told TMZ earlier this summer that he was “so scared” while in custody, because other inmates tried to “kill me” and “slit my throat.”
U.S. District Judge Paul A. Engelmayer denied Tekashi’s request for bail, and he remains in federal custody.