Fat Joe has claimed he has lied in “95 per cent” of his songs, criticising the use of Young Thug‘s lyrics in his current RICO trial.
The rapper joined Gayle King on CNN in a discussion of Young Thug’s trial, who was charged with several felonies alongside Gunna including two gang-related charges in 2022. Both men have denied their charges, with Young Thug having his bail denied three times. Gunna was released from prison in December 2022 after entering a negotiated plea; Young Thug’s case is still ongoing.
In November this year, it was ruled that Young Thug’s lyrics could be used in his trial subject to certain conditions. The ruling was criticised by Young Thug’s lawyer as “targeting the right to free speech”. The use of rap lyrics in criminal cases has also been criticised by Songwriters of North America’s Dina LaPolt as “a convenient way to inject racial bias and confusion into the criminal justice process.”
Now, Fat Joe has come to defend Young Thug and speaking out against the use of his lyrics in the trial, calling it “horrible” and “a travesty”: “I’ve been rapping professionally for 30 years — I’ve lied in almost 95 percent of my songs.”
“I’m being honest,” he added. “I write like I feel that day. I’m just being creative. You couldn’t build a jail high enough for the lyrics I’ve said on songs which are all untrue.”
Joe continued: “What I am is I’m a family man, someone who gives back to his community all the time. I opened businesses in my community so the music would never amount to the actual person Joseph Cartegena. What’s even more horrible is the District Attornies. They know those lyrics ain’t real. They know that’s creativity, but if it helps their case, they’ll use it to put these guys in jail.”
He also stressed that “there really is six defendants in Atlanta who might spend the rest of their life in jail for something that’s totally not true.” “This is very serious,” he said. “This destroys families.”
Joe also claimed that Young Thug’s case was “setting a precedent in America”. “They’ve use this before with an up and coming aspiring artist,” he explained. “They never took a guy off the stage in the arena – a number one artist that my daughter and all the kids look up to.”
“It’s nasty work,” he concluded. “It’s real nasty work.”
He went on to say: “If you really wanna put these gentlemen in jail and they’re really criminals, use real evidence, use real facts.” He compared the trial to Arnold Schwarzenegger, claiming that the actor should “be in jail for 20,000 years” for killing “10,000 people in movies”.
Later in the conversation, he also expressed that the trial “definitely puts vulnerability once again to rappers all around the world.”
Recently, it was revealed that Fat Joe and 50 Cent‘s rivalry caused tension in the New York Knicks. Tim Thomas, a 50 Cent fan, clashed with Stephen Marbury, who favoured Fat Joe, causing their long friendship to dissolve.
“I knew his brothers, his mom, his pops,” said Thomas. “We actually played for Fat Joe with Terror Squad at the Rucker. It was really no issues between us at all until 50 and Fat Joe got into it. That’s when me and Steph kinda separated.”